Review #1: Review by Peggy Jo Wipf
Peggy Jo Wipf
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Reviewed By Peggy Jo Wipf for Readers’ Favorite
The Four by M.D. Allen begins with the author revealing a little more about Kari, Lainey, and Kaine before they came to the Inner Realm. The eight teenagers have been in the Inner Realm for several months now, learning to control their individual abilities. Matilda and Ethan face many new trials from evil forces, namely four brothers. The four brothers look exactly alike, but each brother has a wicked skill that can control or kill the teenagers. The Watchers have their hands full keeping track of the Chosen, especially when Matilda takes off and Ethan attempts to rescue her. Will they learn to trust the Watchers to guide them and prevent the evil that surrounds them from controlling them?
M.D. Allen packs The Four with adventure, drama, and suspense. The Chosen teenagers go from one danger to facing unknown assailants. The teens have little time to adjust from one trial before training for the next. The author keeps the reader guessing as to whether the Chosen are ready for the next task they are about to face. Some questions about Matilda and Ethan’s past and future are answered, but at the end of the novel the author throws a curveball you did not see coming. Overall, I loved reading the development of the Chosen teenagers. The author created a bewitching storyline that will mesmerize readers. The novel ends in a cliffhanger that will keep you hungry for the next one. This is an author you will want to watch as her novels are well-written and contain unique plots and characters.
★★★★★ “M.D. Allen writes with the skill and boldness of a seasoned author. Matilda Seer challenges its readers with a plot that has multiple levels of deception, mystique, and uncertainty. The storyline rotates between the groups that split up. I love how M.D. Allen adds details that make readers anticipate the next book. When will Carter have to choose between evil or good, what is behind the mysterious door in their room, what is the connection between Matilda and Ethan, and finally, did Lord Rafe survive the fire? The author breathes life into her characters as they each show distinct personalities and temperaments. Their mission is hampered by their lack of knowledge in a magical world. I highly recommend this book to those who enjoy a well-written novel that transports them into a world of magic, mystery, and suspense.” – Reviewed By Peggy Jo Wipf for Readers’ Favorite
“This is one of those books you can’t put down. MD Allen draws you in right from the start, as a group of unlikely companions find themselves unexpectedly transported to a different and ‘out of this world’ experience. In this first book in the series, Allen brings such a beautiful combination of teenage angst, complicated friendships and fantasy to the table – offering readers an escape from the predictable and an invitation to imagine a realm within a realm. Reading Matilda Seer will start you on a journey with a bunch of teens – as they uncover a destiny and purpose they could never have imagined for themselves. Be sure to order the next book, The Door, because by the time you finish Matilda Seer, you’ll be desperate to open the pages of the next book, to see what else awaits The Chosen.” – Jill McLachlan, author of The Curious Teacher.
TITLE: The Door AUTHOR: M D Allen Star Rating: 4.5
‘A cleverly plotted, fantasy adventure, highly recommended for old teenagers.’
Firstly, let me begin by saying how much I enjoyed this fantasy adventure by M D Allen. The writing style, always simple and often very visual, works perfectly for a book of this nature. Pacing is also very good, keeping things moving, excellent for the restless teenager. The characters too feel fleshed-out, fully-formed and always interesting to follow.
Now, it’s important to know that this is the second book in the set, the first being Matilda Seer. Is it important to read this book first? Yes, possibly. I, in fact, stopped reading The Door after Chapter 2 and went and read the first book. It helped a lot and it vastly improved my enjoyment of The Door.
So, what is the Door? Where’s it go to? Basically, every year – in December if I remember correctly – foster children get picked to go through this door to the Inner Realm. In this book, the Chosen attend school in the Ethereal city. What follows is a superbly plotted adventure as the reader not only gets to know the characters much better, but also the fantasy world.
I’m a big fan of this ‘C S Lewis’ style of plot. Children – young and older – still love the thought of being ‘chosen’, just like Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy were chosen to be kings and queens. Even now, at the tender age of 42, I still like to check the back of a wardrobe – just in case!
But in this set of books, the children happen to be foster children, which brings an element of distrust to the characters, making the story much starker and very enjoyable.
So, who’s the book for? Well, teenagers for the most part although I suspect adults who enjoy ‘thoughtful’ fantasy will enjoy this too. There’s tons happening in this novel and plenty of twists to keep readers turning the page. I suspect there’ll be a third book in the set and I, for one, would be happy to read it.
A ‘Wishing Shelf’ Book Review www.thewsa.co.uk
THE DOOR – Reviewed By Peggy Jo Wipf for Readers’ Favorite – 5 Stars
M.D. Allen continues the tale of a group of teenagers who were transferred to the Inner Realm on their sixteenth birthday. The Door is the second book in the Matilda Seer series, adding more intensity and force to the first book, Matilda Seer. Ethan and Matilda have a connection that goes deeper than their matching birthmarks and second names. They question if they are related, but that trail is impossible to travel since all the Chosen are orphans living in foster care. Carter is tested in a huge way, as predicted in the first book, and everyone sees the young man he really is. The Watchers send away the seven Chosen to a school before their training begins. They make rash decisions when left alone, putting themselves in harm’s way. Will this school be the tool used to divide and conquer the teens?
The Door by M.D. Allen is one of the best “coming of age” books I have read in the fantasy genre. The author has a compelling plot about teens traveling to a different realm with magical gifts. The pace continues to increase as the characters face new challenges and additional danger. Through an intricate weaving of the characters, suspense, and peril, the author constructs a novel that will keep you hanging on from chapter to chapter, only to find you will need the next book. Though the novel focuses much on Ethan and Matilda, there are several key events that give this a refreshing edge. Did Carter leave the cottage willingly or was he kidnapped? Why must they attend a school when their lives are in danger? And who is the mysterious man in the Outer Realm that helps periodically? I hope you enjoy this mesmerizing book as much as I have. I look forward to the next book, The Four.