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Simon and Schuster
"The Legend Thief," the second book in the Hunter Chronicles series by Utahn E.J. Patten. "The Legend Thief" launch party is Tuesday, March 6, at the King's English.

"THE LEGEND THIEF," by E.J. Patten, Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers, $16.99, 384 pages (f) (ages 12 and up)

After fighting a monster, overhearing a deadly plot against his family and friends, and being forgotten on his special day, Sky Weathers decides this is the worst birthday ever in "The Legend Thief," the newest book in The Hunter Chronicles series.

Preparing to face their enemies — hundreds of them — who are targeting Sky, he and his friends recycle garbage into weapons, but then the bickering starts.

The fighting among the friends leaves them splintered and Sky might be on his own to face his enemies, risking his family, friends and the entire city of Exile. However, the upcoming battle isn't as straightforward as it appears and ulterior motives and secrets are in play.

Utah author E.J. Patten grabs readers' attention from the start in "The Legend Thief," the second book in The Hunter Chronicles series targeted at middle grade readers.

Patten provides enough background in "The Legend Thief" to put together the people, places and events from that reading the first book "Return to Exile" isn't absolutely required. Patten also includes a description of monsters and hunters of legend in the back of the book.

"The Legend Thief" has a lot of suspense and mystery that young children and even teenagers are sure to enjoy. But some of the violence, though not overly descriptive, may be too much for younger readers. There are also brief references to kisses between a boyfriend and girlfriend including references to using kissing as a distraction.

Familial bonds and love are important in the book and Patten shows diversity in families and other characters. He also shows reading and study as ways to figure out problems.

By the book's end the mysteries that are solved create new mysteries and a hunger for a third book.

If you go ...

What: "The Legend Thief" book launch and E.J. Patten book signing

When: Tuesday, March 5, 7 p.m.

Where: The King's English, 1511 S. 1500 East, Salt Lake City

Web: kingsenglish.com, www.ejpatten.com

Angel McRae is a full-time Utah State University student and mother of five.