Arlo Fitch in the Valley of Fire (Non-Spolier review)!!

Arlo Finch in the Valley Of Fire  by John August

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Published by  Roaring Brook Press on February 6, 2018

Genres:  Middle Grade, Adventure

Pages: 326

Format: Hardback

Source: Personally bought

2018 challenge: N/A

Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 3.75 for a review.

Summary!!!

Arlo Finch in the Valley of Fire is the first book in a spellbinding fantasy adventure series by screenwriter John August.

Some trails lead to magic. Some lead to danger.

As Arlo looked around, the walls of his room began to vanish, revealing a moonlit forest. Only his bed remained, and the frame of his window, through which he saw the girl. The world on her side of the glass was sparkling with silver and gold, like a palace made of autumn leaves.
She looked off to her right. Someone was coming. Her words came in an urgent whisper: “If I can see you, they can see you . . . Be careful, Arlo Finch.

Arlo Finch thought becoming a Ranger meant learning wilderness skills, like camping and knots. But upon arriving in the tiny town of Pine Mountain, Colorado, Arlo soon learns there’s so much more. His new friends Indra and Wu teach him how to harness the wild magic seeping in from the mysterious Long Woods—a parallel realm of wonder and danger.

First he must master the basics, including snaplights, thunderclaps and identifying supernatural creatures. But Arlo Finch is no ordinary Ranger, and this is no ordinary time. A dark and ancient force is sending threats into the real world . . . our world.

Through perilous adventures and close calls, Arlo is awakened to his unique destiny—but the obstacles he faces will test the foundations of the Ranger’s Vow: loyalty, bravery, kindness, and truth.

My Thoughts:

I found this book to be the prefect mix between adventure, magic and nature adventure. I feel in love with the worlds that was created. I really loved the main character and also the the trio characters that was created. I thought the concepts of the scouts was so fun to read but also a nice balance between fantasy and realistic elements. I thought the Arlo WAS such a fun lead and this book just made me smile. I thought it was super fast pace novel!! I really can’t wait for book 2.

 

 

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Dragon Watch: Non-Spolier Review!!

Dragon Watch by Brandon Mull

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Published by Shadow Mountain March 14, 2017

Genres: Middle Grade, Fantasy

Pages: 384

Format: Hardback

Source: Personally bought

2018 challenge: Beat the backlist challenge

Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 3.5  for a review.

Summary!!!

In the long-awaited sequel to Fablehaven, the dragons who have been kept at the dragon sanctuaries no longer consider them safe havens, but prisons and they want their freedom. The dragons are no longer our allies….

In the hidden dragon sanctuary of Wyrmroost, Celebrant the Just, King of the Dragons, plots his revenge. He has long seen the sanctuaries as prisons, and he wants nothing more than to overthrow his captors and return the world to the Age of Dragons, when he and his kind ruled and reigned without borders. The time has come to break free and reclaim his power.

No one person is capable of stopping Celebrant and his dragon horde. It will take the ancient order of Dragonwatch to gather again if there is any chance of saving the world from destruction. In ancient times, Dragonwatch was a group of wizards, enchantresses, dragon slayers, and others who originally confined the majority of dragons into sanctuaries. But nearly all of the original Dragonwatch members are gone, and so the wizard Agad reaches out to Grandpa Sorenson for help.

As Kendra and Seth confront this new danger, they must draw upon all their skills, talents, and knowledge as only they have the ability to function together as a powerful dragon tamer. Together they must battle against forces with superior supernatural powers and breathtaking magical abilities.

How will the epic dragon showdown end? Will dragons overthrow humans and change the world as we know it?

My Thoughts:

I really loving going back to this world! I just loved this seeing how these main characters have changed so much. I also loved the new setting but also the same sense of adventure. The book was such a fun read and just put a smile on my face. I read this book so fast and really need to read book 2. I also really loved how brandon created this new world and also expanded the old world. I really am loving the dynamics between seth and kendra and how they have changed so much. I def. enjoyed this book a lot and just wish I would have re-read the original series because I feel like I missed so many tiebacks to the first series but really found it to be a fun adventure story!

Small Spaces by Katherine Arden Non-Spoiler Review!!!

Small Spaces  by Katherine Arden

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Published by  G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers  September 25, 2018

Genres: Middle Grade, Mystery, Scary, October Read

Pages: 244

Format: Arc

Source: BEA

2018 challenge: N/A

Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads

I would give this book 3.5 for a review.

Summary!

