An epic young adult fantasy with a modern and creative twist. A humorous and mildly scary hero’s journey,...moreOriginal review posted at Layers of Thought.
An epic young adult fantasy with a modern and creative twist. A humorous and mildly scary hero’s journey, this book is perfect for smart youngsters from tween-age into ancient adulthood.
About: In a fantastical world where spells are created from magical languages, the main character Nicodermis is a trainee in the skills needed to create these spells. He believes himself to be an insignificant part of a bigger picture. There is a big problem with his spelling (he can’t), so his teachers place him with a variety of other “marginal” acolytes with various disabilities. Here he becomes a leader (of sorts) in a world which does other than appreciate them.
In this mountainous and almost medieval world, Nicodermis’ connection to his greater purpose is not quite clear and all is not well. Evil powers are bent on keeping everything as it is or worse - imbalanced and dark. They will do anything to stop the fates in motions of which Nicodermis is key.
My Thoughts: Fresh and inclusive of a wide variety of diverse types of characters, this is a fun read. Nary a bad word, or sexual reference, it’s a perfect read for young adults and those looking for a “clean” fantasy setting. The author has some interesting swaps for cursing which are in fact quite hilarious. Here are examples:
"Splattering spud”; “Ooo, you dirty son of a rat-eating butt dog!” And an example of a curse as bad as it gets - “Drink goat piss, you slimy pigeon penis”.
Kids of all ages will have to laugh at this. I did.
The characters are wonderful and loveable and Nicodermis is a very relate-able main character. A humble hero who is on his journey and refuses to admit that he may just be the one to save his world. There are also several flawed and interesting supporting characters - a blind old wise man with dreadlocks and magic gargoyles that are created from the written spells, a wonderful talking bird named Azure that loves to be scratched on its head (gosh darn cute and I want one), a dream dragon, and elemental ghosts. But don’t worry there are exciting and dark bits too involving a scary and ancient evil; also a clay Golem housing an amazing monster which is frightening and imaginative. This is definitely the beginning of an epic series.
An impressive first novel - the book has an easy to read style that is imbued with a subtle humor, a characteristic which is apparent on Blake Charlton’s blog and in his interviews. I cannot say one negative thing about this debut novel and am expecting some amazing fiction from this new and talented author. I can’t wait to read the next in this series, Spellbound, which I understand is even better than this first novel. 4 stars for this fun, creative and giggly debut novel.(less)
Actually 3.5 Stars *may include spoilers for some only the beginning premise is revealed*
Kristina is a smart girl on the verge of being a teenager, but...moreActually 3.5 Stars *may include spoilers for some only the beginning premise is revealed*
Kristina is a smart girl on the verge of being a teenager, but is essentially still a child. She is slightly awkward, wearing mismatched socks and a bit of an outcast at school. Her best friend is her rat, Raymond.
On the last day of school before Christmas vacation her teacher gives her a mysterious present – an unusual and light filled globe. She dismisses it until she falls into another realm through her family’s laundry shoot. There she discovers that she is in fact in the possession of a “Magic Warble”. It will save this fantastic realm from a very evil and heartless queen and she alone is responsible for replacing it in its rightful spot.
As the story enfolds Kristina will be helped and hindered by others on her journey. These characters are a displaced prince, a jealous fairy, misguided gnomes, conflicted dwarves, talking animals, monsters with horrible breath, and some of the friends whom at school view her as a wall flower - whom have also been pulled magically into this world.
This Magic Warble is a sweet introduction to fantasy for preteens and younger, especially girls. I can see a young person enjoying it by either reading it themselves or having it read to them. There are pictures strategically placed within the writing which is good for a younger reader helping them visualize. The language is mild and easy to follow. There is only a slight amount of violence, a few clichés, and one generalization that I noted about women mentioned. The main message is clearly of a moral nature, and the author succeeds in supporting the belief that faith is important. It is a lovely and mostly light story. (less)