Thursday, July 1, 2021

BOOK REVIEW: Archibald Lox and the Forgotten Crypt

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When a couple of assassins catch up with Archie, he's forced to flee to the Merge in search of friendship and safety.

As his skills develop in that parallel universe, he opens a gateway to a long-forgotten crypt, where ancient secrets are revealed.

In a city of ice, the greatest players of the six realms have assembled for a legendary Grop Tourney, but a small group of plotters are more interested in kidnapping...

Book four of the Archibald Lox series by Darren Shan, the New York Times bestselling author of Cirque Du Freak and Lord Loss.

This is the first of three books in VOLUME TWO of the series.


Everyone who has known me since age 12 knows what a big Darren Shan fan I am. Even as an adult, he's one of the authors whose YA books still captivate and intrigue me.
The same goes for Archibald Lox. The first three books were unlike anything I'd read before, Merging (pun intended) our world with a fantastical world of magic and mystique.
I was eager to start book 4, which has Archibald struggling with a specific lock on the brink of our world and the Merge.
During just the first few chapters, we learn a shocking tale about Archibald's mentor Winston. Right away, you're immersed in the veiled darkness Shan writes so well, making you think and wonder about what ifs and whys.
You also learn more about the kingdoms within the Merge and that world's politics.
I wanted to touch on that in my review because oftentimes, when a fantasy author spends a lot of time on in-world politics, it can become dull or, even worse, an infodump.
Shan artfully avoids that by weaving the history across a chapter, almost as if it's its own tale within the novel.
I am afraid if I go any further, I will accidentally give spoilers, so I am going to stop here.
I do however want to add that Shan once again brings us into a first person, present tense POV without seeming to have lost anything that can sometimes be left behind in this tense: such as scenery and impartiality.
You are IN Archibald's head, living the story through him, and book 4 truly proves that Shan is a master storyteller.

*I received an advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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