Without further ado, here is the roundup!
First off, the two Aster Wood Books:
I grabbed these pretty much entirely because of the cover art. When I busted out the first one, I didn’t expect much–but then the worldbuilding got me. Imagine a bunch of planets as dots on paper. Now crumple that paper into a ball. That’s the worlds of the Fold, and they’re in danger, because somebody has screwed with the Fold itself. That’s Aster Wood’s family legacy, and he has to fix it before all the worlds die–especially Earth.
The way the world-teleporting works, the way the magic works, the fun of running around a science-based plot while dealing with spells and swords–it’s great fun. Sure, it has problems with odd word usage, or parts that drag, but the worldbuilding kept me reading. I’m looking forward to the next books in the series.
The kids and I have been following the Troubletwisters books for two years in a row, and this is the last one. The proper title (which seems to be the European one) is Missing: Presumed Evil, which fans of the series would understand immediately. Unfortunately, American readers are way too dumb for a title like that.
This was a great ending to the series–the big bad is dealt with, all secrets are revealed, and the twin heroes triumph at last. The kids enjoyed it a lot. There is a part lifted straight out of the third Pirates of the Caribbean movie (the white sand desert Hell with the stranded ship), but apparently that scene was so iconic, lots of authors have copied it. I’ve seen it in at least one other book. So if that doesn’t put you off, pick up the series. It’s a fine, middle of the road juvenile fiction fantasy (otherwise known as middle grade).
This is book 2 in a series about people who turn into tornadoes. I had to read it just to see how it happened. Take werewolves, who turn into monsters at the full moon. But make it people who turn into killer tornadoes during thunderstorms. But keep the “savage beast within” thing. And that’s these books.
The first book, the heroine gets turned. This second book, she’s dealing with becoming a monster–it’s getting worse–and also dealing with a fierce love triangle. It’s Young Adult to the hilt, but also edge of your seat thriller. This series and author needs way more attention than they’re getting.
Last but not least, the Meh of the collection: a Christian allegorical fantasy. A girl gets sucked into a storybook, where she’s immediately forced to assume the role of one of the missing princess. But she runs away to try to find the real princess, and winds up far outside the boundaries of the Plot.
The book had some pretty good ideas, like the book changing every time someone reads it, and the centaur army and stuff. But the Author was Aslan with the name changed, and–let’s face it–when the owl gritted his teeth, I about threw my ipod across the room. The romance was forced and flat, and the ending was unsatisfying.
So that was the books I’ve recently read! Kind of an eclectic collection, but I’m trying to read tons of different things these days. Especially indie books, to kind of give a hand to indie authors. Everything except The Missing was indie. 🙂
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