Fablehaven: Rise of the Evening Star

 

Magical creatures once roamed the earth freely. But as belief in them began to fail they moved into magical preserves that now keep them and the rest of humanity safe. Preserves like Fablehaven.

Its been almost one year since Kendra and Seth last visited Fablehaven, the preserve full of magical creatures that their Grandparent's run. But when a Kobold inflitrates their school, and a mysterious man attempts to have them steal a powerful artifact from the Scoiety of the Evening Star, the two of them find themselves being whisked back to the preserve in Connecticut.

And when they get there, bad news awaits them. The Society of the Evening Star, the group of people bent on releasing the demons housed within the demon prison, are rising. With the enemy rising, Grandpa Sorenson had obtained help in locatind and retrieving the artifact that is hidden on the property,

But, when one of them proves to be a member of the Society, it is up to Kendra and Seth to stop them from obtaining the artifact. By any means possible.

 

 

 

/*** THE FOLLOWING PARAGRAPHS MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS ***\

**/** SPOILERS ARE PRESENT **\**

 

 

Compared to the first book in the series, this one was a masterpiece. The stakes were even higher than in this first one. The action was greater. More awesome characters were produced. And more awesome creatures were found.

 

Now the analysis ...

 

This book is set almost a whole year after the events of the previous book. In that time, Kendra has discovered that she can see magical creatures without the milk.

That power comes in handy specifically when a horrifying monster infilitrates her school. Apparently, the creature, referred to as a Kobold, is disguised as a normal boy, and only Kendra sees it as it really is. Of course, thats disturbing by itself. But its more so when some weird person comes and claims he can get rid of it. All she and Seth have to do is steal a frog statue.

This frog statue is hidden in the home of a vampiric blix. One that could reanimate the dead. And to make it even better, his home is a mortuary. Thats fun isn't. And of course, Kendra being Kendra, it was Seth who had to go retrieve the statue.

Unfortunately, there were no undead to battle on the way there. That would have been fun. And right up Seth's alley. The only undead in the series come up with Kendra there. (BOOOOOO!!!!!).

Anyway, Seth recovers the statue without much issue (also BOOOOO!!!). I found it odd though that the statue had to eat to be moved. Or why the demon was made anyway. What psychotic made a demonic frog that eats people. Finally, Seth gets out of the mortuary (with Olloch and minus some skin where he was bitten by the statue). And the statue got rid of the kobold. Simple magic does complex things sometimes.

But the monster did have time to destroy the reputation of a teacher. Apparently, he put a tack on her chair, causing her to faint and then go crazy (which was Vanessa's fault).

 

Speaking of Vanessa.

 

Kendra finally got contacted by Grandpa about the Errol, saying they had no knowledge of each other. And that he was probably a member of the Society of the Evening Star in disguise. He said he would be sending someone to bring them to Fablehaven.

And it was damn good timing, because Errol was having Kendra and Seth go after a Society artifact. That would be inherently dangerous, and helpful to the Evening Star.

But anyway, Vanessa shows up in a custom Italian Sports car (wonderful), and then drives away at 130+ mph, narrowly avoiding a dullion (which Seth described as looking like a giant moving haystack (also wonderful)), getting them to Fablehaven in just under two hours.

More on Vanessa, she is supposed to be a master of magical creatures, and was here to help look for and find an "artifact". Unbeknownst to her (kind of), that artifact is the legendary key to the demon prison.

 

When Kendra and Seth return to Fablehaven, they find some new faces. Tanu, Coulter, and Vanessa.

 

Tanu, is a potions master. And he had a fun experiment to show Kendra and Seth. Bottled emotions. Literally, puire emotions in a bottle. He told them each to sample one. Of course, Seth being Seth had to try fear. He reported that it was like riding a rollin coaster, but that seemed like quite an odd description. I don't have a better way I think should have been described. And then Kendra decides its a good idea not to be told which emotion shes sampling. Such a bad idea. Such a bad idea.

Tanu comes in handy later in the book and series. Being a master of potions, his potions get the characters out of many sticky situations.

 

After Tanu, came Coulter. A master of magical objects. Like Tanu, he used a demonstration to introduce himself. An invisibility glove and a ball with a distractor spell went to good use. At least until the distractor spell didn't work on Kendra, courtesy of the fairy kisses she received at the end of the next book. The next chapter reveals why. But besides the distractor spell, we find other things about Coulter. Like, he thinks there are certain places that girl should not travel too. While I don't neccesarily agree with the viewpoint, Kendra agreed that, given the option, there were things she would rather not see and places she would rather not go. I guess its just the fact that she was being told she wouldn't be taken even is she wanted to that was her issue.

But Vanessa made up for Coulter's feminist views with the umite candle.

 

After their meetings with Tanu and Coulter, another new character is introduced to us. One thats very interesting and quite necessary to the remaining books. The Sphinx.

