Rating:

over the underworld book coverReviewed by Caleb Shadis

Over the Underworld is the second book in the Unbelievable FIB series for young readers. I thought it was a very fun book and I might have to find the first installment to see how the adventures started. We have a couple young friends, ABE and Pru, who the previous summer helped Mister Fox save their hometown. Mister Fox is in charge of the Fantasy Investigation Bureau or FIB for short.

It’s been almost a year since they saw Mr. Fox and Pru is not happy about it. She enjoyed her time as an investigator and wants Mr. Fox to come back and need them again. Her father was a police officer and died on duty–investigations make Pru feel closer to him.

Shortly after schools starts, Mr. Fox does show up, and so do several Asgardians. When the duo hear that Odin’s manor is occupied again they make their way up there to see what is going on. They are expecting that things are going to get interesting again and they are right! That is where they meet up with Mr. Fox. Turns out Odin’s son Baldur has been murdered, Loki is blamed, and Odin wants him captured and imprisoned. Mr. Fox wants to have more than just Odin’s ages old prophecy as proof. Because Baldur’s death signals Ragnarok, the end times, is about to begin.

That night the mansion is attacked by trolls and some come looking for Pru and ABE, but Mr. Fox was ready with a plan and got them evacuated to the Chicken house safely–for the most part.

All of this world saving is taking place under the noses of the grown-up world and so ABE and Pru have to hide their activities from parents and teachers. And it also makes 7th grade a little more difficult. On top of that, their 6th grade teacher felt the need to pass on gossip about Pru, making the new teacher a bit prejudiced and causing Pru plenty of troubles.

It’s hard enough to be a secret hero trying to save the world, but it is made so much harder when your teacher seems to have it in for you.

I felt this was a very well written and thought out young adult story, and it used a lot of Norse mythology. It even brought up the question of destiny and fate and whether or not we are bound to it. Good story, recommended.

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Caleb is a software engineer and amateur woodworker living in southern Minnesota. He has more hobbies than he has time or money for, and enjoys his quiet time reading.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Algonquin Young Readers. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.