The Journey Continues…

If you are returning back to read my blog post again you may remember the review I did a while back about the book The Alchemyst. If you have not already, I suggest checking out my previous review so you can better understand this current one. Well I am here today to bring you yet another great book from the great series of novels The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel. The name of this amazing novel is The Magician by Michael Scott. The sorceress is the second book in a six book series called, The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel. This book picks up right where the last book left at an exhilarating rate. Josh and Sophie Newman are now in Paris, and now must face Niccoló Machiavelli, and his accomplice Dr. John Dee. In this short amount of time Sophie must start to understand the element she has recently gained control off. The element of wind. It may not seem all that strong but in the hands of the right user, it can be the most powerful of all the elements. As the race for the codex commences throughout all of Paris Josh Newman is captured by the evil but, cunning master Dr. John Dee. Dee convinces Josh to follow him with the hope of finding an elder to awaken Josh’s powers. I will the leave the rest of this amazing novel for you to read. I would rate this book a solid 7 out of ten. I do not think this book is as good as the previous novel in the series because it seems as though Michael Scott was trying to cram so much into as little pages as possible. The main reason why I think this novel was not as great as any of the others in the series is because the plot is not as well put together as some of the others. In some parts of the book you are just sitting there waiting for nothing to happen. All in all this is still a good book and I highly recommend reading it. -Zach

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The Adventure of a Lifetime

As a kid you could never get me to read a book even if you forced me to. I was like this until the age of ten. I had to read a book for my fourth grade class. It could be any book we wanted at all. I decided to pick up the book A Ship of Magic by Robin Hobb. This was the first time I ever experienced the love of books and the world of imagination it brings you to. The story starts off with a ship named “Vivacia” and we learn that it is a liveship. A liveship is a boat that is made out of wizardwood but, the special thing about these ships are when three owners, from separate generations of the same family, die upon the deck of the ship, the ships will come alive. They retain all memories and experiences of those who lived and died aboard them. The Vestrits area  family who gained wealth through trading and developing monopolies on goods. This family owns the liveship “Vivacia” and we learn that so far two of the three required deaths have already been fulfilled. When Kefferia’s father dies and makes the necessary third death to quicken the Vivacia into a liveship with all the memories of the previous captains. As he is dying he turns over the ownership of the ship to Kefferia and her new husband Kyle. Kyle being the power hungry character he is banishes Keffaria from her beloved liveship. I will leave the rest of the book for you to read. I would rate this book an easy 9/10. Robin Hobb has such a creative mind and it is incredible to read about all the fantasy worlds and different places she makes using her imagination. She comes up with these crazy ideas that you would never even think of. I cannot even begin to comprehend how one person can have all these great ideas. -Zach

An Unexpected Journey

Today the book I will be reviewing is a book that tells us the story of one of the world’s greatest myths of all time. This book is The Alchemyst by Michael Scott. The alchemist is the first book in a six book series called, The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel. Magic is one of the biggest subjects of intrigue in the world of fantasy fiction. I can say with utmost conviction that the magic in The Alchemyst does not disappoint in any way. This novel starts off with a man named Nicholas Flamel. We learn that this man is nearly seven-hundred years old because he is in possession of the most powerful book that has ever existed. The book of Abraham the Mage. This book not only holds the secret to eternal life, but many other secrets best left untold. In the hands of certain people it even contains the power to destroy the world. Dr. John Dee plans to steal the book and do just that. We now learn of the two main protagonists Josh and Sophie Newman. Josh and Sophie are about to partake in one of the most elaborate and unexpected journey we have ever seen. These siblings are said to be the fated siblings of prophecy. The siblings of silver and gold. The prophecies say that the siblings have the power to both save and destroy the world. This book has so many great aspects integrated into the extraordinary plot. But personally I believe the finest attribute is all the characters that the book features are based upon real-life historical characters such as Shakespeare. The descriptions and though that the author puts into these characters still seems to amaze me. There is not a single aspect he seems to leave out. He features characters from all different aspects of culture, from Egyptian gods all the way to the legend of the great sword Excalibur.  Michael Scott uses the knowledge of common myths and stories to make up a novel like no other. I recommend this book to anyone looking to read a well written and intriguing fantasy novel. On this final thought, I will now leave you. -Zach

