In The Name Of The Otherworld is a young adult fantasy story. The main protagonists are fourteen-years-old and I would say that this story is suited to the younger end of the young adult genre, or even older children.
The story revolves around Alexandria, an orphan, who can make odd things happen, especially when she feels very emotional. She is teased and bullied at school, even named as a witch by some. One day she and three school friends are lured into a magical fountain and are transported to a place called the Otherworld. Here she meets her real parents, the king and queen, and she learns of a quest that she must go on to save it from the evil leaders of the Underworld.
Alexandria and her three friends discover that they are descendants of four founders of the magical world, and they are bestowed special gifts to help them during the quest. They set off with two Elders, adults from the magical world, who will train them in the art of warfare and help them tackle the dangers they meet on their journey.
The author has had lots of fun creating this magical world; she has embraced elements of her favourite fantasy stories, I was particularly reminded of the Harry Potter stories and Alice’s adventures in Wonderland. Some of my favourite parts in this story were the animals and the magical skills of the four girls.
The chapters are written from the points of view of differing characters; however, all the characters had the same ‘voice’ and any differences in character did not come across. Another area which I thought could use a bit more thought were the descriptive passages of the settings, not all, but some were too detailed and made me want to skip past them.
There’s lots to praise about this book, as it has some good moral lessons and there is nothing dark or frightening, so it is well suited to the younger reader. I wish the author well in her writing journey; I’m sure with more experience she will develop her own writing style to enhance her prose.
Regarded as a witch and alienated by the majority of her peers, fourteen-year-old orphan Alexandria Richardson wants to be anybody but herself. However, this all changes one day, when the mysterious fountain in her school transports her and her three classmates to a world of magic— the Otherworld. The four of them are brought to the palace of the Otherworld on the rulers’ orders, and the shocking truth of Alexandria’s identity and parentage is revealed. As Alexandria then participates in a miraculous adventure with her companions, she explores the depths of courage, kindness, and friendship. But will she make it safely back to the Otherworld? Or will she eventually yield to her biggest enemy, someone no other than herself?
It’s not just an adventure. It’s a journey of growth and redemption.