The Land of Stories: Beyond the Kingdoms, by Chris Colfer
Review by Emily Neumann
The Masked Man is on the loose and it is up to Alex and Conner Bailey to stop him. The only thing standing in their way is that Alex has been thrown off the Fairy Council because no one will believe that the whole Fairytale World is in danger. To help them is only the ragtag group of Goldilocks, Jack, Red Riding Hood, Mother Goose, and her gander, Lester. Along the way, the Bailey twins discover the Mask Man’s secret: He possesses an extraordinarily powerful magic potion that turns every book it touches into a portal of that story! As the twins reveal more of his plan, they discover he is recruiting an army of literature’s greatest villains. So begins the chase to catch to catch the Masked Man and go through the enchanted land of Oz, the incredible world of Neverland, the absurdity of Wonderland, and Beyond. Can Alex and Connor catch up to the Masked Man or will they always be one step behind them until it’s too late?
The fourth book of the Land of Stories was a superb way of extending this magnificent series! The suspense of this story was outstanding when Alex and Conner raced through each world trying to capture the Masked Man and avoid being killed. I loved how Chris Colfer took the stories that the Bailey twins were trapped in from books that everyone could relate to. For example, when Alex and Conner were trapped in Neverland with Peter Pan, I could easily visualize where they were because I’ve read Peter Pan. I felt that his excellent idea made me feel more connected to the world surrounding them because I have read every single one of those stories. He also did an amazing job of describing each of the worlds and the characters in them. For instance, when they traveled into the Land of Oz, I could comfortably picture the Queen of Hearts because the identifying words that described her. After each chapter, I just couldn’t stop diving into the next part of the story. It only took me two days to finish this brilliant 400 page fantasy! I very highly recommend this book and all the other books in this series to anyone waiting to dive into a majestic story.