Honour's Rest

The Rite Way Book 1

Young Adult - Fantasy - General
281 Pages
Reviewed on 11/01/2021
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Tammy Ruggles for Readers' Favorite

Honour's Rest (The Rite Way Book 1) by Judith Crow is an energetic, engrossing YA fantasy novel that will satisfy any Harry Potter fan looking for new characters and a new novelist to fall in love with. It starts with a bang. Young Pen is blamed for pushing a school bully into the pond, but he wasn't there. He was in the library. Is it magic? Does he have powers? If so, what does this mean for Pen and his family when it dawns on them that he has The Rite? His Uncle Napier may have some answers and assistance, so his parents send him there for guidance on managing his new skill, The Rite. His uncle heads The Rite in the UK and has a lot of enemies that could turn his nephew against him.

Crow has crafted an immensely entertaining and absorbing story for those looking for something fresh in the YA fantasy genre. The characters are lively and personable, and you feel an instant connection with Pen. I like that the author doesn't serve the story to her readers all at once--she dishes it out one suspenseful scene at a time. Often we aren't aware of what lies just around the corner, and young readers love this. There are plenty of tricks and surprises to keep you invested. The writing has the feeling of crackling electricity, and you'll want to follow the plot to the end. The friendships and relationships are important and well-written in this novel, so much so that adults will find it as intriguing as young readers. This story is dialogue-driven, the characters well-developed, and the plot isn't bogged down by the narrative, although it is just as strong. Readers will appreciate that Crow respects them by not talking down to them or over their heads. For an exciting novel about magic, friendship, and adventure, Honour's Rest by Judith Crow is a must-read.

Pikasho Deka

Honour's Rest is the first installment of The Rite Way, a young adult fantasy series written by Judith Crow. Fourteen-year-old Pendragon Devon is facing expulsion after allegedly pushing a classmate into the school pond, leading his parents to send him to his eccentric Uncle Napier's castle, Honour's Nest, in a remote countryside town in northern Scotland. Upon arriving at Honour's Nest, Napier soon informs Pen that he has the power of Rite, the ability to harness one's motives from the unknown. As the Rendelf of the United Kingdom, Napier begins to train Pen for his role alongside another teenager named Marley, who trains to become Pen's deputy. When a powerful Knave's Thaumaturge, Isolde, attacks Pen and his friends seeking revenge, Pen must rise to the occasion and be ready to pay the ultimate price.

A tale soaked in lore, mystery, and supernatural powers, author Judith Crow's Honour's Rest is the perfect start to The Rite Way series. The concept of Knave's Thaumaturge and Just Thaumaturge provides a unique twist to the premise of a young adult fantasy series with protagonists who display supernatural abilities. The author takes a while to set the characters and the plot, but after about sixty pages, the pacing picks up significantly and sprints through the action from there. The characters are well-fleshed out, with complex motives and agency to drive their actions. I found Pen and Napier's relationship absolutely riveting. For some reason, it reminded me of Harry and Dumbledore's dynamic in The Order of the Phoenix. Recommended to young adult fantasy lovers.

Vincent Dublado

The first book in The Rite Way series by Judith Crow is titled Honour’s Rest. This new series introduces you to the world of Pendragon Devon, who starts out as an ordinary boy like all gifted and chosen ones do. The story immediately puts him in a quandary as two paramedics help a school bully into an ambulance after an accident. In his defense, he had nothing to do with it, as he was far from the incident when it took place. His family begins to realize that he possesses the Rite, which gives the ability to harness the unknown and mold it into something that only the wielder and certain others can understand. To educate him in controlling his abilities, he is sent to his Uncle Napier, a Rendelf who oversees the Rite’s use and ensures that balance is kept. But Napier has enemies lurking and waiting to pounce at the right moment—and they will get to Pen in order to break him.

I enjoyed Honour’s Rest’s relatable themes of family, responsibility, and most of all grief, which is the most unpleasant emotion in any household. So many young adult fantasies err on the side of too much sentimentality and fall short of making sympathetic characters. But Judith Crow keeps it balanced, and you will fully understand what is going on at every given moment. Sure, you will find many clichés typical among young adult fantasy stories, but you can also expect Crow to respect your intelligence by letting you explore the themes without spoonfeeding you. Honour’s Rest is a brilliant display of prose, confidently written by someone who understands the magic of storytelling. This is a highly recommended read for anyone looking to get into a spellbinding story that will stay with you perhaps for a long time.

Anne-Marie Reynolds

Honour's Rest by Judith Crow is the first book in The Rite Way series. Pendragon Devon, Pen to his friends, is accused of pushing the school bully into the pond but he wasn’t there. Pen was in the library, studying when it happened. But Pen has a magical ability called The Rite and when his family discovers this, they send him to his uncle to learn how to control it. But this is no ordinary magical ability and Pen won't have an easy time of it. His Uncle Napier is also the Rendelf in charge of the UK Rite and that kind of responsibility doesn’t make everyone your friend. As Napier’s enemies gather, they have just one thought in mind – to use Pen to bring down the Rendelf. Can Pen resist them and defeat the darkness?

Honour’s Rest by Judith Crow is reminiscent of the Harry Potter books; a young boy with magical abilities using them to defeat evil. This is a magical story, packed with action and lots of twists and turns that keep you hanging on, desperate to find out what happens next. The main characters are very well developed into likable people and there are plenty of well-written dialogs, written in an easy-to-follow manner. The story follows our main protagonist as he learns of his skills, develops them, and uses them to fight evil, incorporating all the main elements you would expect to see in a story of this genre. This is a fun adventure story with a strong plot and I look forward to seeing the characters develop more throughout the series.

Rabia Tanveer

Honour's Rest is the first book in The Rite Way series by Judith Crow. The story follows young Pen and his Uncle Napier as the two of them are pushed into situations they would rather not be in. Pendragon “Pen” Devon is a simple 14-year-old boy who is nothing special. That’s what Pen thought until everything changed one day. Somehow Pen was able to push Justin, the school bully, into the pond without even being near him. Turns out, Pen has the Rite. While not strictly a form of magic, it is an ability that allows Pen to do things that are not possible for normal human beings. To help him, Pen’s parents send him off to live with his Uncle Napier to learn to control his abilities. However, living with Uncle Napier is not easy. He is the Rendelf, the person in charge of the Rite in the whole country. Uncle Napier doesn’t have many friends, but he has plenty of enemies. And now Pen is put in a difficult and dangerous position.

Entertaining and incredibly well-written, Honour’s Rest will appeal to a large audience. It is a young adult novel that will be loved by readers of all ages, regardless if they like fantasy or not. As the story opens, you cannot help but feel a little bad for poor Pen. He has no idea what is happening to him, but once he figures it out, he doesn’t let it stop him from enjoying his life and his abilities. Napier is a good influence on him, which is exactly what his mother wanted. The plot develops at a fast pace which keeps readers interested in the story without making them feel rushed. I would love to learn more about Napier and Pen’s abilities. It is a brilliant start to a fantastic series.