He is apparently superiorly wise and knowledgeable about the magical world. He looked at Kendra and told her she was fairykind. An increasingly rare condition that was the result of being marked an equalamong fairies. As a result she could read, speak, and understand the Sylvan languages, alowing her to communicate with the fairies, brownies, and imps. She could see in the dark. And she can recharge magical devices that are out of magic. He told Seth immediately that he did not know of a way to stop Olloch from devouring him.

 

Speaking of not being able to stop Olloch ...

 

When they all return from their meeting with the Sphinx, Seth finds that Olloch has managed his way into the preserve. Good thing that Hugo was not far and was sufficiently able to handle Olloch while Seth made his way back to the house.

This marks another stupid plan from Seth. If he had remained in the yard, and not gone to meet Newel and Doren (who are awesome at tennis) there would have been no attack from Olloch. But his disobediance did prove one thing. There was a traitor in the house.

Olloch could only have entered the park if he was admitted through the register. And only the caretakers had access to the register. Whoever had allowed Olloch into Fablehaven, was definantly not a friend of the preserves. For if Olloch grew big enough, he would be able to overthrow the treaty and plunge the preserve into darkness. Which, considering they were hunting for the artifact, may not be a horrible idea. What could better protect the artifact then a fallen preserve filled with monsters. Not that I wanted Fablehaven to fall, it just seemed like a reasonable idea.

 

Now, with Olloch roaming the preserve, Seth's already small range of adventuring (meaning, THE YARD) was further restricted (the yard, WITH SUPERVISION). But Coulter was not going to let that stop him. The day before, he and Seth had solicited information from a fog giant concerning where Warren had gone when he went albino. Apparently, he had been exploring, The Valley of Four Hills, a prime area for the location of the artifact.

That night, he took Seth and Hugo to the valley in hopes of defeating whatever monster hid there. Allowing easy access to the artifact vault. At this point, Coulter's actions made him look very much like the traitor. Take Seth out at night with a demon after him. Go to where the artifact was hidden alone. Could that be more suspicious (maybe if he had access to the artifact key). Anyway. he thought that a phantom lived within the valley, specifically a grove at one end. Unfortunately, he was wrong. It was not a phantom. But a revenant.

The reveant, which was pretty much a zombie with a nail sticking out of its neck, pretty much immobilized both Coulter and Seth with some sort of magical fear. A paralyzing, irrational fear. A fear so much, that it turned Coulter into a mute albino like Warren (at least that problem was solved). But not before he forcefed Seth a cocoon that enveloped him and stopped the fear of the revenant. It also saved him from Olloch, who proceeded to enter the grove and eat Seth and the cocoon whole.

 

Thank god for that cocoon. It saved Seth the torture of being eaten alive by a demon. Instead, he got to stay in the cocoon for some amount of time while Olloch digested him. Thankfully, digestion worked the same as pure eating him alive. When Seth finally got out of the demon, it was reverting back to its statue form. But more fun came after Seth got himself out of demon.

He traveled to the Old Mansion on the property and was met by a swirling whirlwind of dust. Thanks to the fact that he had had no milk that day he survived the encounter. This becomes important in the next book.

 

Meanwhile, back at the house, a trap is laid for the traitor. Grandma and Grandpa claim to have placed the artifact key in a box that actually contained a Thief's net. The net caught Dale, who swore he had no memory of going after the key. And then all hell breaks lose.

Grandpa and Tanu come to the same conclusion, that both Coulter and Dale were being controlled in their sleep ... by Vanessa. A short battle ensues in which everyone in the house, minus Kendra, is incapitated.

Just to recap. Vanessa released her drumats which would then bite people in their sleep. Actually, the drumats were an excuse for Vanessa to bite everyone and establish a link to them so she could control them in her sleep. She then had Grandma or Grandpa change the resgister to allow in Olloch and someone known as Christopher Vogel. She had Coulter go and check out the grove. And had Dale go after the artifact key. All-in-all, a decent plan. And for once, it worked. Kind of. If she had gotten Kendra, all would have worked perfectly.

 

But Vanessa did not apprehend Kendra, and so Fablehaven still had hope. Kendra, having received help from the Fairy Queen once already decided to return to the pond. But she had a distinct feeling not to go onto the island. Unfortunately, when she began to talk to Lena at the pond, the other naiads released Mendingo.

And Mendingo, needing to complete the orders given to him by Muriel, brings Kendra to the ruins of the Forgotten Chapel and begins to dig down to her. Good thing there were some fairy guards left at the ruins, or Muriel and Bahumat would be back out waiting to cause problems. And then there would be real issues. A demon. A witch. A revenant. And a traiterous member of the Society of the Evening Star. Not evem Fablehaven could survive that.

But the fairies were there and they switched Mendingo to take orders from Kendra and the rest of the Fablehaven staff. So he's like Hugoo now. Just made of wood. Which is helpful. Especially as a scout. Or a guard. Which he is used for.

 

With Mendigo now switched, Kendra eventually meets back up with Seth, who she believes to be dead. Together, they develop a plan to infilitrate the house through the brownie doors. Good thing Seth remembered some of Tanu's potions, or else teh fit might have been a little tight. But with Tanu's potions in hand, they make through the Brownie's world and into the dungeon of the house.

