Life can't get much better for Sam Lock. Popular, good-looking, and with a future as a professional football player. every guy at Stanton High School wishes he were Sam. That is, until his championship football game, when Sam accidentally links with an ancient source of energy known as the Veil and reveals his potential to become a powerful sorcerer.Sam is whisked off to Atlas Crown, a community of sorcerers who utilize the Veil as a part of everyday life. Once there, he trains beside a mute boy who speaks through music, an eternal sage who's the eyes and ears of the Veil, and a beautiful girl who's pretty sure Sam's an idiot.As it becomes clear Sam's meant for power magic-the most feared and misunderstood form of sorcery-people beyond Atlas Crown learn of his dangerous potential. An exiled group of power sorcerers are eager to recruit Sam, believing that he is destined to help them achieve their long-held goal. If they succeed, they could bring about the downfall of not only Atlas Crown. but all humankind. Goodreads
I haven't read many YA novels with a male protagonist, but I think I should start. I loved Sam. He's the type of believable character I could easily see being from my old high-school. (If my high school had football superstars) His reactions, emotions, and dialog were all very realistic. And his best, maybe only, friend Glissandro? He can only speak through his music. How cool is that?
Atlas Crown itself was hard for me to really picture. It is so different from our world, with it's own culture, customs, food, and living spaces. But once I got my head around it, it was awesome.
I was glad that Daniel didn't try to turn this facinating story into just another love drama. Actually, there isn't much of a romance factor at all. There are two girls that feature as possible love intrests, but it really isn't part of the main story. Actually, I loved how Sam, in typical teenage boy fasion, has no idea what either of them truly wants, or the best way to impress them.
Perhaps my favorite part of the book is how easy it was for Sam to make the wrong choices. Without giving too much away, there were times where I wasn't eve 100% sure who the bad guys were. I've read several novels where the villian is so obvious that the main character's struggle to do the right thing seems fake. Not so with Masters of the Veil.
The only reason Daniel doesn't earn all 5 stars in my opinion is that the early descriptions of Atlas Crown reminded me of a combination of Alice in Wonderland and Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, both of which creeped me out. But that is totally an opinion issue, so you should check it out yourself! If you're looking for a vivid new world of magic, mystery, danger, and excitement, you won't go wrong with Masters of the Veil.
YA notes: Mild language