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Reviewed by Natalie Soine for Readers' Favorite
Howl of the Ice by Christian Raymond is set in Hillson Falls, Michigan. On his way home from school, fourteen-year-old Falc must cross the frozen Blackbird Lake where he is later found hypothermic and frostbitten. Sheriff Chappell explained to Falc’s parents, Alista and Bodhi, that it seemed he was caught in a deluge. Doc Bently said Falc was lucky to still have his fingers and toes. Falc’s Grandpa Rikkar had taken ill and when Falc went to visit him, he came across Slash, an ice sculptor artist, and Aiyanna Baikie, a classmate, and her father, teacher Dakotah Baikie. The group was night-fishing and Falc spent the night with them, soon joined by Deliza and Maple. In the morning the area is hit by a snowstorm where Falc and Aiyana discover that everyone else has vanished. Falc and Aiyanna plunge into an ice portal in search of their families, discovering a mythical entity - Jiekna. They must use all their abilities to save their people, putting their own lives in danger.
Howl of the Ice is a fantastic, thrilling story filled with suspense and intrigue. Christian Raymond is a great author who captivates the reader from beginning to end. The variety of characters in Falc’s life is unusual and interesting yet easy to relate to. I enjoyed the dialogue and relationships between the people and Falc’s family. Christian creates a realistic location on and alongside Blackbird Lake, including the fishing holes, portals, and strange creatures who occupy it. The story is smooth flowing and comfortable to read with a few twists and turns along the way. All-round, a great novella highly recommended to people of all ages.