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Generally speaking, I dislike books that are part of a series. If the book can stand on its own, if it has a definite beginning, middle and end, with just a bit of a teaser to pull you to the next book -- I get that. But if the whole point of the first book, like this one, is only to set the stage for the next book, well, I tend to feel snookered. If it is one story, sell it to me in one $20 book, not three $10 installments. Still, I know plenty of kids who love books in a series, so let's imagine I am one of them. Would I also be annoyed by the rampant usage of stereotypes, particularly of the Japanese characters? Might I be just as skeptical of the very "Lost"-like feeling of the story itself (a plane crashes in a weird place that seems mostly familiar but also magical)? The first fifty pages intrigued me, but the rest was just a great lead-up to disappointment.