Title: North! or Be Eaten
Author: Andrew Peterson
Genre: Middle grade fantasy
Publisher: Waterbrook Press
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Source: Print copy that I won from Jen at Divinest Sense
First line: “Toooothy cow!” bellowed Podo as he whacked a stick against the nearest glipwood tree.
The Wingfeather Saga is quickly becoming one of my favorite children’s fantasy series. It ranks up there with The Chronicles of Narnia and the Harry Potter series in my mind. I know it’s only two titles in, but they are both amazing. North! or Be Eaten starts right where On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness leaves off.
Spoiler alert: This review will contain spoilers from the first book in the series.
The Igiby family is hiding out in Peet’s treehouse in Glipwood Forest, preparing for their trip north to the Ice Prairies. They now know that they are the true Jewels of Anneira: Tink is really King Kalmar, the heir to the throne; Janner is the Throne Warden, whose responsibility it is to protect the king; and Leeli is the Song Maiden. Gnag the Nameless and his Fangs of Dang are still looking for them, determined to keep them from returning to Anneira and taking their rightful place as leaders. It doesn’t take long before the Igibys are running for their lives, and the first battle will cost them dearly.
Like book one, I read North! or Be Eaten aloud to my four kids, and it has everything that we love about a fantasy series: action and adventure, fantastical creatures, difficult decisions regarding responsibility and loyalty, heroic quests, sacrificial love, and finding forgiveness. There is something amazing about reading a book like this to your kids – the themes they are taking in are ones I believe are so important. There isn’t any sense of “okay, kids, you’re going to learn a lesson now” – simply amazing story-telling, vivid world-building, tongue-in-cheek humor, and wonderful characters.
Whether you love children’s literature and fantasy, or simply long for good stories that are well-written, you must read this series.