The peace of the kingdom has been shattered once again. The evil wizard Malvel has unleashed Arachnid, the King of Spiders. Massive and terrifying, this Beast lurks in the caves of Avantia, spinning his web and waiting for prey.
Can Tom defeat the Beast, get the next pieces of magical golden armor, and save the kingdom from destruction?
I think the fact that the spider monster is named "Arachnid" just about sums up this series' level of creativity.
It's not super creative, is what I'm getting at, and I continue to be bored by it. Luckily, the books are short and not too aggravating... but I assume I'll be setting the series aside soon--unless, of course, it takes a turn for the better!
Arachnid the Spider King is the eleventh book of the Beast Quest series and the fifth in the Golden Armor sextet, and it continues Tom and Elenna's quest to destroy Malvel's six "evil' Beasts and retrieve the Golden Armor of the Master of the Beasts. They come across a village that is slowly being set upon by the fifth Beast, a massive spider... and the villagers don't actually seem to upset about this. They wholly admit that their food is being stolen and that Arachnid will undoubtedly come to eat them when it runs out... and despite insisting that they're terrified, they seem to just collectively pretend it isn't happening and don't do a damn thing to protect themselves.
Because if there's one thing I've learned about Avantia, it's that little preteen Tom is the only individual in the entire kingdom--human or Beast--who actually bothers to get anything done. (Except for when he's facing deadly height, in which case he inevitably falls off whatever he's standing on. Seriously, he's always falling off of shit while Elenna's always getting captured or injured.) I can only assume it's because he has the magical ability of being about to just "know" things about the plot that he has no reason to know, and he is never wrong about these wild assumptions. Of course.
What I'm getting at is that Beast Quest has been repetitive and contrived so far, and it doesn't seem to be improving.
The only thing I can say in favor of Arachnid was that the scene involving the heroes using a crystal to ward off the giant spider reminded me of the Shelob scene in the Lord of the Rings movies... which is fun.
I definitely can't say I recommend these books. They're mediocre in every way, and reading them is definitely giving my eye-rolling muscles a workout. I'm going to get through at least The Dark Realm, the third sextet, before I quit... but I do expect to quit soon.