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Reviewed by Melinda Hills for Readers' Favorite
Identified by prophecy but hidden by strong magic, Christopher grows up unaware of the destiny that awaits him in Bound to Survive: The Magic Within (Book One) by Sharon Gibbs. The land of Solencia struggles under the tyrannical rule of Arnak and his sorceress sister, Athena. Once prosperous, the land and people suffer because of Arnak’s quest for vengeance. The time has come for The One, Christopher, to accept his role as leader of the people. Henry, Christopher’s grandfather, and his old friend, Clarence, the two remaining wizards of the land, have prepared for this day and, with the help of a hopeful population, they all set out to take back control of their land. As Christopher embraces the role of leader, it is clear that the ancient prophecy is about to be fulfilled. The only hope is that this newly formed army is in time to defeat the evil forces of Arnak before Christopher loses someone who has become quite important in his life.
While there is certainly an element of the supernatural that directs the course of this story, the true power behind the characters in Bound to Survive is love. It is the intense love of his grandfather and the couple who raised him that has supported Christopher until the right time for him to make his own decision about the future. Powerful emotions drive Christopher, Elle, and their friends to finally band together to rid their land of a tyrant. The captivating plot moves along steadily with plenty of intense action and intrigue. The 'good' characters are refreshing and the 'bad guys' are all the more believable for the background that supports their misguided quest. Sharon Gibbs has masterfully blended past and present, as well as love and hate, into a spellbinding story that is almost impossible to put down.