Review: The Thunderbolt Pony

cover-thunderbolt ponyTitle: The Thunderbolt Pony
Author: Stacy Gregg
Series: – –
Genre: Children’s Fiction
Age Range: 9+
Available: 5th Oct

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A dramatic and emotional story about one girl’s determination to stand by her beloved animals – and her refusal to give up, even in the face of impossible odds.

When a devastating earthquake hits Evie’s hometown of Parnassus on New Zealand’s South Island, she and the rest of the town are forced to evacuate. Evie’s injured mum is one of the first to be rescued by helicopter and Evie will be next. But when realises that she will be forced to leave her beloved pony, Gus, her dog, Jock, and her cat Moxy behind, she is determined to find another way. Before the rescue helicopter returns, Evie flees with Gus, Jock and Moxy in a race against time across difficult terrain to reach the port of Kaikoura, where she has heard that people will be evacuated by ship in three days’ time. Surely there will be space for her, Gus, Jock and Moxy there?

But the journey is harder than Evie could ever have imagined, and with aftershocks constantly shaking, Evie will have to draw on all her bravery, strength, and resilience to bring her and her animals to safety . . . and hope that they reach the boat in time.


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Review: Shadowblack

cover-shadowblackTitle: Shadowblack
Author: Sebastien de Castell
Series: Spellslinger #2
Genre: YA Fantasy
Length: Novel
Available: 5th Oct

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The second book in the page-turning SPELLSLINGER series for all teen, YA, adult and fantasy readers. 

It’s a few months since Kellen left his people behind. Now aged sixteen, Kellen is an outlaw, relying on his wits to keep him alive in the land of the Seven Sands. He misses home, he misses family and more than anything, he misses Nephenia, the girl he left behind. 

Then he meets Seneira, a blindfolded girl who isn’t blind, and who carries a secret that’s all too familiar to Kellen. Kellen and Ferius resolve to help – but the stakes are far higher than they realise. A Shadowblack plague is taking hold – and Kellen can’t help but suspect his own people may even be behind it. 

Perfect for fans of The Dark Tower, Firefly, The Hunger Games and Guardians of the Galaxy.


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Review: The Wizards of Once

cover-wizards of once.jpgTitle: The Wizards of Once
Author: Cressida Cowell
Series: Wizards of Once #1
Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy
Age Range: 9+
Available: Sept 19th

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From the bestselling author of How to Train Your Dragon comes an exciting high-adventure series – set in an ancient, magical time, full of Wizards, Warriors, Giants and Sprites.

This is the story of a young boy Wizard and a young girl Warrior who have been taught to hate each other like poison; and the thrilling tale of what happens when their two worlds collide.

Perfect for boys and girls who love fantasy adventure …

Once there was Magic, and the Magic lived in the dark forests.

Wizard boy, Xar, should have come in to his magic by now, but he hasn’t, so he wants to find a witch and steal its magic for himself. But if he’s got any chance of finding one, he will have to travel into the forbidden Badwoods.

Xar doesn’t realise he is about to capture an entirely different kind of enemy. A Warrior girl called Wish.

And inside this book, at this very moment, two worlds collide and the fate of the land is changed forever.

In a whirlwind adventure, Xar and Wish must visit the dungeons at Warrior fort, and face the evil Queen.

But something that has been sleeping for hundreds of years is stirring …


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Review: Sky

cover-skyTitle: Sky
Author: Sarah Driver
Series: The Huntress #2
Genre: MG Fantasy
Age Range: 9+
Available: Now

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The second book in a stunning new fantasy adventure trilogy, perfect for readers aged 9+ and fans of Philip Pullman, Piers Torday, Abi Elphinstone, Katherine Rundell and Frances Hardinge.

Seek the scattered Storm-Opals of Sea, Sky and Land, before an enemy finds them and uses them to wield dark power . . .

The trail of the Storm-Opals takes Mouse further than she has ever been before. With her little brother Sparrow and friend Crow alongside her, she stumbles into the world of Sky, where fortresses are hidden amongst the clouds, secret libraries (skybraries) nestle atop gigantic icebergs and the sky swirls with warring tribes and their ferocious flying beasts. Can they solve Da’s message before it’s too late for their ship, their tribe and the whole of Trianukka?

Sky-soaring, beast-chattering, dream-dancing, draggle-riding, terrodyl-flying, world-saving adventure.


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Review: Coyote Summer

cover-coyote summerTitle: Coyote Summer
Author: Mimi Thebo
Series: – –
Genre: Middle Grade Fiction
Age Range: 11+
Available: Now

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Sometimes I get that feeling like everyone can see right through me. Like all my secrets and thoughts and things I don’t want anyone to see are hanging all over me. 

My mum has exiled me; sent me halfway across the world to live with her sister in Kansas. Have you ever been to Kansas? The emptiness is overwhelming. 

Everyone thinks I’m a failure. But then he sees me. The coyote, eyes golden and wild. And I guess it’s because someone’s watching me, but I start to dance. 

With hauntingly-beautiful writing from Mimi Thebo, author of Dreaming the Bear, Coyote Summer will stay with you long after you put the book down.


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Review: School for Skylarks

cover-school for skylarksTitle: School for Skylarks
Author: Sam Angus
Series: – –
Genre: Children’s Fiction
Age Range: 9+
Available: 27th July

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It is 1939. When Lyla is evacuated from her home in London to her Great-Aunt’s enormous house in the West Country, she expects to be lonely. She has never been to school nor had any friends, and her parents have been at the centre of a scandal. But with the house being used to accommodate an entire school of evacuated schoolgirls, there’s no time to think about her old life.

Soon there is a horse in a first-floor bedroom and a ferret in Lyla’s sock drawer, hordes of schoolgirls have overrun the house, and Lyla finds out that friends come in all shapes and sizes.


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Review: Wish Trap

cover-wish trapTitle: Wish Trap
Author: Linda Chapman
Illustrator: Lucy Fleming
Series: Star Friends #2
Age Range: 7+
Available: Now

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Do you believe in magic? 

Ionie and her friends do! When they meet the Star Animals, a whole world of adventure unfolds. Ionie and her star animal, a wildcat called Sorrel, must use their special powers to stop the forces of dark magic.

When a young girl, Paige, wishes she could be on the gym team, she doesn’t realise that a Wish Shade hiding in her garden will make it come true – in the worst way imaginable. Can the Star Friends stop the girls from getting hurt and send the Wish Shade back to where it came from?

Perfect for fans of My Secret Unicorn and The Rescue Princesses, and for Rainbow Magic readers looking to move on to a more challenging adventure.


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