The Kingdom of What Is
This is a fantasy novel that builds a beautiful world and sets its characters on a wonderful adventure. Its full of friendship, courage, curiosity, and an entertaining journey.
The story begins with Kate in school being teased for looking so horrible because she’s been tired from not sleeping so well lately. From there we get to meet a few of the cast members and we learn more about Kate’s surroundings. One of the things I was most surprised by was how modern her world was. When I read the description of the story I was expecting more of a Medieval setting where you would typically expect to find evil characters like Grod Vurmis lying beneath every other rock. Instead its like Kate is taken to another place where the woods are beautiful, and the animals can speak.
A few other reviewers commented that this story is reminiscent of ‘The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe” I definitely agree but in a good way. The world building and the stress on good versus evil reminds me of the great series by CS Lewis but there is plenty of originality and depth in Petersen’s work. I thought the plot was incredibly interesting and found the characters to be likeable and entertaining.
My one complaint about the story was the age of the cast. When I saw that the story was a YA Fantasy I was intrigued from the start. But then I realized the protagonist was thirteen and felt disappointed. I have a hard time staying interested in stories with younger casts, so I was a bit turned off by the pre-teen characters right from the start. As a side note; I think thirteen is a little too young for this novel to be considered YA Fantasy and should instead be listed under Middle-Grade fiction to avoid confusion. Despite my disappointment, I did enjoy the story very much and will definitely recommend it to readers of all ages.