BOOK 1: The Phantom of Faerie Mountain
Title: The Phantom of Faerie Mountain
Author: E M Mcintyre
Star Rating: 3.5 Stars
Number of Readers: 15
Writing Style: 8/10
Of the 15 readers:
13 would read another book by this author.
6 thought the cover was good or excellent.
15 felt it was easy to follow.
13 would recommend this story to another reader to try.
10 felt the author’s strongest skill was ‘plotting a story’.
5 felt the author’s strongest skill was ‘developing the characters’.
15 felt the pacing was good or excellent.
13 thought the author understood the readership and what they wanted.Readers’ Comments
‘For me the title killed it a little. I’m a young adult and I don’t read books with ‘fairy’ in the title. It’s so off-putting. Sort of Enid Blyton which is for 8 – 10 year olds. But I read I anyway and loved it. Really exciting from the very first page.’ Boy, aged 14
‘A super brave hero and a well-plotted fantasy adventure. I enjoyed this very much.’ Girl, aged 15
‘The title was not so good and the cover’s too busy. But the story is excellent. I liked the time travelling element. The author is excellent at describing characters and setting. Really pacey too.’ Boy, aged 15
‘The Scottish legends were really interesting.’ Girl, aged 14
‘This is a wonderful magical adventure. The hero, Abby, is tough and sort of cool. I would very much like to be like her. I particularly liked her inquisitive mind and how she keeps going to solve the mystery and overcome the dilemmas facing her. I will try to read the next in the set.’ Girl, aged 15
To Sum It Up:
‘A thoroughly enjoyable fantasy adventure. A Red Ribbon winner and highly recommended.’ The Wishing Shelf Book Awards
BOOK 2: The Secret of Berry Brae Circle
Title: The Secret of Berry Brae Circle (The Red King Trilogy Book 2)
Author: E M McIntyreStar Rating: 5 Stars
Number of Readers: 25
Writing Style: 10/10
Of the 25 readers:
25 would read another book by this author.
19 thought the cover was good or excellent.
24 felt it was easy to follow.
25 would recommend this story to another reader to try.
12 felt the author’s strongest skill was ‘plotting a story’.
13 felt the author’s strongest skill was ‘developing the characters’.
24 felt the pacing was good or excellent.
25 thought the author understood the readership and what they wanted.
‘I liked the character Abby. She’s strong and decisive, but also very human. She’s not perfect so she’s interesting. This is a cool story with a lot happening. I am now going to go back and read the first book.’ Boy, aged 14
‘Packed full of adventure and fantasy. Pacey story.’ Girl, aged 15
‘Started reading it. Stopped. Went back and read book 1. Loved it. Then re-started book 2. Loved it even more. The writing style is so good, so confident. This is a page turner.’ Girl, aged 14
‘Characters develop really well, particularly Abby. I liked the dog too! The cover was a little poor; not the picture but the font for the title. It looked sort of amateurish. Exciting plot, perfect for a Harry Potter fan.’ Girl, aged 15
‘The romance was good. I think this should be developed.’ Girl, aged 15
‘I love time travel books, so this was for me!’ Boy, aged 13
To Sum It Up:
‘A fast-paced, thrill-a-minute fantasy adventure. A FINALIST and highly recommended.’ The Wishing Shelf Book Awards
The Secret of Berry Brae Circle follows the adventures of Abby, Rory, the enchanted companion Finlay, and the rest of Abby’s family as she embarks on the next part of her journey, searching for her father and a special book that holds secrets to her future. There’s plenty of twists and turns, action, magic and suspense, but there’s also the friendships/relationships that make this a heartwarming and fun read. The characters are as strong in the first book and the plot even more complex, building on the previous book.
Abby and Rory are loveable and endearing and their innocent budding romance one that is appropriate for the age range (14-16). It’s a side story to the main plot and the adventures that bring the pair closer together. The fantasy is fun and descriptive and the book moves along at a consistent pace. Well written and sure to keep young readers riveted, I highly recommend the author and her style. Fun for all ages!
Word Building: 5/5
Story Flow: 5/5
BOOK 3: The Talisman of Darktree Hollow
I received a free copy of this book and after reading it, bought the book and opted to post a review.
The trio of Abby, Rory, and Finlay continue to evolve in this book, and we find out even more about the part each one has to play in the renewal of the Shay. Their roles are connected to how they are evolving as characters so, if you read the book and don’t see the connections, read it again because you’ll be sorry if you don’t. This aspect of the plot kept me riveted as I tried to figure out which direction the characters would take. We’re also introduced to several other interesting supporting characters who are part of the Shay and they are just as interesting as the main characters.
I enjoyed the adventure aspect of the plot because McIntyre is a great world-builder. As the trio journeyed to complete their quests, they traveled through complex landscapes filled with flora and fauna for the characters to interact with. Don’t expect pages upon pages of elaborately detailed descriptions of the world that abruptly pause the story; McIntyre masterfully inserts these wonderful details as the characters interact with the world.
Death and sacrifice were discussed in the book, and I thought how McIntyre discussed them was appropriate for her younger audience. I also liked the overarching discussion about the symbiotic relationship between humans and our environment because it was an integral part of the characters and the storyline.
I am sorry to see that this is the final installment of “The Red King,” but the ending was a natural part of the storyline progression. I am happy to recommend this and the rest of the series to both young adults and older readers alike. I hope that McIntyre continues to write as I am anxious to see more from her in the future.