After suffering a tragic loss, eleven-year-old Ollie only finds solace in books. So when she happens upon a crazed woman at the river threatening to throw a book into the water, Ollie doesn’t think–she just acts, stealing the book and running away. As she begins to read the slender volume, Ollie discovers a chilling story about a girl named Beth, the two brothers who both loved her, and a peculiar deal made with “the smiling man,” a sinister specter who grants your most tightly held wish, but only for the ultimate price.

Ollie is captivated by the tale until her school trip the next day to Smoke Hollow, a local farm with a haunting history all its own. There she stumbles upon the graves of the very people she’s been reading about. Could it be the story about the smiling man is true? Ollie doesn’t have too long to think about the answer to that. On the way home, the school bus breaks down, sending their teacher back to the farm for help. But the strange bus driver has some advice for the kids left behind in his care: “Best get moving. At nightfall they’ll come for the rest of you.” Nightfall is, indeed, fast descending when Ollie’s previously broken digital wristwatch, a keepsake reminder of better times, begins a startling countdown and delivers a terrifying message: RUN.

Only Ollie and two of her classmates heed the bus driver’s warning. As the trio head out into the woods–bordered by a field of scarecrows that seem to be watching them–the bus driver has just one final piece of advice for Ollie and her friends: “Avoid large places. Keep to small.”

And with that, a deliciously creepy and hair-raising adventure begins.

My Brief Thoughts:

I really loved this middle grade adventure story. I liked how this standalone was so well crafted and such a fast pace read. It had the right balance between adventure, scares and friendship. I normally love books with a trio of characters and this book was no different. This book was def scary at points but very good for middle grade kids. I think this would make a great fall or October read. It also harder issues like grief, death and bullying in a very easy to understand way.

My Extended Thoughts:

Characters: These characters were just super fun to read from. This book was very short but the characters def made impressions on me. I also loved how much detail the side characters got and it def made the world building seem larger because of all the characters we got to know.

Scary??? This book def. has creepy and mysteries undertones. I would rec. this book for higher middle grade or as a read a loud for younger kids. I get scared easy and this book did not terrify me 🙂

Plot: I really enjoyed how this book was created and the present storyline and the past told through the dairy. I thought this made the book rather fast pace and it was rather hard to put down,

More books! I really want to check out her adult stuff!

 

 

Explorer Academy: The Nebula Secret (Non-Spoiler Review)

Explorer Academy: The Nebula Secret by Trudi Trueit

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Published by Under the Stars on September 4, 2018

Genres: Middle Grade, Adventure

Pages: 208

Format: Arc

Source: BEA

2018 challenge: N/A

Buy on AmazonBarnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 4 for a review.

Summary!!!

Adventure, danger, and a thrilling global mission await 12-year-old Cruz Coronado as he joins an elite school for explorers.

Cruz leaves his tranquil home in Hawaii to join 23 talented kids from around the globe to train at the Explorer Academy with the world’s leading scientists to become the next generation of great explorers. But for Cruz, there’s more at stake. No sooner has he arrived at the Academy than he discovers that his family has a mysterious past with the organization that could jeopardize his future. In the midst of codebreaking and cool classes, new friends and augmented reality expeditions, Cruz must tackle the biggest question of all: Who is out to get him, and why?

My Brief Thoughts:

I found this to super fun read. I thought it was much more realistic and science heavy version of 39 clues. This book def had a strong mix of adventure and mystery but also knowledge and history and science. I really loved the structure of this book and all the characters were just so much fun to read about. I really enjoyed the trio of characters that developed and am super excited to see how the ending and will effect the structure of the future books. I also loved how this book had so many pictures to accent the story. Readers who enjoyed 39 clues may like this if they looking for more of realistic story, should check it out! I am def going to read book 2

Mac Undercover Kids Spy # 1: Arc Review!

  Mac Undercover Kids Spy # 1 by Mac Barnett

Published by  Scholastic Inc. on September 11, 2018

Genres: Middle Grade, Adventure,

Pages: 160

Format: Arc

Source: Book Expo

2018 challenge: N/A

Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble,  Goodreads

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I would give this book 3.5 for a review.

Summary!!

Before Mac Barnett was an author, he was a kid.
And while he was a kid, he was a spy.
Not just any spy.
But a spy…for the Queen of England.

James Bond meets Diary of a Wimpy Kid with this groundbreaking new fully-illustrated chapter book series Mac B., Kid Spy. The precious Crown Jewels have been stolen, and there’s only one person who can help the Queen of England: her newest secret agent, Mac B. Mac travels around the globe in search of the stolen treasure…but will he find it in time?

