November 24, 2007

Archer's Quest - by Linda Sue Park

So you're sitting in your bedroom minding your own business, just doing your homework, when suddenly an arrow whips toward you, snatching your hat and thunking it into the wall. Personally, I'd freak out. This book's main character though, 12-year-old Kevin, is pretty cool about it. It turns out that a 12th century Korean archer had been transported from his own time in Korea to Kevin's house in New York in 1998. The book tells the story of Kevin and his new archer friend, Chu-Mong, trying to figure out how to get the archer back to his own time. The author does a good job of making this fantasy situation feel like a normal realistic fiction tale, and she really lets the readers experience the whole adventure as if we were sitting right next to Kevin.

This story is full of action and suspense, and is also a bit of a mystery. The writing is clear, fast, and easy to follow, and the book never slows down enough for the reader to lose interest. The ending is satisfying, and there are enough twists and turns to keep the reader guessing until the very end. This book will satisfy anyone who likes... good books! Readers who like Korean (or any) history, archery, and characters stuck in impossible situations who have to struggle to solve them will especially appreciate this story.

Check out the author's website. There's more to it than it first appears. Remember that she also wrote the wonderful Newbery winner A Single Shard.