This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every moring: great is thy faithfulness. The Lord is my portion saith my soul: therefore will I hope in him. The Lord is good unto them that wait for Him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD. Lamentations 3: 21-26

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Sentinel: City of Destiny--A Review

Sentinel: City of Destiny

Sentinel: City of Destiny by Landel Bilbrey

Recently, I received a request to review this book from the author. As the mother of two young sons I am always looking for age appropriate books for them to read or for us to share together. I visited Mr. Bilbrey’s website to find out more about his story. Of course once I read the premise for Sentinel I had to read it for myself to learn more.

From the author’s notes about the book:

One enemy.

Two brothers.

And a perilous quest in search of four mystical keys …

Keys that will unlock the gate of Sentinel, the timeless city of destiny—the place that all followers of the Light must one day find. Only true warriors of good King Deus can call it home.

From Gelandesprung, through the mysterious forest of Gravenwood, across the barren plain of Gall, and beyond the burning sands of Mammon, they will travel. But traveling will be only half their journey, for hidden throughout the regions of Callow are the keys. And to complete their mission into Sentinel, they will need all four. Even if the valiant brothers should find the hallowed walls that surround the city, without the keys their struggle will be for naught.

But Azrael awaits. Driven by an ancient vow to stop any boy from entering the sacred city. His plans are evil, his minions are many, and his aim is sure… Keep all seekers, at all costs, from finding the royal keys.

Even so, they embark. They search. And, eventually… One of them will fight to take hold of what is rightfully his—a place of honor at the mighty king's table.

I slowly worked my way through Sentinel. Not because it was a difficult read. It is not; it is a great match for young readers and is suggested for 8 and over. I took my time to savor the story, to hear the words and let them work in my heart and feel how they would affect my sons. I’ve enjoyed the book immensely and have been moved by the story.

Sentinel is the story of two brothers on the path to manhood. The journey is fraught with toil and trial. There are opportunities to earn honor and rewards but with those opportunities also come the possibility of failure and sorrow.

The brothers are twins; they have been raised with the same opportunities, the same education, the same loving and devoted parents. But they do not make the same choices, and therefore find themselves separated not long into the journey. They both face peril at every turn. Do their paths end at the same the same door?

Sentinel: City of Destiny can be many things. It is foremost a wonderful story, an unashamed allegory. There is no question of the message that the author intended. It can be used as a language arts tool. The vocabulary is supported by the Glossary at the end. There is a question and answer series at the end that will help with comprehension, Finally it is a devotional. The same question and answer portion is a study guide that could be completed by an older child alone, but would be even better as a discussion starter for the young reader and the parent.

As I read this book my oldest kept checking over my shoulder to see how far along I was.

“Gee, Mom, that looks interesting.” “It is, dear.”

“Is it an okay book for boys?” “Well, yes as a matter of fact, it is.”

“Mom, do you think I might be able to read it when you are done?” “I am sure that you can.”

“Mom? Are you done yet?”

Guess who gets to start a new book tomorrow.

Visit Mr. Bilbrey’s website. You can check out resources for parents, teachers and children. Sentinel: City of Destiny is available from Amazon, Borders, Barnes & Nobel and directly from the author.

A great book, a super gift for any young man. I highly recommend it.

Elise at A Path Made Straight is the lovely hostess of Children's Book Monday. I am hopping on over to put this review on her Mr. Linky. Visit Elise and all the great bloggers who join her for Children's Book Monday.


Martie said...

Sounds absolutly wonderful. I will have to check into this one for my James - who is 9. Sounds like one he would like to read.


Renee's Reading Corner said...

This sounds great! Just what my two boys will enjoy! Thanks for sharing.

Heidi @ GGIP said...

Great review!

Anonymous said...

I got this book as well, and I love it too! I will review it soon. I think it is perfect for parents and sons to read together. What great discussions it would spark!

luvmy4sons said...

Sounds like a great book for my boys! I love it! I will check for sure every Monday. I love getting book ideas.

Mariposa said...

I may have to check this book out...sounds interesting!

freetofly said...

Great review, coming here is like try before you buy!

Kim said...

My hope for my students is that they will embrace reading, so they might take to heart the myriad life lessons available in the pages of a book. Much less painful is a lesson learned through reading than through the scars left from learning by doing.

This sounds like a great book to teach life lessons.

Elise said...

We bought this for Christmas for Corban, who is eight. He is loving it- I highly recommend it right along with you! Thanks for reviewing this new treasure!