I approached the third Fablehaven novel as a fully invested (less skeptical) reader, and as a result I enjoyed this installment. The third book begins right where the second book ended, I am not sure that I enjoy that irregular timing, but is serves to move the story along swiftly and there is nothing technically wrong with choosing to start a book then, it was just unexpected. Seth is up to his usual antics sneaking to forbidden areas of the magical preserve and hanging out with unsavory characters. In his travels, he discovers that some of the creatures are changing and not for the better.
Meanwhile, Kendra is invited to join the Knights of the Dawn, and they are getting together for a meeting. Despite rumors that the Sphynx is actually in collusion with the Society of the Evening Star, and ALSO the secret leader of the Knights of the Dawn (talk about entangling alliances!), Kendra is allowed to go under Warren’s supervision. When they arrive Kendra is given a mission to retrieve one of the five magical objects that can open the unpronounceable demon prison. Kendra is also introduced to a potential future love interest, Gavin Rose (gag, I really hope this story line doesn’t go very far). At the preserve Kendra realizes that her adventurous ancestor Patton Burgess has already retrieved the object and hidden it right back in good ole Fablehaven, talk about a wasted trip.
The whole gang reconvenes to address the current threat to Fablehaven, and Vanessa further enlightens them as to the way the Sphynx works. This novel is packed. We meet the time traveling Patton, some arrogant centaurs, and unravel some of the preserves’ mysteries. One of the more interesting aspects of the novel are a focus on Seth’s new abilities that might rival Kendra. Oh, please let one of them go Darth Vader on us and have an epic fight to the death! Sorry, that was my wishful thinking. All in all I found this book really enjoyable and could see how older middle grade readers or younger young adult readers could love this.