Cameron Battle and the Hidden Kingdoms (Hardcover)
March/April 2022 Kids Indie Next List
“I truly enjoyed Cameron Battle and the Hidden Kingdoms. The adventure and mystery of Cameron's family and the Chidani people is sure to capture readers. Books steeped in Black history and mythology are much needed on our shelves.”
— Rayna Nielsen, Blue Cypress Books, New Orleans, LA
Inspired by West African and Igbo history and mythology, this adventurous middle-grade fantasy debut perfect for fans of Aru Shah and Tristan Strong celebrates the triumphs and challenges of a boy finding his truth path to greatness.
As the true Descendant, I command to open
The door to Chidani; it shall be broken
Magic awaits those who seek the queen’s peace
And all the suffering you feel will cease
Those who open the histories will hear a sound
What was lost has finally been found.
Cameron Battle grew up reading The Book of Chidani, cherishing stories about the fabled kingdom that cut itself off from the world to save the Igbo people from danger. Passed down over generations, the Book is Cameron’s only connection to his parents who disappeared one fateful night, two years ago.
Ever since, his grandmother has kept the Book locked away, but it calls to Cameron. When he and his best friends, Zion and Aliyah, decide to open it again, they are magically transported to Chidani. Instead of a land of beauty and wonder, they find a kingdom in extreme danger, as the queen’s sister seeks to destroy the barrier between worlds. The people of Chidani have been waiting for the last Descendant to return and save them . . . is Cameron ready to be the hero they need?
Dr. Jamar J. Perry is a debut author who received his PhD in literacy education, language, culture, and social inquiry from the University of Maryland, College Park. Before, he taught middle school language arts for four years, where the majority of the students were Black boys. Like Cameron, he hopes that one day all Black boys can understand how magical and joyful they really are, no matter how different they may feel.
"A thrilling, imaginative adventure that kids are sure to love! As immersive as it is fun, you’ll feel you’re tagging along with Cameron, Zion, and Aliyah the whole way through." - Claribel A. Ortega, New York Times bestselling author of THE GHOST SQUAD and the Witchlings series
"Breathlessly magical from start to finish." - Scott Reintgen, indie bestselling author of the Nyxia series
"Perry has a gift for creating dialogue and writing fast-paced, suspenseful scenes that will both enchant readers and leave them wincing in empathy. Cliff-hanger endings abound that will have students begging for more." - School Library Journal, starred review
“Rooted in Igbo mythology and starring Black protagonists of various ethnic backgrounds, Perry’s tale offers up a fast-paced, intense story of legacy and loss as Cameron worries about whether he’s fit for the task at hand, even as he draws on the support of his companions and memories of his family legacy.” - Publishers Weekly
“Perry has written an action-packed fantasy with Igbo and other African mythology. . . . This title is a must-read for fans of Kwame Mbalia's Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky.” —Booklist
“Perry presents a fantasy adventure full of adventure, loss, bravery, and perseverance.” —Kirkus Reviews