The Cronus Chronicles: The Shadow Thieves
by Anne Ursu
YA fantasy. 424 pp.
Something extraordinary is about to happen to Charlotte Mielswetzski.
It's not the very cute kitten that appears out of nowhere. It's not the arrival of her cousin Zee, who believes he's the cause of a mysterious sickness that has struck his friends back in England. And it's not the white-faced, yellow-eyed men in tuxedos who follow Charlotte everywhere. What's so extraordinary is not any one of these things. It's all of them.
When Charlotte's friends start to get sick, Charlotte and Zee set out to find a cure. Their quest leads them to a not-so-mythical Underworld, where they face Harpies that love to rhyme, gods with personnel problems, and ghosts with a thirst for blood.
Charlotte and Zee learn that in a world overrun by Nightmares, Pain, and Death, the really dangerous character is a guy named Phil. And then they discover that the fate of every person—living and dead—is in their hands.
Completed May 25
I picked this book up from a Devil's Den end stand that basically said if you like Percy Jackson, you should read this. The employee who put up that stand ought to be fired.
The premise behind this book has so much promise, even if it is fairly standard—two kids must venture into the Underworld to save us all. The characters the author has created are actually fairly interesting. But somehow, it all just fell apart and failed to work.
So instead of reading this, go back and reread Gods Behaving Badly.