BOOK REVIEW: The Rithmatist by Brandon Sanderson
Joel goes to a really posh and expensive high school, tuition paid for via a contract his late father had with the school. The school, Armedius, teaches "regular" rich students as well as Rithmatists, those who have been chosen by the Maker. Their chalk drawings come to life, within the rules of Rithmatism. They battle with chalk drawings, drawing circular or elliptical or square defenses around themselves. They can draw creatures that come to life (looking like a walking chalk drawing, called Chalkings) and attack their opponent's defense lines...or their opponent. All to train to fight the wild Chalkings at Nebrask that struggle to break free and ravage the surrounding islands.
Joel, who wants to be a Rithmatist so badly but wasn't incepted, helps solve the mystery of why students have been disappearing from his school. There's mystery, there's suspense and of course a girl, Melanie, a Rithmatist with weak drawing skills. The two become unlikely friends and team up to try and save the day.
I look forward to the next book! I loved the exciting early 20th century world without electricity and wind-up metal trains and horses. A world close enough to ours to not have to think too much yet unique enough to stir the imagination. A fun and quick 378 page read. Rated PG-13 for some slightly graphic images (Chalklings entering a girl's mouth and sucking her body dry, a little blood at crime scenes). Besides that the book is clean. 4.4 stars.