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The Blackhope Enigma

(The Blackhope Enigma #1)

3.53  ·  Rating details ·  566 ratings  ·  123 reviews
When Sunni Forrest’s stepbrother accidentally transports himself into a Renaissance painting, she and her friend Blaise set out to bring him back. They find themselves in a strange world of labyrinths, monsters and pirates.

Can they evade their greedy pursuers? And will they ever find their way home?
Hardcover, 280 pages
Published August 9th 2011 by Templar (first published October 1st 2010)
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3.53  · 
Rating details
 ·  566 ratings  ·  123 reviews

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Nov 20, 2011 rated it did not like it
I almost put this book down two sentences in, when we were told that the main character's name is Sunni Forrest [really?], but for reasons unknown, I kept reading.

I only kept reading for another 100 pages, and then happily abandoned it. There is an entire trainload of poorly-executed exposition; the characters are flat, and the plot non-existent. And I absolutely did not buy that, after her stepbrother vanished, Sunni would immediately leap to the conclusion that he'd been sucked into a painting
Jun 10, 2011 rated it it was ok
Being transported through/into paintings is hardly a new gimmick in fantasy (especially aimed at the younger set) but it is one that I like. I give Flavin credit for actually developing the world-inside-the-painting a bit, instead of making it extremely limited and static as many authors do with this concept (see The Shadows for an example of what I'm talking about). I liked that techniques like underpainting played a role. Beyond that, however, this book did nothing for me. Flat characters, fla ...more
Lupe Dominguez
Mar 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya-fantasy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 05, 2011 rated it did not like it
Blackhope Enigma was a boring book. It was an easy read, but it still took me ages to get through it because I just couldn't relate to the characters.
As many other readers have pointed out, their names are just ridiculous. Sunni Forrest. When I read that name, I was like, yeah, you got to be kidding me. What the hell? Sunni Forrest?
Reading a book about a girl with a name like that is painful. When I think of "Sunni Forrest", I think of a 6-year old girl with huge red spectacles, even huger fron
Nov 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
The blurb states: "Recommended for lovers of mythology and monsters, mystery and magic." Totally not my style. In most cases I would have passed over it without a second though. I'm so glad I didn't.

This book was easy to fall right into, just as Dean and Sunni "fall" into a painting and get wrapped up in adventures there as they try to find their way back. The story is full of imagination and, yes, "mystery and magic", but it somehow manages to stay within the realms of realism as well. You alm
Hylary Locsin
Feb 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
Originally posted on my blog: ! Check it out for more reviews!

Fourteen-year-old Sunni Forrest and her classmate Blaise Doran are both studying famous Renaissance artist Fausto Corvo for a project at their English school. Sunni enjoyed getting top marks in her class for her artistic skills, that is until Blaise blew in from America and wowed everyone with his intricate drawings. One afternoon while studying a painting called The Mariner’s Return to Arcadia ho
Apr 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing
A new favorite for sure. Teresa Flavin blends magic, art history and mythology into a wonderful adventure. Sunni and Blaise are art students studying the Medeival painter Fausto Corvo for a school project. When Sunni, her step-brother Dean & Blaise go to The Blackhope Tower to see Corvo's famous painting The Mariner's Return to Arcadia, Dean suddenly disappears in a labyrinth in the tower. He stumbled across a key word in the painting's description, when spoke in repetition in the labyrinth ...more
Harley Bennett
Jun 13, 2017 rated it liked it
Sunni's step-brother Dean accidentally transports himself into a painting, she has to follow to rescue him. Her Friend Blaise plans to follow but is delayed until the following day. Once Sunni finds Dean, they begin searching for a way out. Unfortunately for them, no one seems to know the way. The journey that follows is full of peril and impeded by Marin, a former apprentice of Fausto Corvo, the artist who painted the enchanted painting. Sunni manages to win Marin's trust and he becomes an ally ...more
Feb 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book, it grabs your attention right from the start and just keeps you hanging on. I read this in one go as I couldn't bear to put it down.

