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Teknon and the Champion Warriors: An Interactive Adventure to Explore Courageous Manhood Review by Wendy Walker

By Brent Sapp
Generations of Virtue
PO Box 62253
Colorado Springs, CO 80962

If you long to see your son develop "the soul of a warrior and the heart of a champion," consider preparing him for spiritual battle with Teknon and the Champion Warriors, an interactive, three-part series (novel, mission guide, and mentor guide). Through an action-packed, science fiction adventure written for boys from 11 to 16 years old, the author explores mature subject matter pertaining to young manhood. The adventure chronicles the tests that Teknon, the teen hero, faces as he sets out with his father and four mentors on a dangerous mission to battle the evil Magos and restore order to the planet Basileia. As the team fights fierce robots, and reptilian opponents, Teknon discovers that his personal battles are often the most difficult to overcome. Struggles with pride, lust, and even fear threaten to undo the youth, but under the faithful tutelage of the older men, Teknon learns that it is adherence to the Champion Code--a code which emphasizes characteristics such as courage, honor, purity, and integrity--that is essential to winning the fight against the enemy.

The Mentor Guide and Mission Guide are designed to be used in conjunction with the story. According to the author, "Champion Training is an interactive adventure designed to encourage a young man to embrace the process of developing godly character and convictions in his life, under the guidance of his father or a mentor." Sixteen sessions provide biblical studies corresponding to topics from the story. Movie, audio, and book lists are included for further learning; hands-on activities and assignments give sons opportunities to live out each session's principles; and conversation-starters promote quality one-on-one discussions between fathers and sons. Boys are taught to work faithfully and persevere through each lesson so as to complete the entire study guide, and they are challenged to purposefully train to become biblical men. At the culmination of the 16-session study, fathers are given specific ways to execute a meaningful Celebration Ceremony, during which time a warrior son is proclaimed, before other godly men, a young-man "moving toward mature manhood."

As a mom, I have to admit that my first impression of the books (based solely on the comic-book-style illustrations by Sergio Cariello) was not favorable. Honestly, I didn't want to read them. But my sons were thrilled when they saw the series arrive. "Cool," was the word. And my husband's thoughts? "Ooh, that looks interesting." So, laying aside my personal preferences, I began to read, just to see. Even through the first few chapters I wasn't sold. Teknon treats his sister indifferently, if not rudely (this changes as Teknon matures and understands his role as older brother). And God isn't referred to as God; He's Pneuma (Greek for "Spirit"). Of course, C.S. Lewis had Aslan, so who am I to complain; after all, the setting in Teknon is Basileia, not Earth. The more I read (especially as I studied along in the Mentor Guide), the more I came to believe that this was a series that would positively engage and mold young male minds. My husband further proofed the books and agreed.

We're not comfortable starting the program with our 11- and 13-year-olds. The author presents a few topics (such as pornography and sexual temptation) in an appropriate, yet nonetheless direct, way. And we are not yet ready to expose our younger sons to that sort of thing. Even with our oldest we won't use several of the movie suggestions from the Mentor Guide as they don't meet our family's criteria. However, the books have already provided opportunities for meaningful dialogue, and the projects are inspiring our son to exercise leadership and examine his character in light of Scripture. As father and son continue their adventure through the study, I look forward to seeing God's work in the heart of our maturing Champion Warrior.

Product review by Wendy Walker, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, June 2007