THE DIE OF DESTINY (CHAMPION’S QUEST), by Frank L. Cole, Shadow Mountain, Aug. 3, 2021, Hardcover, $17.99 (ages 8-12)
Four kids find themselves in the middle of a role-playing game in Frank L. Cole’s Champion’s Quest: The Die of Destiny.
Lucas Silver’s life is about to change. He thinks it’s because he’s made plans to escape from his foster home and make his way to New York, but then he and his friend Miles and two girls they’re acquainted with ― Jasmine and Vanessa ― find Hob and Bogie’s Curiosity Shoppe and agree to play a game of Champion’s Quest.
When the four kids walk out the front door of the Curiosity Shoppe, they immediately discover they’re no longer in West Virginia, but transported into the game and a wild fantasy world of dangerous goblins, brutish ogres, and a powerful witch.
They must work together as a team, overcome their real-world weaknesses, and believe in themselves and each other if they are to outwit, outplay, and survive their foes in this ultimate quest to defeat a treacherous monster. —Synopsis provided by Shadow Mountain
I’m a fan of Frank L. Cole. I really enjoyed his Potions Masters trilogy. So, I entered The Die of Destiny with great hopes. Unfortunately, for me, it wasn’t as successful as his earlier work. This isn’t because of his writing, rather the subject matter. And that’s what’s going to make or break the appeal for readers.
For those that do like the premise, Cole does an excellent job creating a magical world in which his characters are pushed to the limit and are forced to grow. Cole’s writing is smooth and accessible, and his pacing is strong.
As a middle-reader, my brother would have gobbled The Die of Destiny. He loved role playing — specifically Dungeons & Dragons — and this book would have been a natural extension of that love. My interests where the complete opposite at that age, and even with the adventure that plays out, I probably wouldn’t have read far before putting the book down.
Everyone who purchases a copy of the book and submits their receipt via the form linked here: https://shadowmountain.com/championsquest/ will receive a special bundle of goodies that includes a collectible metal bookmark, dice, a signed bookplate, and a poster. Bundles should start shipping out the beginning of September.
© 2021, Cracking the Cover. All rights reserved. Unless otherwise noted, all books — digital and physical — have been provided for free by publishers in exchange for honest and unbiased reviews. All thoughts and opinions are those of the reviewer.