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Reviewed by Liz Konkel for Readers' Favorite
Gryphendale by Lara Lee is an exciting adventure into a magical world. A mysterious door leads Autumn into a strange world where she loses her memories. With the appearance of a child, she encounters a queen who puts her into the care of a wise satyr named Puck who is tasked with protecting her. He takes her on the run in an attempt to stay away from Maldamien and to help break the curse placed on her while teaching her the ways of magic. She works to put the pieces of her past together and to understand why she has a photo of the missing Queen Anemone. Along their trip, they encounter Sage and his mentor Toble as they set in motion their plan to stop what Maldamien has brewing.
Not only is Autumn in a magical new world, she's there without her memories, which adds mystery and complication to her journey. Everything is new for her as she has to learn about this new world, about magic, and even about herself so everything is a learning experience for her. Autumn and Puck have a sweet dynamic which is at the heart of Autumn's journey. He's her mentor, teacher, and protector who gives her a safe place and allows her to connect with someone so she's not alone in this world. They navigate several dangers from Maldamien as Puck works to keep her safe, which provides action and suspense as you anxiously hope they can get away. Her past is a key to the mystery as she puts pieces of her memories together to find answers, with plenty of surprises as she discovers who she is and it's exciting to see her solving her own past.
Lara Lee uses humorous moments to take a break from the threat of Maldamien. Though full of action and drama, Gryphendale also has plenty of humor, including a delightful foray into helping plan a wedding and romantic tension when a love triangle develops. Readers dive into Gryphendale for a sweet treat full of heart, humor, and action in a dangerous journey into another world which explores a mysterious past, a deadly threat, and an upcoming battle that will change everything.