They say he was an outsider. A man with no home, no family, and no friend to call his own. The man with nothing left to love. The empty man.
They say he talked to animals. They say he traveled between worlds. They say he killed a god, and they may be right. He prowled the border between light and dark. He beat the devil himself with a walking stick. He healed a thousand people in a single day and killed a dragon the same midnight.
They say there was a woman. They say he died for her. No one knows the truth.
Those are the legends about him.
If you want to know the truth I will tell you.
This book was provided for review by the author and the kind folks at The Write Reads. Thank you!
Trigger Warning: blood and gore, death of major characters, description of surgery, mentions of child abuse, mentions of alcohol use, battle sequences
Jack Swift is an incredibly brilliant boy. For the last seven years, he has bounced around from foster home to foster home, never quite fitting in wherever he lands. He does what he can to make the best of every situation often losing himself in his precious books. On the eve of his 14th birthday, he wakes to find a talking rhinoceros in his bedroom.
After that things only get stranger.
The Legend of Black Jack is the first novel by Emmy award winner A.R. Witham. It is a grand, sweeping novel on par with such classics as The Neverending Story or The Chronicles of Narnia. The story draws one in from the beginning, taking the reader by the hand and leading them on a grand adventure they are sure to cherish.
While the overall plot is nothing new it is the way Witham handles it that is. Jack is a fourteen-year-old boy and he acts like it. As smart as he is, he has a temper and gets angry and his hormones sometimes get in the way. He is at times frightened and unsure. He is not perfect. But even with his failures and his setbacks, Jack gets up and keeps going. And while yes, he does save the day neither does he do it alone.
The Legend of Black Jack is a story about relationships. The relationships we are born into and the ones we make along the way in life.
I know some of my readers stay away from Young Adult titles for whatever reasons. I encourage them – as I encourage all of my readers – to pick up The Legend of Black Jack and to please give it a try. Yes, it is technically a Young Adult novel but the story is so much deeper and more mature than it is given credit for. It is a well written and beautiful book and I could easily see it becoming a classic.