From secret identities to Karate hijinks, this fast-paced, witty and historically inspired chapter book will keep readers guessing until the very last page. With full-color illustrations and fascinating historical facts masterfully sprinkled throughout, this series offers adventure, intrigue, absurdity, history and humor. Discover this totally smart and side-splittingly funny new series, and experience what it’s really like to be a kid spy.

My  Thoughts:

This book was such a fun read. I really loved the story and also the illustrations. It was such a fun adventure story that I think kids would really enjoy as either reading them on their own or as read aloud. I thought the illustrations were so fun and I was super engaged in the story and read it so fast. I would be a great summer or early fall read. I also the caper in this story and really thought it was charming read! I def. hope we get more adventures in the future!

Let me know in the comments if you will be picking this up for the young reader in your life!

 

 

Land of Stories: Worlds Collide (Non-Spoiler Review)!!!

The Land of Stories: Worlds Collide by Chris Colfer

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Published by  Little, Brown Books for Young Readers July 11, 2017

Genres: Middle Grade, Fairytale, Adventure

Pages: 465

Format: Audiobook

Source: Personally own

2018 challenge: Beat the backlist challenge

Buy on AmazonBarnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 5 for a review.

Summary!!!

In the highly anticipated conclusion to the Land of Stories series, Conner and Alex must brave the impossible. All of the Land of Stories fairy tale characters–heroes and villains–are no longer confined within their world!
With mayhem brewing in the Big Apple, Conner and Alex will have to win their biggest battle yet. Can the twins restore order between the human and fairy tale world?
Breathtaking action mixed with laugh out loud moments and lots of heart will make this a gripping conclusion for many fans!

 

My Thoughts:

I really thought this was such a solid conclusion to the series. I also really enjoyed how this book also played with various timelines in this story. I just was super impressed with how the plot was created. I also found it intreating that this book was def a ‘connor” focused book even thought Alex was always at the heart of this book. This book made me cry and also laugh. I just loved how chris crafted these characters and also this world. I just loved going back to this world!

City of Ghosts: Non-Spoiler Review!!!

City Of Ghosts  by Victoria Schwab

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Published by  Scholastic Press on August 28, 2018

Genres: Middle Grade, Adventure, Ghost story

Pages: 304

Format: arc

Source: BEA

2018 challenge: N/A

Buy on AmazonBarnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 4  for a review.

Summary!!!

Ever since Cass almost drowned (okay, she did drown, but she doesn’t like to think about it), she can pull back the Veil that separates the living from the dead . . . and enter the world of spirits. Her best friend is even a ghost.

So things are already pretty strange. But they’re about to get much stranger.

When Cass’s parents start hosting a TV show about the world’s most haunted places, the family heads off to Edinburgh, Scotland. Here, graveyards, castles, and secret passageways teem with restless phantoms. And when Cass meets a girl who shares her “gift,” she realizes how much she still has to learn about the Veil — and herself.

And she’ll have to learn fast. The city of ghosts is more dangerous than she ever imagined.

My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed this middle grade ghost story so much. I really though the chracters and the world building was standout in this novel. I really had a hard time putting this book down. I also loved how this story not only build a complex world but also could expand readers knowledge in easy to understand way. I also loved even thought his book was very magical. mystical in nature some themes like friendship and parents were pretty universal. I really found this book to be charming read and found it to the right mix of adventure but also creepy and think it would make a prefect fall read!

The Darkest Prophecy! Non-Spoiler Review

The Dark Prophecy by Brigid Camera

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Published by   Disney Hyperion on May 2, 2017

Genres: Middle Grade , Fantasy

Pages: 432

Format: Hardback, Audiobook

Source: Personally bought

2018 challenge: Beat the backlist challenge

Buy on AmazonBarnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 5 for a review.

Summary!!!

Zeus has punished his son Apollo–god of the sun, music, archery, poetry, and more–by casting him down to earth in the form of a gawky, acne-covered sixteen-year-old mortal named Lester. The only way Apollo can reclaim his rightful place on Mount Olympus is by restoring several Oracles that have gone dark. What is affecting the Oracles, and how can Apollo/Lester do anything about them without his powers? After experiencing a series of dangerous–and frankly, humiliating–trials at Camp Half-Blood, Lester must now leave the relative safety of the demigod training ground and embark on a hair-raising journey across North America. Fortunately, what he lacks in godly graces he’s gaining in new friendships–with heroes who will be very familiar to fans of the Percy Jackson and the Olympians and Heroes of Olympus series. Come along for what promises to be a harrowing, hilarious, and haiku-filled ride. . .

