Ben Arnold, hero of The Eidolon Chronicles: The Secret Country, always knew his mother’s family was different, but he didn’t know how different until he met Iggy, a worlds-exploring talking cat. Iggy reveals that Ben’s mother and uncle are from the royal family of Eidolon, the Shadow World, and Ben is in fact a prince.
What’s more, Ben’s uncle Old Creepie is stealing the magical creatures of Eidolon and selling them for profit on Earth, ignoring the fact that they cannot survive on magic-less Earth. Ben’s mother, who is connected to Eidolon through her royal heritage, weakens every time he succeeds in selling an animal, and unless Ben does something to stop his uncle, she will die.
But the conspiracy goes deeper than that. When Ben heads to Eidolon with a rescued selkie and a dragon, he discovers that the Dogman is helping Old Creepie to get revenge on Ben’s mother for an old argument. When she’s gone, he intends to become the queen of Eidolon. With this menace and his uncle against him, how can Ben save Eidolon or his mother?
The Eidolon Chronicles: The Secret Country is an offbeat fantasy that has a creepy edge throughout. Author/editor Jane Johnson writes well, but I was unsatisfied with it overall as it seems a little formulaic and has a cliffhanger ending.