Release Date: September 4, 2011
Age: Young Adult
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Every 16-year old thinks they have the weight of the world on their shoulders. For Avery Kimball this was actually true…she just didn’t know it yet. Life for Avery was completely normal, attending school, hanging out with friends, and spending time with her family. Until the day she finds out that she and her four closest friends have a destiny that will take them far away from their comfortable and safe lives on Earth. Avery learns that she and her friends are actually a group of powerful warriors known as the Protectors, who were charged with protecting the planet of Orcatia, but were killed by the evil Emperor. To save their lives, their magical mentor sent them to Earth to be re-born. It is now their duty to return to the planet and life they have no memory of, and once again serve as its Protectors, fighting the very Emperor responsible for their deaths. Along the way, Avery must contend with battling malevolent creatures, her sometimes fragile relationships with her friends and fellow Protectors, her attraction to the mysterious King of Nightfell, and her own doubts and fears about who she truly is and who she can become.The Protectors is a fantasy story unlike those I have read before, it is very original and thorough. The story begins on a foreign plane, a planet called Orcatia. Immediately Paige Dooling jumps into action within the first page. The battle scenes present in the story are very well written and fast paced. When tragedy strikes the protector, their trainer and mentor (a gnome names Gumptin) chooses to send their spirits to Earth to be reborn.
On Earth, the 5 girls lead normal high school lives until the day their past catches up to them. At 16, the protectors have no memories of the warriors they used to be. They are human and leading human lives on Earth, but soon that changes and they must return to who they were born to be. All of the girls react exactly as expected when told about their destinies as protectors, they don't believe it. After some convincing they return to their true home and begin training as the protectors that the world needs.
The author does a great job giving every character in the book his or her own voice. It's like all of them had different writers, they're diverse and very relatable (which we all know is important). Jade, one of the protectors, was all tough words and bad attitude. I loved her. She brought spark to the story. Avery, while a natural born leader, is no longer the cruel girl she used to be. She is a caring and thoughtful leader who will surely do great things.
One thing I couldn't get past was the name Bunny for another one of the protectors. These girls are supposed to be warriors, the name just didn't feel to fit with the overall feel of the book. Bunny was also a character I felt lacked depth. The author hints at trouble with her, then makes nothing of it, at least not in this book (hopefully there will be elaboration in the books to come). Another character introduced in the story was the lonely king of Nightfell not much older than the girls. There's something between him and Avery, secrets and more, that aren't completely explained in book 1, but I'm sure they'll be more of him in the following editions, which is exciting because he seems like a very intense personality, not to mention handsome.
Once the story gets started, gets moving, and becomes intriguing, it's over. It's book 1 in the series and if you plan on reading it I would go ahead and get book 2 and 3 as well so that you don't have to suffer from withdraw from the story ;) It is a cliffhanger, the reader is left wondering what will happen next. Paige does an awesome job at pulling the reader in and trapping us in the world the protectors inhabit.
It's a good beginning book, to an interesting series that is sure to be full of action, adventure, love, and friendship. I wouldn't recommend it to everyone, but I will say that if you enjoy fantasy novels about strong female characters, check this one out! Thank you to the author for the opportunity to read and review this book!