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Category Archives: Adventure

Root Bound (Emma & the Elementals #1) by Tanya Karen Gough

Root Bound by Tanya Karen GoughNote: I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Root Bound is the first of a planned quartet called Emma and the Elements. This middle grade fantasy series follows Emma as she comes of age and discovers how her unique magic can restore order to the mysterious land of Under. Read the rest of this entry »

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Bone: Full Color One Volume Edition by Jeff Smith

I lost myself in the Bone 20th Anniversary color edition over Christmas. I’d discovered the series a few years back, after the original one volume black and white edition was published.

The last time I encountered Fone Bone and his friends was in 2006, when the original One Volume edition debuted. Previously, each of the series’ issues had been collected into (now somewhat hard-to-find) graphic novels. The One Volume, like many current editions of The Lord of the Rings, emphasized that Bone was one long story, with a beginning, a middle, and an end as the author intended. Even though Jeff Smith was publishing Bone for a good portion of my childhood, I hadn’t discovered it until I was well into adulthood. Still, I feel lucky that I was able to read the entire epic in one handy volume, without having to wait until the next issue to see what happened.

The story tells the epic adventure of three cousins who stumble upon a plot to unleash an ancient evil that will trap the world in a nightmare. There are many reviews of the series on the Internet, so this review will focus on the color one volume itself. Read the rest of this entry »

 

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The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly

I’ve been sitting on my review of The Book of Lost Things for a while now, mulling over it, searching for something else like it, and generally stewing. There are many modern novels that reinvent fairy tales for their own purpose, but The Book of Lost Things does it particularly well.

In 1939, when England is at war with Germany, a young boy named David loses his mother. He clings to her memory like a worn blanket, and clutches at the stories they shared together, stories that “come alive in the telling.” Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on October 11, 2010 in Adventure, Author: John Connolly, Fantasy, Literature

 

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The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey — Trenton Lee Stewart

Reynie, Kate, Sticky, and Constance return in this sequel to The Mysterious Benedict Society. Set one year after the first book’s events, the quartet become embroiled in international intrigue that only they can unravel. Mr. Benedict had planned a globe-trotting scavenger hunt for the kids, but was kidnapped by Mr. Curtain before he could surprise the children, who are the only ones who can decipher his clues and determine his whereabouts. With only their extraordinary wits and sheer determination to guide them, the children leap from one precarious situation to the next before rescuing their mentor.

This was a well-written sequel to the excellent original novel. As all children and good characters are wont to do, these children evolve, but without losing the quirkiness that makes them so memorable. Sticky struggles with his new-found pride and strives to be as brave as his friends. Constance, while as contrary as ever, seems to have softened with age. Reynie, from whose point of view the story is mainly told, struggles with his perceptions of others–people are much more complex than they would seem. Kate, from what I noticed, remained essentially the same–brave, resourceful, and full of exuberant energy.

 

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The Mysterious Benedict Society — Trenton Lee Stewart

The Mysterious Benedict Society is one of those breezy, yet exciting reads that keeps me reading children’s fiction, even though I’m no longer the target audience. Meaty enough for adults at 471 pages (trade paperback) but written in a linear, simple style for younger readers, Benedict combines precocious orphans with perilous adventures to great effect.

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