Falcon Quinn and the Black Mirror, by Jennifer Finney Boylan
When 13 year-old Falcon Quinn and his classmates Max and Megan board their school bus, they are taken to a strange land. Instead of their regular school, they are taken to the Academy of Monsters. There, the children are told that Max is told that he is a Sasquatch and Megan an elemental. But no one can figure out what Falcon is. At this school for monsters, the new students are told they will leave their monstrous nature behind and learn to live as normal humans in order to hide from the Guardians, the ruthless monster hunters.
Falcon is a relatable boy with a good nature, befriending the friendless and ridiculed. And despite their so-called monstrous natures, most of Falcon’s friends are loyal and kind-hearted as well. In a truly unique and fascinating world, the monsters are those whom the reader identifies and feels sympathy.
Readers will also notice many similarities to the Harry Potter series; but Falcon Quinn has a stronger message of self-acceptance and friendship. This fantasy is a fast-paced, action-filled adventure. With a climactic, fantastic final showdown, I was more than impressed with this over-sized story with well-developed characters. Middle readers will love this fun and exciting new series.