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review 2017-09-09 22:07
Book Review of Zombie Baker by J S Rumble
Zombie Baker - J. F. S. Rumble

Fred is one of those rare boys that actually likes going to school… well, he did until now. He started getting picked on for something he has no control over… being a zombie. 
Most people think of zombies as mindless creatures that roam the world searching for others to infect, in fact that couldn’t be further from the truth. All Fred wants to do is bake! 

He dreams of opening his very own cake shop one day, but pastry school is extremely expensive! Then an opportunity comes along that could help his dreams become reality.

 

Review 5*

 

This is a charming children's chapter book. I loved it!

 

Fred is a fantastic character. I really liked him. He is a kind and loving boy (not sure of exact age but think around eleven or twelve). He also loves to bake and dreams of owning his own bakery one day. Unfortunately, he has to deal with school bullies.

 

This story is told in a memoir style through Fred's eyes and takes the reader on a journey of discovery. Fred may be a zombie, but he has the same emotions as the rest of us. He gets excited, happy, sad, angry and frustrated by most of the same situations as ordinary humans.

 

This book is ideal for children with short attention spans as it's only 66 pages long. This story tackles the issue of bullying and shows that it's okay to be different, and with hard work you can attain your dream (whatever it may be). There are some interesting characters introduced and I really liked Fred's friends, Ervin, James and Ben, as they stand by him even though he's different to them. They like him just the way he is. I did feel sorry for Ervin during one scene though. He had to trust Fred even though he was terrified, but it made me like him even more and wish he was my friend too. There is action and adventure, with enough excitement to keep a young reader's attention. I love baking too, so reading about the cake Fred baked made my mouth water. So much so that I ended up baking a cake for myself later. I must admit that I would have loved if the story was longer, but then it wouldn't be a chapter book. Nevertheless, I was sad to reach the end even though it ended satisfactorily.

 

J.S. Rumble has written an entertaining chapter book that I thoroughly enjoyed. I love her writing style, which is not particularly fast paced though easy enough for children to follow whether reading on their own, or being read to by their parents. The flow is wonderful too. This is the second book I've read by this author and I would definitely consider reading more of her books in the future.

 

I highly recommend this chapter book to young children aged 5-10, and to adults looking for a chapter book to keep their little ones entertained. - Lynn Worton

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review 2017-05-20 21:44
Book Review of Ronaldo: The Reindeer Flying Academy by Maxine Sylvester
Ronaldo: The Reindeer Flying Academy - Maxine Sylvester,Maxine Sylvester

Ronaldo is the top flying cadet at the prestigious Reindeer Flying Academy. He dreams of getting his flying license and becoming one of Santa's reindeer, just like his hero, Vixen.

 

In the first adventure in the Ronaldo series, the second year flying cadets face their toughest ever flying test – The Endurance Challenge. Will Ronaldo be victorious and lift the silver cup? Or will mean brothers Dasher, Comet and Prancer ruin his chance for success?

 

Review 5*

 

This the first book in a new chapter book series aimed at 5-10 year olds. I loved it!

 

Ronaldo is a fantastic character. He is a young reindeer, trying to follow in the footsteps of his Granddad and his hero, Vixen, as a cadet in the Reindeer Flying Academy. He is determined to become one of Santa's reindeer. I really liked his determination, perseverance and courage.

 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author with no expectation of a positive review.

 

First off, I would like to say that I love the cover. It captures the story perfectly. Secondly, the story was completely entertaining. There are some interesting characters to go with the story and one of my favourites (besides Ronaldo) is his best friend Rudi. He is funny, kind and sweet, though he would probably deny it.

 

The story is short, but it is full of action. It also full of educational tit bits about hygiene, keeping warm in freezing weather, building confidence, perseverance and determination. There is also a little bit about bullying. I found it a joy to read. Being a chapter book, it is perfect for a child to read on their own (depending on reading ability and age of course), and will keep them hooked. If you have a child/children with short attention spans, it would be easy to read a chapter or two with them before bedtime. I loved the Endurance Challenge scene as I love hot chocolate too, so I could imagine Ronaldo flying around thinking about it keeping him warm; I know it keeps me warm on cold winter nights. The story is also peppered with humourous events that will thoroughly entertain the young reader. There are also illustrations of the characters and the events that are extremely well drawn and compliment the book perfectly. Ronaldo learns a valuable lesson in the story and, hopefully, the child reading it will too. I must admit that I did feel sad when I reached the end of the book. Not because it ended sadly (because it didn't), but because the story had finished. I am now looking forward to reading more of Ronaldo's adventures when I have a chance.

 

Maxine Sylvester has written a fabulous chapter book. I love her imagination. I also love her writing style, which is fast paced but not rushed, it also has a lot of warmth and humour woven into it and is easy for a child to follow. The flow is wonderful and kept me turning the pages. I would definitely consider reading more of her books in the future.