An Unfortunate Journey

Recently I made the decision to re-read a series I have always loved ever since I was a little kid. The book is the first in a thirteen book long series. The series is known as A series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket. This series is focused more towards the younger audiences and may seem childish at times but, if you begin to start looking closer into the books you will find them not as childish as you once thought.  The first book in this wonderful series is The Bad Beginning. It starts out with three siblings that are just about to hear the most devastating news. They learn that their parents died in a fire that destroyed all that they owned. This is the beginning of their journey of unfortunate events. A banker takes custody of them until he can find a relative to give them to. A mysterious man posing as their uncle comes to pick them up from the Banker. This fake uncle of theirs goes by the name of Count Olaf. The only reason why Olaf wants to take in these sad orphaned children is because he is after their family’s vast inheritance. Once the children move in with Olaf he begins to treat them terribly, making them cook, clean the house. The house Olaf is currently living in is completely trashed. He seeks to accomplish his evil plan by marrying himself to one of the orphans. I will stop right here and leave the rest for you to read on your own. Lemony Snicket has one of the most unique writing styles I have ever read. Not only is his writing style incredibly unique, he also finds way to incorporate foreshadowing and unsolvable mysteries into his writing. The book itself is not the best out of the series but, it is necessary if you want to read one of the greatest series to ever have been written. Not to mention Netflix is coming out with a t.v series based of these books, so make sure you go out and read this series. -Zach

A Path of Fire

Lately I have been told of this great fantasy book with magic, dragons, and the beautiful elves. It is the book Eragon by Christopher Paolini. This story begins as most do, with an unimpressive protagonist. The protagonist in this case is a farm boy named Eragon. As Eragon is hunting in the woods nearby his family’s farm he finds a strange blue stone, which he has never seen anything like it before. As the story progresses we learn that this rock is not actually a rock, but an egg of the most fearsome creatures known to man. Dragons. When the dragon finally hatches it makes a sort of bond with Eragon by touching his hand. Eragon trains and nurtures this dragon of his, until it is strong enough to get by on its own. Later we learn that mysterious people want to do harm to Eragon because he has this dragon. These men do just that. These mysterious people kill his uncle and burn down his entire farm because Eragon fled to protect his dragon. I must stop myself here because I fear that I may reveal too much of this novel to you. Books of dragons and magic have always been an interesting topic to read about, because they are usually unique and different. This is not the case here. Paolini follows the same footsteps in his story as many other fantasy authors do. It just seems too repetitive. Most of the book is following the basic fantasy plot, where you have a hero who goes on a long perilous quest for revenge. I would rate this book a measly 6/10. The only reason why I rated it this highly is, while it may be so much alike other fantasy novels, it still has a good plot and is packed with intense action packed moments. While this book may not be for me, I would still recommend it to anyone looking for a good fantasy novel. On this final note, I will be leaving you.-Zach

A magical Adventure

Today I want to bring to you one of the greatest experiences known to modern day literature. You may ask yourself, “What might that be?” It is one of the greatest books written, read by both children and adults, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K Rowling. Originally I was very lenient on reading this book since it was labeled as a child’s book, but I can firmly say that this is not the case. Personally I would rate this book a solid 8/10. It all begins with an Englishman Mr. Dursley. This particular Englishman begins to notice a few strange things happening on his way to work that day. The book shifts to later that night where a wizard named Dumbledore explains that a particular child’s parents where killed by an evil wizard. When he returns to his house later that night, Mr. Dursley finds a small child in a basket, with a note explaining the events that led up to him needing to take care of the child. Ten years pass by and we learn of the horrors this adopted child goes through. This child we learn is named Harry Potter. Harry lives a terrible and sad life, but little does he know, that is all going to change— that very night.  Because he was no ordinary boy. Harry was a wizard. Mr. Dursley starts to panic after seeing both the magical things Harry has unknowingly been doing and the invitations from the magical school Hogwarts.  In his state of panic Mr. Dursley leads Harry and the rest of his family off to a secluded island away from their house. As they are sleeping they hear a loud bang on the door. The door opens slowly. They see a dark bulky giant walk into the room, which promptly walks up and hands Harry his invitation to Hogwarts. I will now leave you with a sense of mystery so that you are intrigued enough to go out and buy this book. This is not the only book in the series. It is actually the first in a seven book series. So without further ado goodbye. – Zach

