We received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review through the Juniper Grove Review Library.
Author: Ash Toroid
Published: July 3rd, 2015
Age Recommendation: 9+
Ever wondered what happened to the teeth you left under your pillow?
When Ellie’s older brother is turning thirteen, she want’s to see the ‘transformation’ into a teenager for herself. Ellie hides in a cupboard and waits. She is shocked to witness her brother kidnapped by goblins and replaced with a clone. A passing Tooth-Fairy is drawn by the use of magic and gets caught up in the commotion, to discover that Ellie is descended from the legendary Merlin. Together they embark upon an adventure for Ellie to rescue her brother, whose destiny begins to take shape as he must attempt to incite a rebellion against the goblins that try to enslave him. The siblings’ combine their efforts with the fairies in their fateful struggle against the Tooth-Goblins.
I was in the mood for a lighter read and this book, written for the younger end of YA, suited me perfectly. It is a fantasy adventure book that opens with a girl spying on her older brother on the eve of his thirteenth birthday, hoping to see the fabled transformation into a teenager. What she witnesses is far more literal than expected. As the boy sleeps, some goblins appear through a magical portal, cast a spell on the sleeping boy and take him away through the portal. With the goblins arrived a second version of the boy – a clone that and is left in his place.
This was an exciting and original plot that quickly introduced some interesting characters. It flows well into an exotically created magical world (once they travel to the fairy world). But what worked really well in this book was that it follows two plots that flow along together very well, for while the girl (Ellie) is trying to rescue him, her brother (Duncan) also gets a strong role in the book. Due to inheriting the other half of Merlin’s (their ancestor’s) legacy, he has a magical ring that protects him from goblin mind-control. This allows him to start a rebellion against the goblins while his younger sister is learning to unleash increasingly dangerous magic (I love a strong female lead). The two plots are kept largely separate for most of the book but work brilliantly together, with a great pace. Bearing in mind that this is not a particularly long book, there was a surprising amount of action that really kept my attention.
While there were some aspects where I personally wanted a bit more detail and background, I thought the balance with keeping it from getting too long (to keep it suitable for younger readers) was achieved quite well. As the Harry Potter books highlighted to everyone, books written for younger readers can be enjoyed by all ages and this was a welcome reminder of that.
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