When Victoria Simcox sent me an email asking if I would review her book, The Magic Warble, on my blog, I have to admit, I reacted lukewarmly. I had never heard of her, didn't know how she got my name, and her book was "young adult fantasy fiction."
A "young adult" I'm not. The last fantasy fiction I read was The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings Trilogy, years and years ago. ( Most of my fantasy these days involves Boston Celtics like Kendrick Perkins and Paul Pierce, and whipped cream, but that's a whole other story!)
After some thought, I decided, albeit reluctantly, to read her book and do a review. I realized if I had published a book, I'd appreciate people reading it and giving it reviews, too.
The reluctance left me very quickly! By the end of the first chapter, I was intrigued by this tale of the self-proclaimed "misfit," twelve-year-old Kristina, and her pet rat Raymond. The story is so well-written, I found myself sympathetic and curious about this child and the adventure she was about to experience. Once I get into a story, I had trouble leaving it, and I finished the book in one day. It wasn't that I was under pressure to complete the book review. Ms. Simcox told me to take whatever time I needed and just let her know what day the review would be posted. No, it was the tale itself that kept me enthralled enough to want to see it through to the end quickly.
The author has fashioned some interesting characters like Davina, the 14 and 1/2 year-old baby-sitter with the coke-bottle glasses, Hester Crumefel and Graham Kepler, the classmates who torment Kristina in her real life. Then there's a whole assortment of characters Kristina meets when she finds herself in the land of Bernovem; talking animals, fairies, gnomes, dwarfs, a teenage prince, and an evil queen and her ugly "zeblocs."
The Magic Warble is a gift Kristina has been given, and she learns that the she is the "chosen one" who can break the evil witch's spell that has hung over the land of Bernovem for years. All she has to do is return the Warble to it's resting place...on the other side of the forest and on the top of a snow covered mountain. The teenage Prince Werrien travels with her on the journey. They encounter terror and treachery, the danknes of dungeons, and freezing cold along the way.
Even though this book is geared to young adults, I found I wasn't too old to be taken with the tale myself! Kristina's strength and resolve stand out. In Bernovem, talking animals and tiny, flying fairies all seem plausible! It was a fun read and I plan to pass it on to my grandson.
Victoria Simcox has graciously agreed to give a complimentary copy of The Magic Warble to one of my readers. If you would like to be chosen by random drawing to receive it, please leave a comment where it says "spectator shouts" below with your email address, so I can contact the winner. Or, if you can't wait to read the book, you can click on the Amazon ad at the beginning of this post and order your own copy now!
For an extra entry, visit Victoria's websites: http://www.themagicwarble.com/ or www.victoriasimcox.blogspot.com and leave a comment. Then let me know that you did. You have until 2/15/11 to enter! The winner fo the drawing will be annouced 2?16/11.