the characters in this story were brilliant, I really liked the main characters, Blaise, Sunni and Dean, which is unusual for me and a young adult book, the bad guy, Angus, was great, he was so two-faced and deceptive, you never knew what he was going to do next. What i really liked about this book were the other characters, ones that it wasn't en
Veronica The Demigod
Jul 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Victoria Jones
Nov 30, 2017 rated it liked it
This book honestly had a very slow start. I had to convince myself it would get better. As I continue used reading this book it got slightly interesting the farther I got. About half threw so about chapter 13 did it really catch my attention. The action started to leave me on the edge of my seat. The character that really brought me to enjoy the book would be Marin. Once he was introduced it got interesting. It was ok before just very boring. Karin brought danger and excitement. After I finished ...more
Chris Meads
May 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
Sunni Forrest and her stepbrother along with her friend Blaise are sitting in the Blackhope Tower, making a sketch of "The Mariner's Return" by Fausto Corvo. They have heard about the enchanted paintings but that's all they know that it is a rumor the paintings exist. Dean is walking the labyrinth saying the word "chiaroscuro". When he gets to the middle, he disappears! Sunni and Blaise notice him in the painting and freak! How did he get there? How are they going to get him out?

So many things h
Nov 08, 2018 rated it liked it
The Blackhope Enigma by Teresa Flavin is a fantasy book that centers on a painting by an artist who disappeared centuries ago. Some characters do have crushes on others, but it’s not horrible. Three children get drawn into the painting at different times (one on accident, one after that child, and one after the both of them) and have to navigate through a maze, sail across a sea, decipher a map, and then get through an island’s obstacles, as well as the people who live in the painting, to get ho ...more
Apurva Khadye
Jun 27, 2018 rated it liked it
Sunniva and Blaise are studying famous painter Fausto Corvo for their school project but they accidentally unravel mysterious world created by Corvo himself. It was slow at beginning. took me a while to become interested in it but once it started it was a good read. Ms. Flavin has wonderfully created amalgamation of art history mystery and adventure. Book moves on good pace. Plot is well thought of. Characters however I felt bit clichéd. Sunni come across as bit stupid. Her brother Dean is cool. ...more
Jan 28, 2018 rated it liked it
The plot seemed fairly original, and it was creative enough to keep me interested. The characters were pretty generic, and didn’t really act or speak like children. The author does a good job at making you hate the villain, though not a good job at making you like the protagonists. I really didn’t care what happened to them. But it still kept me interested, even if it was due to the concept and creativity.
Noreen Anastasia
Jan 23, 2019 rated it liked it
I'm so happy I stumbled upon this YA fantasy book on a recent trip. The characters, while confusing at first to keep together, were delightful. It was an interesting and very definitely not overdone tale of disappearing into a painting, facing adventures, rescuing whom you must, and coming out the other side. Every hero must go to hell first, right? Sunni nailed it, and so did Teresa Flavin.
Feb 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I stumbled upon this book and was very glad I did. This story grabs you right from the start. It’s a great adventure story that a art lover would love to read or a teen who likes a page turner with steady action.
Georgen Charnes
Nov 27, 2017 rated it it was ok
Found myself skimming as it lost my interest; characters are a bit flat.
Jul 29, 2018 rated it did not like it
I couldn't finish this. Too many characters that I didn't care about. The story drags.
Jan 11, 2019 rated it did not like it
Did Not Finish. Spent pages 11 to 110 thinking "am I really going to keep reading this?" thankfully, I'm not.
Heather Taylor
Oct 28, 2016 rated it did not like it
DNF. The concept was cool but that was the only good thing. The author didn't give me anything about the characters to make me care about them or to want to finish the book.
Julian Ramirez
Sep 28, 2016 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Readers who enjoy Fanstasy
The book I read was The Blackhope Enigma by Teresa Flavin. In the beginning of the book, I wasn't too sure how much I liked it. The one thing that caught my attention was **Spoiler Alert*** was when Dean chanted Chiaroscuro to annoy his sister, but then was transported into the painting.
The story is about students Sunni Forest, Blaise Doran, and Sunni's step brother Dean. In the beginning Sunni goes to Blackhope tower to study the works of Fausto Corvo a marvelous artist. Then Dean chants the
Feb 25, 2012 rated it really liked it
Sunni was used to her step-brother misbehaving, but this was a bit much even for her. One minute he was loudly rambling on while she and her classmate were trying to concentrate on their school project and the next he's gone. They're in an old castle room with no windows and only one way out but she didn't see him leave through the door. And what was that strange spark of light in the painting on the wall just after he disappeared? There's only one solution: as crazy as it sounds he must have di ...more
Mar 26, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Blackhope Enigma is a fun mystery that all starts when Sunni’s stepbrother, Dean, accidentally transports himself into one of Fausto Corvo’s magical paintings. Sunni, determined to get him back, follows the labyrinth path and joins him in the picture, leaving Blaise standing alone and shortly thereafter being shuffled out of the room by a guard. Determined to get Sunni and Dean out, Blaise finds a way into the picture with them, despite the media and police crowds searching for two lost kids ...more
Jul 01, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads-wins
COVER ART: A (Beautiful, I love it.)
ORIGINALITY: B+ (It reminded me of the Narnia books. But that's a good thing :) )
EXCITEMENT: B (Excitement level could have bren more intense around the ship scenes,
maybe the giant crabs? A show down between Corvo and Angus at the end?))
WRITING/DELIVERY: B+ (Only a few very minor typos.)

