The Oasis King

Author: Mark David Pullen

Publisher: Morgan James Fiction

Release Date: February 28, 2023

Rating: 4 out of 5.

A cross between Narnia and Journey to the Center of the Earth (movie, not the book,) made for a great fantasy adventure book for young readers.

Dylan, Jack, and Tripp are cousins spending a week at their grandmother’s farm. As they are out exploring, they are transported away to the Valley of the Oasis, a land unlike anything they are used to. In this strange land, they find creatures extinct in their world, talking animals and Tripp’s father, Martin, who has been missing since before he was born. Martin and his dogs have been pursued by a Stranger with green skin and other odd features that seems to be from another time and place. As the boys stick close to Martin, they work together to try and find a way to get them all back home.

With elements of both Narnia and the Journey to the Center of the Earth movie, this book made for a fun adventure for younger readers. I would say this book was good, not great, but also not bad. For such a short fantasy novel, Pullen did a pretty good job of setting up this different world we find our characters in but left me with several questions about the world; how they actually ended up there, since the boys’ method was different than Martin and what is to come next. I understand his thought process of keeping it short to attract young hesitant readers but there was a lot left unanswered and several head scratching moments. I don’t want a fantasy book that is super hard to understand, but also need this new world to make sense which I felt was lacking here. This is the start of a series and I am looking forward to seeing what is coming next for these characters and hopefully seeing the Oasis world built up more and expanded in a way to make the story come together fully. I would recommend this to young readers that enjoy fantasy but don’t want a 500 page book that is full of words they won’t understand.

I received a complimentary copy of this title from the publisher.  The views and opinions expressed within are my own.

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