Will Wilder #1: The Relic of Perilous Falls Reviews

UPDATE TIME: 2017-07-05 
Review Score: 4 out of 5 star From 171 user ratings

"I liked the pacing, varied emotions driving the story, and the complex characters. Over all I thought it was a good book.

I was disappointed to find this was book 1 of 7 books. These series get old and tire me out. So although I did like this book, I wood have preferred no more than 3 books to tell this one. I am not planing on reading anymore of this series.

I was never sure if the author was making fun of religion, or if he was just using it for inspiration, or if he was trying to make a point and be a missionary of sorts.

I listened to the audiobook read by the author, so instead of feeling offended by his tone and misinterpreting his meaning... his reading helped me understand some of his intent more. The religion had a strange vibe to it. But I thought the story, characters, and writing was done well.
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"If you have always felt the need to know what it would be like if Indiana Jones taught catechism, then I guess this is the book for you. If you've never needed to know that, this book is skippable.

It's not terrible, but it's not anything special. No character sticks out as particularly endearing or compelling. The plot is take-it-or-leave it. The adventure and action is dull. The creatures really just made me think that I was watching an episode of Primeval (but watching that TV series would be a better use of your chill time than this

I hear the author writes great analyses of Catholic doctrine and the like. Perhaps he should stick to that, and stay out of the children's market. Maybe his non-fiction is good, but I'm not Maybe this book would be more desirable to Catholic children. But, again, I'm not Catholic (or a child)
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"Not quite what I expected at all. Still a great adventure. Listened from Audible and absolutely love the way Raymond reads his characters' voices.
Story revolved around a boy who is able to see demons and spirits. His aunt, discovering his gift, begins to 'train' him and introduce him to her father's prophecy. Of course the boy gets his friends involved in a death defying maze and cause more trouble then they bargained for.
I felt some of the setting descriptions where hard to picture and could have been done a bit better.
Good read and kept me interested. Ending obviously expecting more. Would read the next book.
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"I'm not going to pretend to be some great book reviewer, so here goes nothing.

I really like Raymond Arroyo which is why I ordered the book in the first place and I REALLY wanted to like it.

But after reading, frankly, it was meh.

It seems like the type of book that someone with no religion and who isn't easily offended by the mention of God or the saints could enjoy as well as religious people. It had a certain feel to it that reminded me of the Seven Wonders (by Peter Lerangis) which I guess is a good thing?

The book just wasn't my style and I put it down easily. I liked the characters and the plot but towards the end it felt dull and forced.

It wasn't bad, but it wasn't toooo good either. You can choose to look at it from a religious point or choose to believe that this is like Percy Jackson and everything in the story is made up. It works either way for me. And that's a good thing since it appeals to more audience.

The ending stopped abruptly, which I actually did not mind since it caught me off guard and actually made me wonder what would happen next.

In conclusion, meh.
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"Arroyo, Raymond Will Wilder: The Relic of Perilous Falls, 314 pages, Crown Books for Young Readers (Random), $16.99, Language: PG(3 swears 0 “f”); Mature Content: PG; Violence: PG.

Will is a 12 year old who can’t get enough out of life. When he falls off a donkey and gets punished, he starts to learn about the relic of Perilous Falls. Then his aunt starts to tell him about how his great-grandfather founded the town and hid the relic in the church. The story captivates Will and he is convinced by a Captain to hike down and retrieve the relic. There is only one question that remains. Can Will find the relic and save the town from the evil that lurks in it, or will the town be covered in water, never to be found again?

I really liked this book. It gave me a new perspective on stranger danger and who you should trust. Will got into all this trouble because he trusted the wrong person. Mature content is PG because it talks about Will’s religion and Will and his friends are talking about what they believe in. Violence is PG because it is talking about demons being disintegrated and dying and people being injured.

MS - ESSENTIAL. Student Reviewer: JM(7th grade)
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"This is a fun little read. It's also intense. Know that. Out of curiosity, I read it before passing it along to my sons. I'm glad I did. This one doesn't hold back. It is about out-and-out spiritual warfare. Belief vs. Unbelief. Feeling your stomach in your throat and STILL doing what has to be done. There are demons out there trying to eat you and drag you down.

Arroyo keeps it tense but things do work out in the end. Phew! It's a middle-grade thriller!

After reading it, I'm passing it along to one son. He's immune to heart-stopping fear in books. He can toss a book over the side of his bed and promptly fall to sleep after any scene. He's all for digging into this one.

Our other son is more like me. Things he reads can keep him up at night, so he has to tone it down. Though this second son (the scaredy cat like me) is in the right target age group for this book, he'll wait a while before tucking in with this one. We may also approach this one at some point as a family read-aloud. Or, it may make a good summer daytime read for this guy, so we can talk about it together, and he's not reading it at bedtime.

Don't put this book aside because of my review. Read it for yourself. It's a page-turner. Then decide. You know your kids well.
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"This book has been compared to Percy Jackson, and I can see why. It's pretty fast paced, has a snarky twelve-year-old boy for it's main character, and involves religion. In some ways, the fact that Catholicism is treated in a similar way as ancient-Greek-paganism fills me with nervousness. If you're writing a book pretending that the Greek gods exist then it's not hard to create all sorts of magical items and such that fit into that world. I am Catholic, and I understand things that this book referred to such as describing relics as 'keys to faith,' but it makes me nervous that (view spoiler)" said.

"Great stuff warred with uncomfortable stuff warred with stuff that made no sense.

It's another one of those "Here are huge secrets that nobody could help but believe that could easily destroy the whole world that people ought to be prepared for and guard against that we keep totally secret BECAUSE REASONS. Here are valuable artifacts that could easily change the entire world for better that we keep locked away BECAUSE WE SAY SO. Here are mystical powers that anybody could have one of that could keep humanity safe and revolutionize the world that we will never tell anyone about BECAUSE 'Y' IS A CROOKED LETTER AND YOU OUGHT TO KNOW BETTER, OKAY? QUIT ASKING QUESTIONS!"

If that was the only problem, it would still be a good book. (Why is there a massive secret booby trap in the crypt under the cathedral? Surely some test of purety of heart instead of "have you read this text?" would be better at keeping the riffraff out? Why don't they just show people what these artifacts do? Even if some people didn't believe them, a whole lot would! These people could then be trained! Who were the approximately 1,000 specialist workmen it would have taken to build all these complex traps and secret tunnels anyway, and why don't they just tell anyone how the traps they made work...or you know, mention -- ever -- the project they and 999 others have been spending the last six months on? Who rebuilds the astonishing mosiac floor after every time it falls away as part of the challenge, anyhow? How was all this stuff financed? Why in a digital world are there monster attacks repeatedly in places filled with people and lots of eyewitnesses and nobody ever whips out a phone and films or takes a picture? Why not warn people, "Hey, monsters in the river?")

It had a lot of good.
I still might have kept reading if it wasn't about catholic artifacts, scriptures, 'people who were close to God' ... and the main character is a particularly unworthy hero. He cheats, lies, grumbles, is ungrateful, steals, flouts legitimate authority, makes life-threatening bets, is selfish, etc, without a twinge of conscience. I'm not asking for a saint here. But many books have heroes with particularly good intentions (even the pickpockets) ...this kid is sub-average. And then he's supposed to be some golden destined hero come to lead the forces of light. It just doesn't work.

The writing is good, the action is crisp and exciting, the older characters are really cool. It's a great set-up and fun world building.
Oh, well.
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