The Final Empire

Everyone is always telling me how reading is a great thing and how it improves my vocabulary and makes me wrong. Don’t get me wrong, I love books but, everyone just has the wrong ideas about them. The true reason why we read is not to get smarter or improve our vocabulary. The true reason why we read is because we truly enjoy it. We read because we love to go on adventures we couldn’t think possible without the use of books. One of my favorite authors, George R.R. Martin, says, “A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies, said Jojen. The man who never reads lives only one.”

Today I want to bring you one of the most unique fantasy novels to ever have been written. This novel is Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson. This is the first novel in a series of books. What makes this book so special is the world the story is taking place in. the world is so unique and different compared to the places we are used to. This world is plagued by “mists”. No one knows what they are and have started to regard them with a sort of awe or fear. The most interesting part about this world is the people. The people have a small chance of being an allomancer. An allomancer is able to “burn” certain types of metals and gain physical or mental properties based on the metals they burned. An allomancer is only ever able to burn one metal and they do not get to choose which one, they are just born with it. Sometimes a really unique allomancer comes along who is able to burn more than one metal. They are able to burn all the metals and are called misborn. Mistborn are very rare and are regarded with a sense of utmost fear because all the people of the land know what they can do. The way these people burn their metals are unique. They have to ingest the metal by swallowing it and from their they are able to “burn” their metal for their powers. I cannot even begin to explain how great this book is. I can barely touch the surface of it all. I highly suggest reading this amazing book. I would give it a solid 9/10.

A Not So Good Day, that Could Have Gone Better

It’s not everyday you consider a children’s book to be a beautifully crafted piece of literature. The book I am about to tell you about is one of my favorite books from when I was a child. I can not een remember the amounts of time I read this book. I think the main reason why I liked this novel so much was because i could identify with the main character of the story. This book is Alexander and the Terrible, horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst.

This novel is about a child named Alexander. Alexander is a kid who has one terrible day. Throughout the day he is plagued by various events that make his life seem like a living hell at the time but, are not actually all that bad. After many attempts to blame all that has happened to him on bad luck or just having a bad day and not to mention his many threats to move to Australia, “That magical land where nothing bad ever happens”, Alexander lays down onto his bed for the night, proclaiming that, “It has been a terrible… very bad day. My mom says some days are like that. Even in Australia.”

This children’s book may just seem that. A children’s book, but I can attest that it is way more than a child’s bedtime story. This book addresses some of the issues that we must face as we grow up. One main issue is our own incompetence and inability to take responsibility for our actions. Alexander is seen many times throughout the novel to be doing things that lead towards him having a bad day. Some of these are when he complains about how his teacher liked his friend’s picture of the sailboat better than Alexander’s picture of the invisible castle. If he really wanted his teacher’s recognition, he should actually just do some work. This is not the only time Alexander is caught being lazy and then blaming it on just having a bad day. Another event was when Alexander tripped on his skateboard in his room that he left out the previous night, or how he woke up with gum in his hair. Most if not all of the events that happened to Alexander could have been prevented if he were to just prepare ahead of time or do something.

I too was very much like Alexander as a child. I was never in the wrong and always believed that anything that happened to me was not my fault, but just divine intervention. I never attempted to change the way I lived my life, or the way I did things. I would just blame others, or blame it on having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. But when I began to notice that I kept making the same mistakes over and over again. I decided that Something would have to change, so I went out and corrected my mistakes. When I stopped blaming all these events on bad luck, I began to ask myself a question. What could I have done better, that would have prevented that event from going badly?

Lets be quite honest here, sometimes in life there are things that no matter what you do they will go wrong, just in spite of you. But most of the time that is not the case. There are problems that are going to pop up that you will just blame on bad luck or having a bad day. Do not keep making the same mistakes every day just because you are too stubborn to learn and do not want to admit your are wrong. So, for once in your life can you just admit to your own incompetence and try to learn something from it. Maybe we deserve the life we live.