The good beasts of Avantia are in danger. They have been captured by six terrible new Beasts and taken to Gorgonia, kingdom of the evil wizard Malvel. To free the Beasts, Tom and Elenna must journey into the sinister Dark Realm.
There, Tom meets one of the deadliest creatures he has ever faced. Huge, with terrifying horns and a shining golden ax, Torgor the Minotaur will stop at nothing to serve his master. But Tom is determined to defeat the Beast, bringing him one step closer to victory over Malvel.
Torgor the Minotaur is the thirteenth Beast Quest book and the first in its third sub-series, The Dark Realm, which takes heroes Tom and Elenna to Gorgonia, Malvel's kingdom. It also hits the reset button to a certain (odd) extent, as Tom cannot keep the magical armor he earned in the previous series, The Golden Armor... and yet his wizard friend, Aduro, says he gets to keep the power-ups it gives him??? Sure, why not. And, contrary to what I said in my first review, this is now definitely a series about slaughtering "evil" mythical creatures; this time, the excuse is that Tom
and Elenna must kill these Gorgonian Beasts to save the Avantian Beasts.
It's typical Beast Quest fare, without much else to speak off. Again, the universe conspires to make sure Tom doesn't even remotely have to work for his victory, to the point that Malvel, the supposed antagonist, gives him a magical map to lead him directly to his objective. Because... I don't know. I don't think the ghostwriter knows either, really, other than that it's a convenient way to explain how Tom so easily and quickly tracks down the Beasts.
Like usual, Tom gets a power-up in each of these books. In the original Beast Quest books, he got a token from each guardian Beast of Avantia; in the sequel, Golden Armor, he snagged a piece of armor in each installment; now, in Dark Realm, he gets a magic gemstone after defeating each Beast. (Feel free to insert your own "this ripped off Deltora Quest" joke here.) In Torgor, the titular Beast leaves behind a ruby that lets Tom speak to Beasts. Why does Torgor have such a gem? Who the fuck knows; presumably, Malvel gave it to him, because that's exactly the kind of stupid thing Malvel--who's consistently proven himself to be so idiotically helpful to Tom that if these writers have any self-awareness, they'll reveal him to be a tempter-mentor a la Teen Titans' Slade to Robin--would do.
Anyway, I'm reading the next five books and then giving up on the series for good. I definitely don't recommend reading these.