To Best the Boys

‘This one really exceeded my expectations. ‘


In a little town called Pinsbury Port, all gentlepersons of age receive a letter inviting them to compete in the so-called Labyrinth. The winner receives a full scholarship to the all-male Stemwick University. The poorer men mostly participate for a better future, the rich ‘Uppers’ participate for honour and maybe even prestige. But Rhen, a girl, isn’t looking for any of those things. No, Rhen is participating to get access to better labs and well-developed medicines, hoping she’ll find what she has been looking for all these months: a medicine for her sick mother and all the other people in Pinsbury Port suffering from the crippling disease. It’s symptoms used to deteriorate a lot slower than they are now. The clock is ticking and Rhen is well aware that the Labyrinth is her only chance now. But is her disguise going to last? Are the other contestants going to play it fair? And most importantly: is she going best the boys?


Sooo… this book! I’m just going to start off by saying I really enjoyed it. I like the fact that it is a standalone fantasy because we don’t see that a lot anymore. And besides that, it was a really unique story. The main character Rhen was a true badass scientific nerd, combined with that little bit stupidity and naivety every teenager possesses. In short, a very loveable character.

Now the thing I that kind of annoyed me in this book was the pace of the story. When you’ve read the synopsis, you’re probably thinking this book is about Rhen’s experience in the Labyrinth, with maybe a few chapters before and after that. But while reading this book it turned out that the story didn’t focus on the Labyrinth that much. There was a huge part before Rhen even entered the Labyrinth and the trial was over in what felt like four chapters. That was somewhat disappointing, but it also surprised me in a way. By giving other subplots a lot of attention too, this book felt really layered and thought-through.

The writing of this story is very formal. It’s probably because Rhen is surrounded by Uppers, very posh people. But I kind of liked it that way. It was easy to follow for someone only knowing English as a subject at school. So, if you’re looking for more books to read in English, this might be the book for you!


I’ll give this book around 4,5 bookies. I have, next to the somewhat misleading synopsis, nothing against this book. I’d say: read this book if you begin to get a little sick of all these trilogies and series. Or maybe you’re just looking for a book with an awesome main character. If so, this book will certainly be something you’ll like. I had these thoughts too… and it really exceeded my expectations!

Product information
Written by: Mary Weber
Pages: 336
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
ISBN: 0718080963
Interested? Buy it here