Middleworld by J&P Voelkel

Summary/Cover Image from Publisher's Website:
Fourteen-year-old Max Murphy is looking forward to a family vacation. But his parents, both archaeologists and Maya experts, announce a change in plan. They must leave immediately for a dig in the tiny Central American country of San Xavier. Max will go to summer camp. Max is furious. When he's mysteriously summoned to San Xavier, he thinks they've had a change of heart.

Upon his arrival, Max's wild adventure in the tropical rainforests of San Xavier begins. During his journey, he will unlock ancient secrets and meet strangers who are connected to him in ways he could never have imagined. For fate has delivered a challenge of epic proportions to this pampered teenager. Can Max rescue his parents from the Maya Underworld and save the world from the Lords of Death, who now control the power of the Jaguar Stones in their villainous hands? The scene is set for a roller-coaster ride of suspense and terror, as the good guys and the bad guys face off against a background of haunted temples, zombie armies, and even human sacrifice!

Every once in a while I come upon a book I just can not get into nor finish for the life of me, and The Jaguar Stones: Middleworld was unfortunately one of those types of books

One of the main reasons for not enjoying this book was Max, the main character. I felt that he was just too whiny and bratty for my tastes, leaving me to have a hard time putting up and sympathizing with him and his situation, and don't even get me started about connecting to him or his situation. It was just hopeless, sadly enough. Plus, the other characters introduced in this (I read up to 224, more than half way) were ones that I would've had the possibility of liking if they actually were developed a bit more. I do admit though that I did like Lola. She was spunky and original and I have a feeling if this was told in her POV instead I would've loved the book.

While the premise of this is quite awesome, I had an extremely hard time trying to get into the book. Maybe it was just the mood I was in or maybe it was just not the thing for me, but I couldn't make it through the whole book. Though, I do give J&P huge props for the level of research they must have put into this to make the Mayan aspects be three dimensional and realistic.

In all, Middleworld wasn't the book for me mostly because I couldn't connect to the main character, which is a bad thing for me no matter how amazing the rest of the book is. I do feel that tween/teen boys will eat this right up and even girls if they love adventure books. Perhaps if I get the time latter on to finish it latter on, I'll see a different light about it but for now the situation is hopeless.

Grade: N/A (didn't finish)

Middleworld is now out!

Source: Publicist at Goodman Media. Thanks Jenny!


  1. It's a shame you didn't finish it, but I know what you mean about not connecting with the main character. It's pretty important.

    Thanks for the honest review!

  2. I didn't like Max either, because he was a spoiled brat, but he does change and develop into a much more likable character by the end of the book.

  3. This sounds like a book I wouldn't be able to get into very easily either. However, I have several boys at my library who I just know would like it so it's always good to know there's an audience out there somewhere!

  4. Yeah, sometimes you just can't finish. :/

  5. I felt the same way about Max in the beginning but he changes by the end of the book. Also after reading this I felt like I knew so much more about Mayan history.


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