My Thoughts:

i enjoyed the second story in this series. I love the focus on leo cause he is my favorite character. it was a fun story but also super heartfelt. I really did miss camp half blood at points but i really did love the story and can’t wait for the next one. I also really enjoyed how rick used the new myths into this story. I also really loved Apllo growth in this book and really how each peers are chaining his view on this world! I really can’t wait to see what characters appear as cameo next!

Magnus Chase and The Ship of the Dead: Non-Spoiler Review!!

Magnus Chase and the The Ship of the Dead by Rick Riordan

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Published by  Disney Hyperion on October 3, 2017

Genres: Young Adult, contemporary

Pages: 432

Format: hardback

Source: Personally Bought

2018 challenge: Beat the Backlist Challenge

Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 5 for a review.

Summary!!

This book Magnus Chase, a once-homeless teen, is a resident of the Hotel Valhalla and one of Odin’s chosen warriors. As the son of Frey, the god of summer, fertility, and health, Magnus isn’t naturally inclined to fighting. But he has strong and steadfast friends, including Hearthstone the elf, Blitzen the dwarf, and Samirah the Valkyrie, and together they have achieved brave deeds, such as defeating Fenris Wolf and battling giants for Thor’s hammer, Mjolnir. Now Magnus faces his most dangerous trial yet. His cousin, Annabeth, recruits her boyfriend, Percy Jackson, to give Magnus some pointers, but will his training be enough? Loki is free from his chains. He’s readying Naglfar, the Ship of the Dead, complete with a host of giants and zombies, to sail against the Asgardian gods and begin the final battle of Ragnarok. It’s up to Magnus and his friends to stop him, but to do so they will have to sail across the oceans of Midgard, Jotunheim, and Niflheim in a desperate race to reach Naglfar before it’s ready to sail. Along the way, they will face angry sea gods, hostile giants, and an evil fire-breathing dragon. Magnus’s biggest challenge will be facing his own inner demons. Does he have what it takes to outwit the wily trickster god?blew me away. I love the elements of fandom love, comic con and also the average girls falls for a movie star all with a adorable fairy tale twist. I love both characters and read this book so fast. It was so unique book but it also just brought tears to me eyes throughout the book both tears of joy and sadness. It was such a fast book to read and I adored the characters so much.

My Thoughts:

I really adored this series so much. I loved how this series tied everything together but with Rick humor and myths It was such a fun read. I thought this book really solidified my one of my favorite book themes including found family. I just really adored this cast of characters so much and how diverse it became. I loved how the romantic entanglements occurred in this novel AND I really just love Magnus Humor. I also grew to enjoy the various members on his quests. I felt like we really got learn more about these characters that we spent two books with. I adored the connection back to the greek and roman world and PERCY cameo made my life! I def really enjoyed this series and just want more set in this world!

The Creature of the Pines: Non-Spoiler Review!!!

The Creature of The Pines by Adam Gidwitz

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Published by  Dutton Books for Young Readers on April 10, 2018

Genres: Middle Grade, Action Adventure

Pages: 180

Format: Audio book

Source: Rented

2018 challenge:

Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads

I would give this book 3.5 for a review.

Summary!!

Are you ready to protect the creatures of myth and legend? Then you belong in The Unicorn Rescue Society. HURRY–THE CREATURES NEED YOU!

Elliot Eisner isn’t exactly thrilled with the first day at his new school. His class is going on a field trip to a creepy forest called the Pine Barrens. The trip is being led by Professor Fauna, the weirdest teacher
Elliot has ever met. And the only kid who will talk to Elliot, Uchenna Devereaux, isn’t afraid of danger. She likes danger.

Elliot and Uchenna are about to become part of a secret group of adventurers, The Unicorn Rescue Society, whose goal is to protect and defend the world’s mythical creatures. Together with Professor Fauna, Elliot and Uchenna must help rescue a Jersey Devil from a duo of conniving, greedy billionaires, the Schmoke Brothers.

Join Elliot and Uchenna on their very first quest as members of the Unicorn Rescue Society in this brand-new fantasy-adventure series from Adam Gidwitz, the beloved bestselling and Newbery Honor-winning author of The Inquisitors Tale and A Tale Dark & Grimm. Illustrated throughout, this is the perfect fit for newly independent readers looking for a story full of adventure, fun, and friendship.

My Thoughts:

I listened to this audiobook and found it to be adorable. I really loved the adventure aspects and just how fun and fast pace this story was. I loved it so much. I read it so fast and just loved the characters a lot. I think younger kids will adore this book, because the kids really were the heroes in this story. I enjoyed how this book did tackle some history elements in the story telling. I def will be getting the sequel to read. This is great starter series for younger readers or even a great read aloud book as well