A few months ago, I reviewed a book called Glimmers by Barbara Brooke that I defined as feel-good escapist chicklit with a paranormal twist that reminded me slightly of one of my favourite TV programmes as a child. I was therefore really interested to learn that the author also writes children's books, under the pen-name H.B.Bolton, and she kindly sent me through The Serpent's Ring, the first book in the Relics of Mysticus series, to review.
The title and the front cover art immediately set the scene so you know that you'll be in for action-packed stories of vengeful gods and goddesses, magical objects and scary sea monsters that wouldn't be out of place in a book of Greek mythology. I was frequently reminded of the tales of Jason and the Argonauts and Odysseus that I studied at school but I also love the fact that the unwitting teen heroes, brother and sister Evan and Claire, cleverly chosen to appeal as much to girls as boys, retain their down-to-earth normality that contrasts, often quite humorously, with the incredible adventures going on around them.
Tweens and teens will love the fast-paced action, the clever magic and the mystical creatures but parents will also appreciate the subtle subtext that suggests you should appreciate your parents and make the most of the time you have with them ! There are other subtle life-lessons in there too, such as environmental issues, admitting when you are wrong and making sure you look at the bigger picture so you don't accuse an innocent scapegoat unfairly.
I had really enjoyed reading Glimmers so I wasn't sure how such an accomplished adult chicklit author would manage to turn her hand to fantastical tween and teen-oriented literature. Well, the two genres may be very different but she really does pull it off, creating an exciting, original adventure story that will have young readers keen to read the whole series to see what other adventures Evan and Claire become embroiled in.
star rating : 4/5
RRP : £6.40
- Paperback: 220 pages
- Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (29 July 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1478332573
- ISBN-13: 978-1478332572
Disclosure : I received a review copy of the book.
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