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Book Reviews: The Firebird Chronicles, Books 1 & 2 by Daniel Ingram-Brown

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[Disclaimer: I have received these books for free from the author for a fair and unbiased review. All of the opinions are my own and I have not been bribed or held for ransom to write this review. Is this how disclaimers work? I've never written one before. Nailed it!]

Book(s): The Firebird Chronicles: Rise of the Shadow Stealers (book #1) and The Firebird Chronicles: The Nemesis Charm (book #2) (being released later this month- May 2016)

Author: Daniel Ingram-Brown

Genre: Children's fiction

Subgenre: Fantasy, adventure

My Review and Thoughts: I'm going to be completely honest and say that I had absolutely no idea what to expect from Rise of the Shadow Stealers. In a way, I think that was the perfect way to go in and start this sweeping adventure. It will appeal to kids and that kid inside of you who never really grew up and likes to remind you of the happy carefree days of your childhood (just me?). From the first page I was entranced by the story.

We start off with Fletcher and Scoop, a boy and girl (respectively), who wake up in their rooms at Blotting's Academy on the mysterious and imaginative Fullstop Island. They have no memory of how they got there but they (and us) are quickly swept up in the action as they learn they are now attending a school that will teach them all about stories: to tell them, be told them, and even become part of the stories. Fletcher and Scoop are appointed Apprentice Adventurers and are quickly on a quest to figure out why they can't remember anything, and also to help right the dark injustice that has settled on the island.

The less I say about the plot, the better. It's best just to learn along with Fletcher and Scoop about the island, and the role of stories and characters to the story line. The author writes with such ease and his descriptions are beautifully worded, whether they are describing a hilarious and colorful character or a heart-felt moment. I especially enjoyed his descriptions of Fletcher and Scoop: he is described as resembling an exclamation point and she of a question mark. It's creative and wonderful little bookish details like that that made me happy to know an author was honoring the world of literature. He has peppered in such little homages to the world of reading throughout the book. There was also such a clever twist near the end that brings a whole new (and yet very familiar) world into the mix.

I grew incredibly fond of the characters and was so glad that I had the second book, the Nemesis Charm to start. Fletcher and Scoop, are back a year later and a terrible sleeping sickness has fallen on the residents of Fullstop Island and the lands beyond it. It's up to the dynamic duo to pursue a quest, with the starting help of a powerful and dark Nemesis Charm, for the answers they need to combat this terrible illness that is wreaking havoc on the island, along with a chilling new villain (and an old familiar one) set on stopping them. Secondary characters that added personality and color in the first book, have a much more prominent placein the sequel and add flavor and spirit to the story, which flows just as well or even better than in the first book, but with a darker tone and pace. And just as the story reaches a crucial and deciding point, it ends of a cliff hanger (of course it does!).

Knowing that the series will be a trilogy, I was so relieved to know that I would eventually know how the story ends and what Scoop and Fletcher have to face in the end. Now all I have to do is wait for the next one to come out....whenever that'll be! (Hopefully soon)

Should You Read It: Yes, you should! Everyone loves a good fantasy/adventure series. It will be a big hit with kids, and with adults who can appreciate the classic literary acknowledgements and will get a kick out of them (I certainly did). This series has my stamp of approval on it. If you've ever wished you could go on a quest and explore a land of stories, this book is for you! And while you're there, have a tankard of Noveltwist for me :)

The Firebird Chronicles: Rise of the Shadow Stealers 
The Firebird Chronicles: The Nemesis Charm
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Check Out the Author:
Official Website

What did you think of my review? Have you read any of the two current books from the Firebird Chronicles? What did you think of them?

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