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Fablehaven Summary: Mythical Creatures from Fablehaven
Fairy in the Garden
Brandon Mull: Fablehaven
Fablehaven an amazing series by Brandon Mull captures your attention through its creativity and imaginative plot. I didn't have high hopes as I turned the first page, but by the time I got into the second or third chapter of the first book, I found myself thirsting for more. When the fifth book came out, I was so eager I ordered it ahead of time in anticipation of hearing Seth and Kendra Sorenson's crazy adventure with the Knights of the Living Dawn. This preteen book is complex and interesting enough for an adult to not only enjoy, but feel anticipatory and intrigued. I strongly suggest it to those who have enjoyed the Percy Jackson and Harry Potter series.
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The book begins when Seth and Kendra Sorenson are on their way to their grandparents on their father's side. They are going to be staying there for a while, because their mother's parents have passed away. They are dropped off at their grandparent Sorenson's unsure of what to expect, as they had not spent much time in the past with these grandparents. They explore the area and although everything seems very typical, they feel like there is a mystery yet to be found. It is not until the precocious Seth begins to test his boundaries that they find the reality that lies within Fablehaven.
Their discoveries are not a shock to the grandparents, in fact, they had hoped that Kendra and Seth would be able to find the secrets that lay within. The grandparents had hoped someday they would find hers that would be capable of taking care of this fantastical land. Seth finds these mysteries as he stretches his boundaries, while Kendra, the more mature and older sibling, discovers this land after finding a key that leads to a puzzle. Eventually, she discovers that more lies behind this beautiful setting where butterflies are really fairies along with many other fantastical creatures.
Not only do Seth and Kendra learn that the butterflies are actually fairies, but everything they once saw as normal things has a hidden truth. Fablehaven is one of just a few remaining strongholds for magic in the world. Mull does a great job explaining the world where fairies roam, demons lurk, and unicorns are the rock stars of the world. Preserves, such as Fablehaven, are intended to protect the magical creatures that live there. Although these areas are intended to be a safe haven for these magical creatures, but not always safe for humans.
As the series goes on, Mull introduces a few of the other preserves where magical creatures are becoming increasingly dangerous for them. He does an exquisite job making each place unique, yet believable. Each preserve contains their own charm, own creatures, and own dangers.
Satyr Fighting with Woman
Mull does an amazing job building characters who are true to themselves. Although some have surprising backgrounds; they are believable, sometimes unpredictable, and lovable.
Kendra is the older sibling and acts as the more mature, responsible one. She is a bookworm who has a heart of gold. Her brother in many ways is her exact opposite. The one thing that unites them is their sincere love for one another and their devotion to the good in this world.
Mull uses Seth's curious nature as a means to move the story along. It's often Seth's disobedience to his grandfather that causes chaos, yet through his dedication to the cause of good magic; he, his sister, and the Knights of the Living Dawn learn how to save not only the magical realm, but the world as well.
Two of my favorite characters are the satyrs that Seth befriends, Doren and Newel. They love all things technology and junk food, although Grandfather Sorenson strongly discourages these pastimes. Satyrs as a whole, including Doren and Newel, are an unruly bunch. Satyrs are known for their obnoxious fun-loving ways, which is starkly compared to the centaurs who have a superiority complex and take life very serious.
I would love to go into the details of each character, but by doing so, I would reveal too much of the storyline. I can tell you that Seth and Kendra encounter many amazing friends, some that betray, some that are true to the end, and some that convert from good to bad or bad to good. Each character has a life story that you get little glimpses that make the world of Fablehaven seem like a place that truly exists.
Book Club Questions for Fablehaven
- Kendra likes to follow the rules, while Seth likes to break them. How did their attitudes change throughout the book?
- When Kendra and Seth first see the private property signs at Fablehaven, Seth finds the signs funny; Kendra finds them creepy. The last sign reads: certain death awaits. Would you agree with Kendra or Seth? Are the signs effective? Do they foretell the future of the book?
- Brandon Mull used many mythological creatures, especially those from Greek mythology. Can you identify any of these?
- How are Seth and Kendra changed by their experience at Fablehven? Do you feel you changed in any way by reading Fablehaven?
- What is the most memorable way someone risked or gave their life in Fablehaven? Would you risk your life for anything? If so, what?
© 2010 Angela Michelle Schultz