Recommendation: **** (4-stars)
Positives: I loved this fast-paced and riveting story! I really enjoyed the realistic relationships between the siblings. They love each other, but boy can they get mad with each other! The characters were well developed and it was great to see and understand their personalities. The gadgets they use are really fun and it liked the drawings of the Phoenix and the visual glossary in the back. I also thoroughly enjoyed the Blauwe Menson (the Blue People)! They were so cool! I cannot wait to read the rest of the series!
Talking Points: Actions have consequences. In this story Austin and Mason disobey their brother and leave the Phoenix when they are not supposed to. This action has consequences! In the story, we don't even know or understand all the consequences these actions might have and in life we don't always think clearly about the consequences we or others may face for our actions. God promises that with disobedience comes discipline. The Old Testament is full of stories of people who disobeyed and the consequences they suffered (Achan in Josh. 7, Moses in Num. 20, Lot's wife in Gen. 19, David in 2 Sam. 11-12). Our actions also affect others. We need to carefully consider actions and words, regarding others as more important than ourselves (Philp. 2:1-8). Jesus' actions took us into consideration! Are we, like Jesus, willing to suffer temporarily here on this earth so that others might gain eternal life? Our actions speak loudly about what and who we truly love and value. We may not see the results of our actions today, we may never know or understand the pain or joy we have caused another, but we must carefully consider how our actions affect others and their view of Jesus Christ.
Age Level: 10 years of age and up