Ewan Pendle and the White Wraith by Shaun Hume
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I was given this book by the author in exchange for an honest review.
This was a decent read, but I would have liked it more if it hadn’t been pitched as something especially for Harry Potter fans. Now I couldn’t do anything but compare it to Harry Potter and sadly it falls short.
The story is very Harry Potter-ish. A boy without parents goes to a special school where he makes some friends and there is a mystery to be solved. The school even have “common rooms” and “houses” (but with different names). It is not just the world that has things in common with Harry Potter, the story is pushed forward in some similar ways as well. For example, in Philosopher’s Stone the trio finds out about the stone from The Daily Prophet, in this book the main characters find out about the white wraith from The London Lectern (also a newspaper). Since Ewan Pendle is set in today’s world (at least I think it is) why didn’t they use the internet? That is just one example, there are more.
However, the characters were really good, I especially liked Enid, a pirate girl. She was badass from the beginning and she didn’t lose the badassness even after becoming more friendly with Ewan and Mathilde. I was so glad to see that! It is always scary when an awesome, and somewhat ruff around the edges, character becomes friends with people. There is quite a risk of them becoming too soft (due to “character development”).
Ewan himself was interesting to follow. He’s a bit naive at times (which is understandable, he’s 11) but he has such a big heart and reaches out to other outsiders. He is such a good role model and gives everyone a chance (even if they walk around barefoot all the time or have a tattoo on their face).
In conclusion, the story could have been more original and given some more work, but the characters are this story’s strong point. I might pick up another book about these characters when/if released, and I do hope another story will be published.
“Ewan Pendle was weird. Really weird. At least, that’s what everyone told him. Then again, being able to see monsters that no one else could wasn’t exactly normal …
Thinking he has been moved off to live with his eleventh foster family, Ewan is instead told he is a Lenitnes, one of an ancient race of peoples who can alone see the real ‘Creatures’ which inhabit the earth. He is taken in by Enola, the mysterious sword carrying Grand Master of Firedrake Lyceum, a labyrinth of halls and rooms in the middle of London where other children, just like Ewan, go to learn the ways of the Creatures.”