In the dungeon, where they are almost cooked alive by Voorsh and Slaggo, they find Grandma and Grandpa who tell them to attempt to grab the key from Vanessa. But that's going to be a task.

 

Now, with their mission to go after the key, stuff is getting dicey. Getting caught would end them up in the dungeon and leave Fablehaven to the Evening Star. Letting it stay with Vanessa will eventually mean she gets the artifact, as does the Society. But stealing the key will make them a target of Vanessa and the Society, not something they want to be. With those thoughts in mind, Seth succeeds in getting the artifact from Vanessa, and getting ot of the house. But now, what do they do with it?

 

Of course, sticking with their personality types, Seth wants to go after the revenant armed with pliers and a courage potion. Kendra meanwhile wants to escape the preserve and find the Sphinx. Neither arre good options. But Seth, being the proactive one, just runs off with the potion, pliers, and Mendigo.

 

Entering the grove, Seth takes a small dose a courage potion. He assums that taking that small bit now would allow him to be able to take the rest when the revenant appeared. He expected that the power of the courage would dilute the fear emanating from the revenant. He was partially right. The potion counteracted the fear for some time. But not long enough. The courage from the potion was gone before Seth had even started removing the nail. But, being Seth, he had enough to get the nail out. Barely. He mentioned that he could barely see and barely move by the time he got it out. And then he collapsed.

 

Now, with the revenant out of the way, the path to the artifact is open for anyone. Including those who were once albinoed by the fear it produced. Coulter, Tanu, and Warren were now freed from the mind block the fear placed upon them.

That means that Warren is back in action. And boy does he prove helpful in the end.

 

Warren and Kendra travel to the grove to find Seth unconscious. The ordeal with the revenant has left him barely alive. And yet again, he will miss the best monsters and magic. When they finally find the inverted tower in the middle of the valley, the key is used to open the tower. As Warren said, "They just don't make entrances like they used to". That is so stupid true in this case. The way the entry way was described, it sounded pretty damn cool.

Going on with the inverted tower. It seemed like Warren had been through very similar structures. he knew to look for false steps. He kenw to look for a fake wall. He knew that the the more menacing monster guardian was the least dangerous. He sounds like the ultimate adventurer. I am sure he has some stories to tell.

Going on, the first main trial is the minotaur battle. Warren seemed to know that the least menacing the monster the more dangerous it would be. So he picked the menacing one. It was commented that the Minotaur seemed to know where the quicksand was. Shouldn't that have been assumed? The creator of teh tower would have been smart enough to make false stairs and a creature that new where quicksand was. They wouldn't want you trick it into killing itself. Thats too easy. Warren somehow manages to kill the beast after taking a spear to the abdomen.

 

And then came the cat. Not a house cat. Not a big cat. Not a monstrous firbreathing, posion spitting cat. All of the above. The cat that served as the vault for the artifact had nine reincarnations. Each more dangerous than the last. It went from a house cat, too several larger big cats, to a two headed cat, to one that spit poison and has serpents all over its body. It would have been one cool sight. A cool sight that Seth proceeded to miss again. Thankfully, Vanessa and Errol/Christopher Vogel come in, just when the cat is getting out of hand. Together they get it down to its last life.

And then Tanu and Coulter show up. Tanu takes an enalrging potion and beats the last cat to death revealing a cat shaped tea pot full of nothing. Or nothing until Kendra touched it. Turns out, the artifact was drained of magic energy. And then, when poured, the sand that came out healed all ailments.

Warren who was as close to death as possible was instantly healed. Vanessa who was blinded and deaf was healed. Tanu and Coulter, who were both albino returned to normal color. Dale, who had broken legs fighting a cyclops was healed. Too bad it didn't destroy the mind link between Vanessa and everyone.

 

Now, with the artifact, the Sands of Sanctity, procured, that leaves just one topic. What do we do with Vanessa? It was the Sphinx who suggested the Quiet Box. And ultra secure box in the dungeon that would render Vanessa incapable of control. Unfortunately, he would have to release teh current occupant. An unknon entity of who knows how much power. But everyone agreed, Vanessa could not be left out in the open or the dungeon.

 

Unfortunately, Vanessa revealed something disturbing after going into the Quiet Box. She had scrawled a lengthy message on the floor of teh cell, implicating the Sphinx as the leader of both the Knight of the Dawn and the Society of the Evening Star. If true, the Knights leader could be leading them into traps. And thats not all, if the Sphinx is the leader of the Scoeity, he now has one artifact, knows of Kendra;s abilities, and probably a released a powerful dark entity from the quiet box. Thats a lot of implications. Of course, Vanessa was a traitor and could be bartering for her safety. Who knows.

 

With the artifact from Fablehaven recovered, and the Sphinx a possible traitor, what else can be thrown at Fablehaven this summer? Find out in, Grip of the Shadow Plague.