Summary (Via Goodreads): An epic battle between good and evil…
Before he knew about the Roses, 16-year-old Jack lived an unremarkable life in the small Ohio town of Trinity. Only the medicine he has to take daily and the thick scar above his heart set him apart from the other high schoolers. Then one day Jack skips his medicine. Suddenly, he is stronger, fiercer, and more confident than ever before. And it feels great – until he loses control of his own strength and nearly kills another player during soccer team tryouts.
Soon, Jack learns the startling truth about himself: he is Weirlind, part of an underground society of magical people who live among us. At their helm sits the feuding houses of the Red Rose and the White Rose, whose power is determined by playing The Game – a magical tournament in which each house sponsors a warrior to fight to the death. The winning house rules the Weir.
As if his bizarre heritage isn’t enough, Jack finds out that he’s not just another member of Weirlind – he’s one of the last of the warriors – at a time when both houses are scouting for a player.
My Thoughts: I was recommended this book from a friend who basically explained that it is a mash up between Harry Potter and Percy Jackson, so of course I decided to start reading it and I really enjoyed the book. The main character, Jack Swift; is your standard YA protagonist and I would describe him sort of like an older version of Percy Jackson. I also liked that his friends are also a part of the adventure. I also like his aunt Linda who serves as his “Obi-Wan” in the first book and trains him for the tournament.
There is a little romance between Jack and Ellen, but is pretty well developed and there is a twist, that most probably saw coming.
The book also does a good job setting up a fantasy universe within a modern day setting, which are books that I really like. Also setting up the major conflict that happens throughout the rest of the series.
It was a great first book that got me excited to read the rest of the series.