Monday, March 19, 2012

BEYONDERS ~ Middle Grade New Release!!!

It's funny how I feel, finding an unexpected ARC in the mail. I morph into the six year old, who races for the presents under the tree on Christmas morning. As with presents, some ARCs elate me more than others, which is simply a reflection of my personal taste not of the author, book, or publishing house.


I must tell you that there was no doubt of my excitement upon receiving the middle grade book I have to share with you today. My shriek echoed through my neighborhood.


Title: BEYONDERS - Seeds of Rebellion
Author: Brandon Mull
Genre: Fantasy, Adventure; Middle Grade
Publisher: Aladdin
Release Date: March 20, 2012 - TOMORROW!!
Pages: 528


I would like to thank the publisher for supplying me with this ARC for review.


Favorite Passage/Line: A persistent breeze shredded the fog into tattered wisps of vapor. Starlight began to penetrate the murky sky as Aram and Jason journeyed south. Their flight took them across desolate terrain, following overgrown trails through woods and improvising paths over fields and low hills.


Description: After the cliffhanger ending of A World Without Heroes, Jason is back in the world he’s always known—yet for all his efforts to get home, he finds himself itching to return to Lyrian. Jason knows that the shocking truth he learned from Maldor is precious information that all of his friends in Lyrian, including Rachel, need if they have any hope of surviving and defeating the evil emperor.
Meanwhile, Rachel and the others have discovered new enemies—as well as new abilities that could turn the tide of the entire quest. And as soon as Jason succeeds in crossing over to Lyrian, he’s in more danger than ever. Once the group reunites, they strive to convince their most-needed ally to join the war and form a rebellion strong enough to triumph over Maldor. At the center of it all, Jason and Rachel realize what roles they’re meant to play—and the answers are as surprising as they are gripping. 
COVETED! MUST READ!!
My Splats: Adventure, intrigue, muscle, and poetically-threaded language carry this tale from great to extraordinary

The mere premise of a Beyonder draws interest. Enchantment abounds when average characters are called from their world to another. Couple that with a marvelously created world brimming with pitfalls, turmoil, fantastic characters, and some of the most intricately created creatures, and you have a winner.  

In Seed of Rebellion, book II in the Beyonder series, the reader finds Jason desperate to deliver important information he learned at the end of book II. Plus, he longs to find Rachel, the other Beyonder who was inadvertently left behind when he was sent home. 


Vivid imagery and concepts set this story apart, yet begin with familiar elements such as a living hand that uses sign language and a human-swallowing hippo that acts as a portal to Lyrian. Both work to connect this sequel to its beginnings. But the  subtle ingredient of a shadowy figure appearing and following Jason is what set this story into action--action that continues until the last word.

Although a new barrier blocks Jason's path at every turn, he does eventually locate Rachel and delivers his message, only to discover the evil Maldor has advanced in his quest to control Lyrian. Jason and Rachel join forces with old acquaintances and even a few enemies as they seek answers to defeating Maldor. But finding allies becomes trickier, as the hidden character of some and the underlying nature of this world slowly unravels. The intricate relationships and characteristics between some of the characters makes a great platform for the reader to see uniqueness in people and how to accept, or in a few cases, deal with others' differences. 


Along the way, Jason and Rachel are confronted with even more disturbing secrets about this strange world, which brings them front and center with fantastical creatures, even the walking dead. Here, their true roles in this world are exposed and each must decide whether to accept them or not. And when their only way to forge a true rebellion and preserve their freedom is to prove success against Maldor is even a possibility, they must seek the wisdom of an Oracle. 


As in every dangerous adventure, the wisdom they seek is more complicated than they'd expected, which might lead to a solution or to more trouble. Readers will have to stay tuned to discover that answer in book III.


I would definitely recommend this book (and the series) to middle graders who love to read, and any young adult or adult. NOTE: my recommendation for the middle grade age is a must, but I would simply caution those whose reading ability is limited. Although I absolutely love the poetic language, some younger children might find it difficult to comprehend. Making this a read-aloud as a group would be a fantastic idea.


For more Middle Grade features today, check out Shannon Whitney Messenger's list:
- The Mundie Moms. Click HERE.  
- Shannon O'Donnell. Click HERE
- Brennan and Meyrick Murphy. Click HERE.     
-  Karen Yingling. Click HERE.
- Gina Carey. Click HERE.
- Barbara Watson. Click HERE.  
- Andrea Mack. Click HERE.   
- Michelle Isenhoff. Click HERE. 
- Gabrielle Prendergast. Click HERE
- Charlotte Taylor. Click HERE
- Deb Marshall. Click HERE.
- Kim Aippersbach. Click HERE.  
- Michael Gettel Gilmarten. Click HERE to enter 
- C.S. Einfeld. Click HERE.  



20 comments:

  1. Awesome review. I won an ARC of this and can't wait to read it. But I need to read book 1 first. I'm excited. I just found out Brandon Mull is going to be in Ann Arbor the end of the month.

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  2. My daughter loves Brandon Mull's books (she devoured the Fablehaven series), but I have yet to read any! Your enthusiasm is catchy for this one.

    (And it turns out...I'm highlighting a different book next week (as in, not this one) but when you mentioned its release date on FB as March 20, I wondered if it was the same one!)

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    1. Ooh, I'll have to stop by and see which story it is!!

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  3. A human-swallowing hippo! Okay, this is jumping up the TBR pile!!

    Thanks for the great review, Sheri. Glad to see you on MMGM!!

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  4. Sounds awesome. I was thinking the same thing as your "NOTE" and 500 plus pages would deter my reluctant reader.

    Thanks

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  5. Wow! I probably would've passed this one right by, but I'll definitely add it to my TBR pile since you love it so much! Well, the first one, I mean! We love reading aloud at bedtime, so this might be up next on the hit parade. Thanks, Sheri! :o) <3

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  6. This has been on my TBR list for awhile. Not sure I have a good reason for not diving in. Your review definitely spurred my interest again. Thanks for the great review!

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  7. yay for tomorrow! i LOVE that cover-sigh. Love it!

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  8. Sweet! Brandon is one of our favorite author here at home. My kids love Fablehaven. They are ready to start Beyonders soon. I'm so glad to hear such positive reviews about it!

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  9. Hmm.. I wonder if my son knows about this series. Thanks for the tip!

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  10. I was thrilled when I unexpectedly received a copy through the mail! Haven't had a chance to read it yet but this just brought it to the top of my tbr list!

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  11. hi miss shari! wow! cool review. for sure that books going on my wanna read list.
    ...hugs from lenny

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  12. Going to check out all of these reads. Thank you so much for sharing!

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  13. Very cool review, but I always expect that here. Thanks for this one.

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  14. What an intriguing review! Have to make sure this is on my TBR list.

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  15. I've yet to get either of my sons into his books. :(

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  16. When the first Beyonders book came out, the premise was so much like the MG story I'd just finished writing that I got terribly depressed. I could never bring myself to read it... even the way you describe the second one makes my belly churn a bit...lol. It's just too darn similar, which is pure coincidence... but it just leaves me feeling blue. :( Oh well. Either way, I love your fervor for this series and can see why it's so appealing. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!! :)

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  17. I was so excited to get this ARC, too! I haven't read it yet because my 12yo took off with it immediately and hasn't given it back! But I know I'm gonna love it, too :)

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