RECOMMEND: Yes. For any person of any age who enjoys reading magical adventure books.

Ms Flavin took me into a whole new world of adventure. I absolutely loved
Jul 25, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone, no matter what their age!
The Blackhope Enigma is an exciting adventure in which Sunni’s step-brother Dean finds himself accidentally transported into a curious Renaissance painting by Fausto Corvo which hangs in the Mariner’s Chamber in Blackhope Tower. Sunni and her friend Blaise set out to rescue him and they find themselves lost in a strange and dangerous world. They meet others along their journey, but just who should they trust? Can all three overcome the dangers and find their way out of the painting and home... a ...more
Aug 19, 2011 rated it really liked it
Creating a world is not only the work of an author, it is also the domain of an artist and in The Blackhope Enigma, Teresa Flavin has combined the two to create a fascinating magical mystery adventure.

From the very first page I was thrilled to discover that this is a novel from an author who drew inspiration from her career as an artist and illustrator. It’s actually a very refreshing way of writing, it’s almost like Teresa is writing out one of those enormous landscape paintings where if you lo
Mar 23, 2011 rated it really liked it
Paintings and Labyrinths and Monsters, Oh My!

Sunni and step-brother, Dean, are at Blackhope Castle so Sunni can work on an art project. While Sunni is studying a painting, Dean studies the labyrinth on the floor and accidently transports himself into the painting…Sunni manages to figure out how he did it and follows him…leaving her friend Blaise as the only person who knows what is going on.

Meanwhile, Sunni and Dean must figure out how to get themselves back out of the painting. Along the way th
Serendipity Reviews
Aug 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
From the first chapter,you are sucked straight into the labyrinth and the story sets off on a hearty pace, barely allowing you to catch your breath, let alone calculate your bearings. I literally felt like I had been sucked into the Renaissance painting too. Just by sheer chance, Sunni's step brother, Dean is transported first into a world that no one knew existed. Luckily Sunni worked out exactly how he had got sucked into the labyrinth and went straight in after him.

The scenes within the pain
Lisa Nocita
Oct 07, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya-2011
Sunni is studying one of the works of her favorite artist Fausto Corvo for a school project when she discovers that a classmate, Blaise, is studying the same work. She is dismayed because she worries that Blaise may be a better artist than she. She is also faintly annoyed because all the girls seem to swoon for him. It turns out, however, that Blaise has no intention of giving up his pursuit of the subject and convinces Sunni that they can both work on the same subject. Her sketch is interrupted ...more
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Goodreads Librari...: ISBN 0763662062 page count for e-book 5 27 Feb 12, 2018 03:51PM  

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I'm a children's book illustrator who branched out into writing art-based fantasy-mystery novels for children and young people. My first illustrated novel, THE BLACKHOPE ENIGMA (Templar Publishing UK, 2010; Candlewick, 2011) was shortlisted for a number of UK children's book awards and was a Junior Library Guild Selection in the USA. The sequel, THE CRIMSON SHARD (Templar UK, 2011 and Candlewick, ...more

Other books in the series

The Blackhope Enigma (3 books)
  • The Crimson Shard  (The Blackhope Enigma, #2)
  • The Shadow Lantern  (The Blackhope Enigma, #3)
“That’s where they found the skeletons. Right where you’re standing.” 2 likes
“The riders, clad in crimson and black, stopped to scan the maze. Blaise shrank into the hedge, but one keen-eyed hunter spied him. He raised his crossbow, took careful aim and fired.” 2 likes
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