|Series||The Power of Five (Originally The Gatekeepers)|
|Genre||Horror, Fantasy novel|
|1 August 2005 (UK)
1 June 2005 (US)
|Media type||Print Paperback|
|ISBN||ISBN 1-84428-619-3 (Paperback edition)|
|Followed by||Evil Star|
Raven's Gate is the first book in The Power of Five series, written by Anthony Horowitz. It was published and released in the United Kingdom on 1 August 2005, by Walker Books Ltd and in the United States (1 June 2005) by Scholastic Press under the adjusted series title The Gatekeepers. It is followed by Evil Star, released in 2006, Nightrise in 2007, and Necropolis in 2008, with the final book Oblivion in 2012.
Fourteen-year-old Matt Freeman and his "friend" Kelvin break into a warehouse late at night to steal, but are caught by police. Matt is shocked and confesses, but Kelvin sneaks up behind the policeman and stabs him in the back, leaving him to die. Matt tries to get help but the police come, arrest Matt and Kelvin and take the wounded man to hospital.
In the station, Kelvin blames Matt for the man's wounding and Matt is taken by police. A young black policeman, Stepen Mallory, comes up and interviews him, and finds Matt to be likeable. Then Mallory meets Matt's aunt, Gwenda, who has been summoned by the police to talk about Matt. Matt wakes up in the hospital dying of thirst.
In a sudden trance, Matt stares hard at a glass of water, smells burning, and stares in amazement when the water and the glass explodes even though he is ten feet away. He is amazed for a while but then he goes back to sleep thinking it is just an odd dream.
In the next few weeks, Matt is given a role in the Liberty and Education Achieved through Fostering project, aka the LEAF project. It is for delinquents who are being reassimiliated into society. Mallory is in charge of the project and he introduces Matt to his new guardian, Jayne Deverill, an old, ugly woman who Matt immediately dislikes.
Matt and Jayne Deverill move to Yorkshire, Deverill's home, and she gets him to fit in. But she seems attracted to him in a sinister way when she sees his blood fall on the floor when her cat bites his hand. Matt faints, becomes ill with pneumonia, and sees Jayne Deverill and her sister cure him with dark magic. Matt doesn't know what to believe but he feels different and more confident. Jayne Deverill gets him enslaved on her farm with her evil farmhand Noah, who is threatening and silent as well as mentally damaged. Matt is sent one day to Lesser Malling, the local village, to get something from the chemist, and he meets Jayne Deverill's sister Claire, who is disfigured with a birthmark. Claire and the other villagers come out and they are revealed to be all either disfigured or insane. A seemingly-normal man, Tom Burgess, comes up and tries to be friendly with Matt, but he warns him to leave the village and the area before harm happens to him.
That night, Matt is awoken from a nightmare about a swan where he hears chanting in the woods. He searches the house for money, determined to leave, and then the cat attacks. He cages it in a basket and leaves without money. But he finds to his horror Jayne Deverill had a picture of him when he was five years old at his parent's funeral. His parents died on their way to a wedding, and Matt had bad dreams about their death the night before. He knew they were going to die and told them but his father was a doctor and atheist so he dismissed him. Matt realized he could have burned their car or done anything to make them unable to leave, so he blamed himself for their death in a river. Matt is determined to leave because of the picture and he tries to get out of the village, but the lanes go round in circles and stop him from leaving.
In the woods the following day, Matt meets Tom Burgess again by an old power station, who tells him to go to his house the next day and he will get him out. Tom gives Matt a pendant which is a key which he says unlocks the maze of roads and it does. Matt goes to Tom's the next day to find the farmer dead, murdered by some monster, and the place in a wreck with the words "Raven's Gate" on the bedroom wall. He runs out, and finds a police car. The police recognize him from the LEAF project but don't believe him. They go back to the house and, to Matt's surprise, it is all neat again. One of the villagers is in there and she seems to have rearranged everything, erased all traces of the murder, and Tom Burgess' body has vanished completely.
Jayne Deverill says that Tom Burgess never died and she even gets him to call on the phone even though he is dead. Matt is now sick with anger and he sees Stephen Mallory come back to the house one day. Mallory says he is there to check up on him and he is shocked by how ill Matt looks. He gets into an argument with Jayne Deverill and says he will have her in jail and Matt reassigned to another person. Mallory drives home but he hears whispering in his radio, and the car speeds up and finally goes over a bridge and smashes into a lorry, killing Mallory.
Matt leaves to go to Greater Malling, and he goes online to search about Raven's Gate. But another man named Dravid contacts him in a pop-up box, asking about him. Matt doesn't know what to say so he asks who Dravid is, then Dravid leaves the chat room. Matt meets a journalist named Richard Cole. He tells him the story of what happened but Cole inevitably doesn't believe him. Richard Cole more or less kicks him out and to Matt's shock Jayne Deverill is outside when he leaves. She takes him back to her house.
Matt is awoken by Jayne Deverill who tells him about the detective's death. Then he tries to escape when he sees that Jayne and Claire Deverill are going to the woods. He follows them and sees a dark magic ritual there. He tries to eavesdrop but is noticed and Jayne Deverill summons two black demon dogs which chase him through the woods and then he is finally trapped in a bog. But Richard Cole suddenly appears and rescues him. Richard kills the dogs by incinerating them and he and Matt go to York to Richard's flat. Richard hears Matt's full story and Matt thinks the villagers are witches, to what Richard laughs.
Richard phones Sir Michael Marsh, a government scientist, and Susan Ashwood, a medium, who wrote about Raven's Gate, and Sir Michael Marsh is just boring and tells Matt and Richard about bombs and how the villagers could not have uranium, despite Matt thinking he saw radiation suited men and uranium boxes, and Susan Ashwood is totally mad, but she seems good. Finally, Richard calls Dravid himself who works at the British museum. Dravid agrees to meet and he tells them the reason the villagers are evil.
Long ago, the world was ruled by the Old Ones, who were demons of pure evil. They killed many people and had a war, but were banished by Five children. The children are expected to return when the Old Ones break out, and this is what Jayne Deverill and the villagers are seeking to do.
Dravid is killed by dark magic and the skeletons of dinosaurs in the museum come to life. Jayne Deverill captures Richard and Matt and she takes them to Yorkshire for the sacrifice. Matt kills Noah in a brief fight and he runs out into the night. But Sir Michael Marsh drives up and suddenly betrays Matt by revealing himself as the coven leader. He takes Matt to the power station to kill him. Jayne Deverill and the villagers are there and they try to kill Matt, unleashing a portal to the Old Ones' dimension and a huge dark creature, Chaos, the King of the Old Ones, appears in the gate. Chaos tries to free himself but Matt finally realizes the smell of burning makes his power work because of how his mother burned the toast on the day she died. Matt's power awakens and he stops Sir Michael. Even Chaos retreats. Matt commands Richard to come with him and frees Richard. Jayne Deverill runs after them and she fights Richard over a tank of acid but Richard knocks her in and she burns to death.
The other villagers get scared that the Old Ones will come out and run away but the power station is breaking up and they burn in the flame. Sir Michael stands by the altar and he frees Chaos with Matt's blood. Chaos comes out onto Earth and he grabs Sir Michael and kills him as his reward. But Chaos is sucked in back to Hell when the radiation is sucked in to his realm. Chaos is trapped again.
In the next few weeks, Richard fails to get any work. A society named the Nexus, of whom Dravid belonged, contacts Richard, and tells Matt that another gate is opening in Peru. A man named Fabian, from the Nexus appears and tells Richard and Matt that they need to be in Peru to stop the gate opening. The Old Ones will be free and rule the world if the gate is not closed again.