Storybound

Storybound is a children’s fantasy book written by Marissa Burt. It is a part of a duology about Una Fairchild and her adventures in Story. This book is aimed at children 10-13 years old, but I think even younger kids might like it. Even though the heroine of the book is twelve years old.

This is one of those novels where the heroine disappears into a book where she finds a magical land where all the characters she always thought were only fictional prove to be real. Una Fairchild falls into Story in the middle of Peter’s practical examination where he has to fight a dragon in order to save a lady in distress. When he discovers Una in the cave he thinks she might be another maiden in need of a knight so he tries to save her too. But Una is not brought up to be a lady and she is more than ready to try to save herself. Later, Peter and Una become friends and Una joins him in the school where he is training to become a storybook character. But why has Una really come to Story? Will she ever get back to her real world? And who is the mysterious lady in red lurking around talking about Write-Ins?

I loved this story, and the plot, even though it has been told many times before, is original and creative. This book reminded me a lot of Chris Colfer’s “The Land of Stories” series, which has much of the same storyline. This book however, is a richer, but also more demanding read. It took me a long time to get into the story, and much of the plot is revealed through dialogue (there is a lot of eavesdropping) and reading of passages in books. The action part comes at the end of the book, something that can require too much patience for a young child. I found that the language didn’t flow as easily as I would have liked in a children’s book, but having said that, the book is very popular, so it might just be a personal preference thing.

I would definitely recommend this book, but for children who are a little impatient and like more action-driven books I would rather suggest checking out Chris Colfer’s “The Land of Stories” series.

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Bliss

Bliss is a children’s book written by Kathryn Littlewood. The book is aimed at children from 9 to 12 years old, and the main target is girls. I would say the book can even be enjoyed by younger readers from 7 and up.

Bliss is the name of Rosemary’s family’s magical bakery, and magical, in this context, is meant literally. The Bliss family is in the possession of an ancient cook book with recipes that can cure the common cold, make people truthful or fall head over heels in love with each other. The book needs to be guarded carefully so that it doesn’t fall into the wrong hands, and when Rosemary’s parents have to go away for a week, this task falls on Rosemary.
But as soon as Rosemary’s parents have left, a mysterious glamorous stranger appears in the bakery claiming to be the children’s long lost aunt. Aunt Lily is everything Rosemary has ever dreamt of being; popular, exotic, adventurous and drop dead gorgeous. But why does this beautiful aunt give Rosemary such a gnawing feeling in her guts, could she be someone else entirely? Even someone with sinister intentions?

This book is light-hearted, funny, sweet, and an absolute treat for kids who love cakes and baking. I can already hear my almost-nine-Year-old neighbor laughing in delight at some of the recipes-gone-wrong parts of the book. It is a light read, but perhaps a bit slow-paced. It reminds me of Roald Dahl, Alan Snow and David Walliams’ books, but this one is definitely for girls. It is perhaps a bit too childish for adults to enjoy, but I think it would be wonderful to read together with a little girl.

The only thing I would perhaps change about the book is the lack of descriptions and those little details that add so much magic to books like this; books that are atmospheric rather than action-driven. But that is just me, and I know many kids prefer more to-the-point language.

I would absolutely recommend this book to little girls from seven and up, especially girls who love baking, magic and funny things. 😄😄😄

The Iron Trial

The Iron Trial is the first book in a fantasy series called “The Magisterium Series” written by Cassandra Clare and Holly Black. The book is said to be aimed at children between 9 and 12, but I would say it will suit young teenagers more.

The Iron Trial is about 12 year old Call and his two friends Tamara and Aaron who are all apprenticed to the same master in an underground school of magic called the Magisterium. In the Magisterium young mages are taught to control elemental magic and fight against the chaos-ridden. It is a classical plot where good has to stand up against evil, but the evil in this book is the chaos, the blankness, the nothingness, and sometimes good and evil are all mixed up and can be hard to tell apart, and that is when the line between chaos and order becomes blurry.

I can’t not say how much this book reminded me of the Harry Potter series, there is a lot of similar twists to the plot, and sometimes I felt as though I was reading about Ron, Harry and Hermione, but I mean that in a good way. Who wouldn’t want to be compared to the great J.K Rowling!? But this book however, is much more action-driven, and leaves out the little details and the characteristics that make the Harry Potter books so special. Still, I loved the book as a pure thrilling and entertaining read that will definitely catch the attention of young fantasy-loving readers. It is also one of those books you can thoroughly enjoy as an adult too.

The only thing I will say is that I did not feel that the characters were 12 years old, the way they talked and behaved was more like teenagers in my opinion. And some of the magical explanations will definitely go over the heads of 9 year olds.

Having said that, I devoured this book, and did not put it down until it was finished. And I will definitely continue reading the other books in the series.😊👍🏻

So I give this book five out of five stars! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I highly recommend ” The Iron Trial” to young teenagers and everyone else with a taste for the magical realm!