 

I highly recommend this book to young readers aged 5-10, but as this book can be read to children younger than this by their parents, I also recommend this book to children aged 3 upwards. I also recommend this book to adults who love reading chapter/middle grade books. - Lynn Worton

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review 2017-04-21 12:10
Book Review of Giselda The Witch by J S Rumble
Giselda The Witch - J. F. S. Rumble

Giselda discovers that she will not be attending the same school as her friends; instead she will be going to Wigmore’s school for witches. Due to an unfortunate mistake she arrives a bit earlier than even she expected but soon settles in and makes a new friend through the fence.

 

Things are going well until some girls find out how she arrived at school and start to tease her about it. To prove that she is just as good at magic as everybody else Giselda agrees to travel up the mountain and steal from the dragon that lives there.

 

Review 5*

 

This is a sweet children's book aimed at children aged 4-10 years old. I loved it!

 

Giselda is a wonderful character and I really liked her. She is an eight year-old girl who finds out that she will not be attending the local school with her friends as she is a witch. Not realising water and witches don't mix, Giselda finds herself travelling to the school in a most unconventional way. When her classmates find out how she arrived at the school, she is teased badly. In order to prove she is good at magic, she accepts a dare.

 

As I said above, this book is a sweet children's book with an adventure included. It is ideal for children with short attention spans. It tackles topics such as friendship, bullying/teasing and teamwork. The school is not your typical witch/wizard school, nor is it like Hogwarts. Wigmore teaches their students to be bad (not evil) and play tricks on others. I liked meeting the other characters too. Tom is a young wizard who befriends Giselda through the fence that separates the two sections (girls and boys are taught separately). Beatrice and Emma are Giselda's nemeses and tease her unmercifully until danger in the form of a dragon makes them band together to solve a dangerous situation.

 

J.S. Rumble has written an entertaining chapter book that I thoroughly enjoyed. I love her writing style, which is not particularly fast paced though easy enough for children to follow whether reading on their own, or being read to by their parents. The flow is wonderful too. I would definitely consider reading more of her books in the future.

 

I highly recommend this chapter book to young children aged 4-10, and to adults looking for a chapter book to keep their little ones entertained. - Lynn Worton

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review 2017-04-03 21:15
Book Review of Arabelle: And The Star Crystal (Arabelle's Adventures Book 1) by Julia Stilchen
Arabelle: And the Star Crystal (Arabelle's Adventures) (Volume 1) - Julia Lela Stilchen

Arabelle’s Adventures Chapter Book Series

 

Venture off into the magical land of Wistaria where there are mages, elves, fairies, mermaids, magical creatures, and more!

 

Arabelle is looking forward to obtaining her first magical star at the Starfall Ceremony. When the day finally arrives, her best friend Yunika goes missing. Will Arabelle be able to find her bff and still make it to the Starfall Ceremony in time to catch her first falling star?

 

Arabelle is the youngest of all mages. She doesn’t let that stop her from trying her best. Even if it means confronting dragons, traveling throughout the twists and turns in the land of Wistaria, and taking on any challenge she encounters. Seeking to improve her skills, she teams up with her besties on a fun filled magical adventure.

 

Set in a fantasy setting filled with magical adventures, each story encourages imagination while lightly addressing topics of universal themes: self-esteem, self-acceptance, teamwork, friendship, and problem solving skills.

 

Review 5*

 

This is the first book in Arabelle’s Adventures Chapter Book Series. I absolutely loved it!

 

Arabelle is a wonderful character, I really liked her. She is a young mage who is determined to catch her first magical star at the Starfall Ceremony. Unfortunately, her best friend, Yunika (who happens to be a human shape-shifting unicorn), has gone missing shortly before the event is due to begin, so with the help of her other friends, Kitsy (a furry - a human but with animal ears and tail) and Pip (a talking parakeet), Arabelle finds herself on a rescue mission. Can she find her friend in time, or will she lose the chance to catch her first star?

 

This is a fantastic children's chapter book, full of action, adventure and danger. It is told through the eyes of Arabelle. The story is the perfect length for young readers who have a short attention span. It is entertaining, but also educational. The story teaches the reader about friendship, teamwork, building confidence, solving problems by thinking things through and achieving dreams through hard work and perseverance.

 

Each character in the book has different strengths and weaknesses, and they complement each other as they face difficult challenges. I must admit that I'm not sure I would like to meet up with the Lullaweeds from this tale, they look like pretty flowers but are plant-like creatures. Once they get their leaf like arms around you, it's hard to escape. *Shudder*

 

Julia Stilchen has written a fantastic chapter book that is full of imaginative description which allows the reader to picture the scenes with ease. Her characters are lifelike and likable, and her writing style is easy for children to follow and understand. I would definitely consider reading more of her books in the future.

 

This series of books are aimed at children aged 6-10. Depending on a child's reading ability, this book would be easy for a child to read either with the help of a parent or on their own. It would also make a wonderful bedtime story for younger children if read by a parent. However, I think that adults would also enjoy this story just as much as I did. - Lynn Worton

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