Book Review: The Journal of Curious Letters (The 13th Reality # 1)

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Tick is an ordinary boy, and even though he has some insecurities and has to deal with bullies, he has the support of a good family. His life changes dramatically one day when he receives a mysterious letter in the mail. The letter contains a plea for help, a warning of danger if he accepts, and a way to escape danger if he chooses not to get involved, simply burn the letter. From this point on, Tick encounters many perils, but he steadfastly refuses to give up. More letters follow, each one containing a puzzle or riddle that must be solved before he is deemed worthy to join the real fight.

Dashner does an excellent job of depicting a typical, modern household, complete with annoying little sister, and integrating very strange and unusual characters and almost magical technology. The otherworldly heroes and villains are not your stereotypical good guys and bad guys either. Dashner reveals his incredible creativity in this book. He also breaks the mold in many ways. For example, instead of being an orphan or having horrible parents that he escapes, Tick has a wonderful, supportive mother and father, and one of the decisions he has to make is whether or not to tell his parents what’s going on.

Dashner also includes many puzzles and riddles that the readers can solve on their own. This really makes you feel like part of the story. It can also make you feel very smart if you end up solving the riddle before the hero.

I thought this was an excellent book, and I’m glad to see that it’s only the first in a series.

Little Skulls

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Who could imagine that underneath the beautiful Snapdragon flower lurked such a macabre sight. These little skulls are the seedpods of the Snapdragon. They contain the flower seeds and are, apparently, rather difficult to break open, like real skulls would be I’d guess.

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Snapdragons are so named because they are said to look like dragon faces, and, after all, every face needs a skull.

FREE Today Only!!!

Book 1 good copy

The Search for the Lost Laboratory is downloadable for free today, January 10, 2015, on Amazon.com.

If you’re not sure if this would be something you’d like, read the short summary below:

For many generations, dangerous secrets have lain hidden in a cavern laboratory deep below the surface of a small island in the Pacific Ocean. Despite many efforts to find and claim the incredible powers within, none, so far, have succeeded, and the story of the lost laboratory faded into legend…until now. A dark enemy has arrived on the island seeking the extraordinary power that waits to be found in the professor’s scientific creations – a great, unfathomable, almost magical power. It’s up to Jake, his sister Molly and their new friends to hold back the evil that threatens to rise.

With the help of the professor’s ancient journal, the group begins their quest. If they are to find the laboratory first, they must solve numerous puzzles, overcome countless obstacles, and survive perilous traps set by both the professor and their new enemy.

Little do they know that their greatest and most dangerous challenge will come after they find what they seek. It’s then that they must make a terrible decision: turn their backs on the world and let evil win, or risk losing everything they know and love, everything they are, by using the powers in the cavern themselves.

Reviews and/or ratings will be greatly appreciated. You can review/rate it here, Amazon.com, and/or here, Goodreads.com.

The Sarcastic Fringehead

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The Sarcastic Fringehead doesn’t let its small size deter it from aggressively lying in wait to attack anyone foolish enough to get too close to its home. Living in shells, crevices or the stray tin can or boot that finds its way down to the ocean floor, the Sarcastic Fringehead is very territorial and ferocious. If another fish, or even a human diver, comes within attacking distance, this vicious fish will spring, opening its mouth to its fullest size and baring its razor-sharp teeth. If this ever happens to you, it’s best to retreat quickly trying to outswim the angry little fish who will most likely chase after you.

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These fish are usually around 6 to 8 inches, but they can grow up to a foot long, and they live mostly off the Pacific coast of North America. They’re more scientifically known as Neoclinus Blanchardi, but perhaps the more common name suits them better.

Watch the video below to see two Sarcastic Fringeheads going at it. Notice how they attack each other with their mouths. This way, they can determine who is bigger, and as a result, who wins the fight.

The Search for the Lost Laboratory

Book 1 good copy

For many generations, dangerous secrets have lain hidden in a cavern laboratory deep below the surface of a small island in the Pacific Ocean. Despite many efforts to find and claim the incredible powers within, none, so far, have succeeded, and the story of the lost laboratory faded into legend….. until now. A dark enemy has arrived on the island seeking the extraordinary power that waits to be found in the professor’s scientific creations – a great, unfathomable, almost magical power. It’s up to Jake, his sister Molly and their new friends to hold back the evil that threatens to rise.

Check it out on Amazon.

Book Review – Leven Thumps and the Gateway to Foo

The dream world of Foo is threatened by the dark Sabine and his shadowy minions. Leven, with the help of Winter, who can turn things to ice just by thinking it; Clover, his adorable and fiercely-loyal, cat-like little sycophant; and Geth, the powerful and rightful ruler of Foo, who just happens to be a talking toothpick through most of the book, set out to save Foo by destroying the gateway between that land of dreams and reality.

Skye does an incredible job of bringing his new, imaginative world to life. His main characters, the world they are trying to reach, and even the candy they eat come from a wildly creative mind. The only downside I found to the book was that it spends a little too much time dwelling on Leven’s fear, other than that, it’s a great read. I’d recommend it, if for nothing else, then for the crazy antics of the lovable Clover, unquestionably, my favorite character.

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