Beyond the Kingdom is the fourth book in the Land of Stories series by Chris Colfer. I gave it a five out of five stars, because this book was so epic, and I read most of it in a day, because I couldn’t stop. Their was laughter, tears, and just a lot of both. Sometimes I didn’t know if I should be laughing or crying, because they’d be joking in serious moments. The writing was amazing as usual, the character development was amazing, and the way that he flushes out this story, even more, just makes me so happy.
The series follows the two lives of Alex and Conner, twins, who are recently discover that their grandmother is the fairy Godmother, and that their late father, grew up in the fairy tale land that we only dream about living it. Now, since this already knee deep into the story, I can’t talk about it, without ruining the plot, so if you haven’t read it, read it, and then come back and discuss this beautiful book with me.
In this installment, Alex, becomes the new fairy godmother, because their grandmother passes away but hunting down the Masked Man, whom Alex, believes is her father, suddenly becomes a challenge, because he always seems to be just one step ahead of them. This leads her to become obsessed with the mission, because, this man looks so much like her father, but isn’t. The whole land thinks she’s insane, even her brother. This mission affects more emotionally than any other they have had, it also causes her to loose control of her powers, and the council believes that she is too unsafe to be the Fairy Godmother, if she continues her search for the Masked Man. So, Mother Goose agrees to help her track down the Masked Man.
Meanwhile, Red Riding Hood and Charlie are helping them, but are planning on their wedding, that is the biggest event in all the kingdoms. Charlie, who is so low maintenance, couldn’t care less about wedding arrangements, and then little Red Riding Hood is discussing the importance of it while in the middle of battle with the witches, the Masked Man, Alex and Conner, and Jack and Goldilocks. Little did we know that Charlie’s ex-fiancé threatens the lives of Red, and everyone Charlie holds dear, unless Charlie agrees to be her prisoner and has no choice but to leave Red at the alter.
Then, one night, the late fairy godmother sends Alex a memory, showing her, that her dad a twin brother that they didn’t know about. The twin brother, Lloyd, was very much like Alex, obsessed with books, but he was such an unhappy child. She creates a very simple, but powerful, potion that can allow him to go into the world of any book he chooses, because she believes that this would be bring him great happiness. She was shocked when that didn’t happen. The Fairy Godmother went into the Hall of Dreams, to try to find a way to help her son’s dream come true, until she discovers that her dream, to destroy the land, and kill everyone, including her. So, the fairy Godmother had no choice, but to strip him of his magic, to be sure, that dream never came true.
Once, they learn the secret about their long-lost uncle Lloyd, they start tracking him down, using the same potion that the Fairy Godmother creates. It is discovered that Lloyd is using literary characters to build an army to destroy all of them, once they find the armies he plans on using them, they try to get to the characters, before he does. He plans to use characters from Alice and Wonderland, Peter Pan, King Arthur, and Robin Hood.
Meanwhile, Bree, whom we met, in A Grimm’s Warning is learning that she has magic in her bloodline after all by being related to the Grimm family. She has no choice, but to runaway to get the answers she needed. She runs to her cousins house in CT, to learn that those women had a nickname of being referred as a “coven” because it was always a group of woman that stayed there and there were never any men. Most people thought it was just a funny joke, and didn’t realize how true it was. Bree learns that the portal between both worlds, will occur very soon, and this time, the portal is opening in New York City, where disaster will strike.
However, Alex has fallen in love with Arthur, from the once and future king. These two make a lovely couple getting to know each other, and talk about life, and their destiny, and the roles they must play in the future. They are there for each other, and help each other, accept the responsibility that they must carry through life, and Arthur eventually helps, Alex, return home, after being trapped in the storybook with Mother Goose, from Lloyd.
While Alex was flirting with the future king of England, Conner was trying really hard not too punch Robin Hood in the face. He was stuck in Robin Hood’s story with Peter Pan and the Tin Man, so Conner had a pretty terrible time. Robin Hood was convinced Conner was a sorcerer, but couldn’t stop shouting, and Peter, being a child, couldn’t stop mocking Conner. But, they did help Conner realize that he was just as important to this story as Alex, and used magic, for the first time, just in time to get home for the battle.
The story ends with not only the fairy tale world being in danger, but the otherworld. The same witches that put a curse on Ezmia to become the awful person she was, now plan to use that on Alex. So life as we know it may never be the same in the next installment of the Land of Stories series by Chris Colfer.