Wednesday, July 30, 2014

The Pendragon Adventure Book 9: Raven Rise Discussion [Summer Reading Challenge]

Hey, y'all! I'm here with another summer reading challenge post! I'm continuing on with my July challenge: The Pendragon Adventure!

Series Info

Since this series is a little less well-known than the other series in my Summer Reading Challenge, I decided to discuss the premise of the series as a whole. The Pendragon Adventure is a 10 book series centered around our main character, Bobby, and his adventures through multiple dimensions (or territories, as they're called in the books). The books are told from a dual perspective. Our main perspective is of Bobby, told in first-person through journals which he sends to his best friend to keep a record of what is happening. The secondary perspective is of Bobby's best friend, Mark, and pseudo-girlfriend, Courtney, who receive the journals and go through their own problems on Earth. The majority of the books focus on a single territory each, as Bobby travels there to thwart the evil Saint Dane.

Book Summary
As always, remember not to read this if you haven't read the previous books in the series, because this summary will probably spoil you for any books that came before this one!

Bobby Pendragon believes that it is over. He has trapped both himself and Saint Dane on Veelox, seemingly stopping Saint Dane from completing his plans. But what he doesn't know is that while he's isolated on the island of Ibara, Halla is falling apart. The battle has moved to his home territory of Second Earth, and Saint Dane's Convergence seems to be underway. Is it too late to save Halla?

Overall Thoughts

Non-spoiler section!

I don't know how I feel about this book. Well, I guess I do, but I'm not sure why. And why is a pretty important factor in this situation. Although I ended up really loving The Pilgrims of Rayne even though I remembered disliking it, the same can't really be said for Raven Rise. I mentioned in my last post that I really disliked the turn that the last few books took. And after re-reading Raven Rise, I'm finding that I feel the same way. However, as I said, I'm not sure why I dislike it. I'm not sure whether I dislike it because I'm so frustrated with how calculated and well thought out Saint Dane is and how he's winning the upper hand or because I genuinely don't think that this is the way I think the series should go.

I think that's the epitome of my struggle with the last few books in this series. I have a hard time figuring out whether I don't like it because I hate that Saint Dane is getting the upper hand, or if the Convergence legitimately takes the series in a direction that was totally out of left field and doesn't fit with the rest of the series. I think it's probably a combination. I feel that although I like the book, my emotions toward it go more toward appreciation rather than liking.  Maybe I just crave the simplicity of the one territory per book plotline. As I said, I'm not quite sure how I feel about it. Hopefully, my thoughts are more coherent in the wrap-up.

I also worry that my opinions of this book might be slightly clouded by my opinions on The Soldiers of Halla. A very confusing and (for me) extremely memorable scene occurs at the end of Raven Rise, and it prompts this big explanation about Travelers in The Soldiers of Halla, and I distinctly remember not being satisfied with that explanation at all... and I feel like that's partially clouding my opinion of Raven Rise.

I also feel like Raven Rise is a lot choppier than any of the other books. Usually, we get a nice back and forth between Bobby's POV and Mark & Courtney's. In Raven Rise, however, we have Alder, Mark & Courtney, Patrick, and Bobby. Just when we get into one story, we're bounced to another.

As far as rating, I'm a little torn, which makes sense since I don't exactly know how I feel. I do feel that it's one of the more intricate and well-constructed Pendragon books, so I'll give it 4.25-4.5 stars because of that.  More accurate rating TBD in my wrap-up.

Spoilery Discussion!

If I were to choose one word to explain this book, I think it would be confusing. All the changes occurring with Halla because of the Convergence had me really confused. Especially the timelines. It seemed sometimes like Nevva and Saint Dane would have to be in multiple different places at once for their plans to work out. The changes to Second Earth kept me confused, as did the changes to Third Earth.

I'm also kinda getting tired of Saint Dane's plans always working out just how he wanted them. Even when Bobby thinks he's doing something that's finally going to take Saint Dane by surprise, he's playing right into Saint Dane's plans! There's no way he could plan this whole elaborate scheme so perfectly to know exactly how Bobby will react to events.

Also, that scene at the end with all the Travelers showing up in this desolate wasteland... huh? I know it's explained early on in The Soldiers of Halla, but I can't remember the explanation, so right now nothing makes sense. I'm confused.

Sorry this discussion is totally incoherent, but I think I'll have my thoughts together for the last book.

Favorite Quotes

Page 116: "I'm not your friend."
"Yes, of course. I hope that by now you understand exactly where our differences lie."
"I do. I'm trying to protect the territories, and you're trying to kill everyone. I've had that one down for a while now."

Page 432: I grabbed Alder's arm and squeezed. "You're my brother. There's nobody I'd rather be here with. Actually, I'd rather not be here at all, but since I am, I'm glad you are too."

Page 446: "How many of those suits do you have? Do you like, send them to the laundry, or just toss 'em out and put on a new one when it gets all gamey?"
Saint Dane chuckled. I amused him. 
"Does it matter?" he asked.
"It was a joke, idiot." On top of everything else wrong with him, Saint Dane didn't have much of a sense of humor. Except when I amused him. Which happened a lot, I'm sorry to say.
"I'm glad to see that you're in a good mood. You should be. Our struggle has finally come to an end. Perhaps we should celebrate."
"Perhaps you should bite me."

Page 458: "There will be no more protests. No more dissension. No more violence. There will be only one voice. The voice of Ravinia. The voice of Halla. Your voice."
"There goes freedom of speech," I said.
Saint Dane didn't react.

So, there you go, that's all for this summer reading post! Have you read the Pendragon series? What do you think of the series? Let me know in the comments!

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