Reading/Interest Level: Intermediate, Young Adult
Author: Michael Grant
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
In this suspenseful, gripping tale, the Messenger of Fear inflicts an awful cat and mouse game upon unsuspecting victims, who may or may not deserve their worst fears coming true. In the most recent game, Mara, a young girl, wakes up in an eerie, misty field with no recollection of how she got there. She soon learns that she has been chosen as the Messenger’s apprentice, to help him guide his twisted game. If those chosen to play lose, their worst fears will become reality. Mara feels like a pawn rather than an apprentice in the Messenger’s creepy game, but she plays along out of fear for the unknown. Mara struggles to understand her role in this game of good and evil and hopes that she will not be found on the losing side when it is all over.
Messenger of Fear provides a great sense of mystery coupled with horror and distress. Overall, the book is gripping and unpredictable and the tests the character must pass are creative and unique. The characters are full-bodied, but still have a bit of mystery about them. The description and detail made the story more real and more horrifying. The story is rather dark and will cause readers to reflect on what their definition of justice is. It may also be great for a twisted lesson of the consequences of evil and negativity. It is an easy and fast read, but a great introduction to the rest of the series. Like something out of a Goosebumps book, this book is chilling and will leave it readers uneasy till the end. The conclusion provides clarity and a better understanding of the game and why everything happened. Michael Grant has written a phenomenal story where the characters feel real and the antagonist is horrifying.
*Contains severe graphic content that young readers may find mentally and emotionally horrifying.