Book Review | Rating – 4/5 | Genre – Young Adult Fantasy
I’ve had this book for many years now and read it a number of times. I remember wanting it as a fan of Chris Colfer from his time on Glee. When I first got the book I remember enjoying it, but not finding it as interesting to read as I thought it was going to be.
With a few years having passed and finding this book again while moving house, I thought it was fair to give this book a second shot, see if my opinion changed. Thankfully, it was an easy read so I could get through it fast enough. Well, here is what I thought…
Alex and Conner Bailey’s world is about to change, in this fast-paced adventure that uniquely combines our modern day world with the enchanting realm of classic fairy tales.
Through the mysterious powers of a cherished book of stories, they leave their world behind and find themselves in a foreign land full of wonder and magic where they come face-to-face with the fairy tale characters they grew up reading about.
But after a series of encounters with witches, wolves, goblins, and trolls alike, getting back home is going to be harder than they thought. (synopsis from Goodreads)
What did I like?
- Interesting twist on modern fairytales: it is what it says on the tin really. The book brings to life all the well-known characters, yet gives us a different take on them, now they’re older – they’re living their lives after the “happily ever after”. It made the characters seem so real and much more enjoyable than their “Disney” counterparts. Yes, there were some cliches, yet I still found the characters gained more depth.
- Easy and enjoyable writing style: similar to some of Colfer’s past work Struck by Lightning, his writing comes across humorous yet lighthearted, making for a rather easy read. The honest style he puts across when creating his characters makes them seem more real and easy to understand. It is this style of writing that makes the young characters seem easy to relate to, even as someone much older than they are, without it coming across childish.
Why not 5*?
For me, it just missed the mark based on the maturity level of the book. Yes, its a young adult book, and yes the story is inherintly a fairytale. However, there were times when it felt a little too easy to read. A lot of the plot was predictable and didn’t really offer anything new outside of the original premises.
Ignoring the slightly childish premis and predictable plot, I still enjoyed this book. I’ve always been a fan of fairytales and seeing different ways in which well-known characters are given new lives or excelled in ways we’ve not seen before. It’ll be a little harder to recommend to other people based on the age of the readership it is intended for, but I’m still able to enjoy it more than I did when I first bought it.