Parents' Guide to

Shadows of the Dark Crystal: Jim Henson's Dark Crystal, Book 1

By Michael Berry, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Fantasy prequel doesn't match the original movie.

Book J. M. Lee Fantasy 2016
Shadows of the Dark Crystal: Jim Henson's Dark Crystal, Book 1 Poster Image

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It's been more than 30 years since the release of Jim Henson's original fantasy film, but this prose prequel demonstrates that there's plenty of energy left in the concept. Now Shadows of the Dark Crystal shows what transpired long before the tale told in the movie. The initial volume of a four-part series, this book starts slowly but gradually picks up steam as Naia and her compatriots draw closer to their destination. The conclusion feels abrupt, however, its revelations obscured in a somewhat confusing action scene.

Author J.M. Lee does a good job of sketching in some details not addressed in the original movie, but the plot sometimes seems to be marking time so the story can be told over four volumes. Dark Crystal fans will probably enjoy this prequel, but newcomers may not be enraptured.

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