By M.T. Anderson
Scholastic Books, $6.99, 260 pages

In the spirit of Jumanji, The Game of Sunken Places takes you on an adventurous ride into a dark forest of other worlds. Gregory Buchanan and his friend Brian Thatz, go to visit his strange Uncle Max. They discover a game board with a timer and unintentionally set the game in motion. No one can tell them the rules of this game they have to play and Uncle Max seems mentally unable. The boys must do this alone and figure The Game out on their own, discovering along the way that others have tried and failed to the point of death. The Game is for real. This suspenseful tale of riddles to solve, a troll to pass, demons to evade, kings to save, and a nemesis to overcome is exciting and will keep the hair on the back of your neck standing. Author M.T. Anderson offers many plot twists, innovative creatures, and other worlds to explore. Before coming to a close, the book cleverly offers a “Question and Answer” with the author, and an excerpt of his next creative adventure with Brian and Gregory, The Suburb Beyond the Stars.

Reviewed by M. Chris Johnson,