Sunday, June 8, 2014

Orion Poe and the Lost Explorer -- Review and Giveaway

Thought for the Day: 

"All writing problems are psychological problems. Blocks usually stem from the fear of being judged. If you imagine the world listening, you'll never write a line. That's why privacy is so important. You should write first drafts as if they will never be shown to anyone." 

~ Erica Jong ~  

Gifts for My Writer Friends:
Having a little case of writer’s block? Check out 10 Amazing Simple Tips to Get You Back on the Writing Track HERE.

Are your characters in love? Make sure you show that. The Editor’s Blog HERE has a great post on just that topic.

Click HERE to read an absolutely brilliant post on what it is to be an artist. 

That last one is special to this family. We have our share of artists and a new one starting on that road. Our 8-year-old granddaughter, Gracie, was just accepted to a fine- and performing-arts charter school. It's the perfect place for her to hone her crafts (she has many talents). Her older brother, 12-year-old Gehrig (note the name!) played his last ever Little League game. The coach asked the kids who are aging out what they'd like in their last game. Gehrig said he wanted to play every position. No easy task during a mere six innings, but the coach moved him around, and Gehrig, indeed, spent some time in every position. While he was pitching, he struck out three in a row looking. During his five at-bats, he spent one batting left-handed (and hit into a double play), but then in the other four at-bats, he hit for the cycle! It was a memorable game.

Okay, enough bragging. On to business. Last week, I offered one of my lucky readers copies of Under the Egg and Between the Scenes. Our winner this week is Nancy! WooHoo, Nancy! I will get the books out to you this week. For the rest of you, I have another great giveaway this week, so please keep reading.

I was contacted a while ago by William Fourth (or William Summerhouse, as he is listed on Amazon) who asked if I might be interested in reviewing his book Orion Poe and the Lost Explorer. The book sounded fun, so I agreed. I'm glad I did. It really is a fun book. Heck, even the dedication is fun. "In memory of my grampa, Patrick, who took me hunting in the woods of Maine when I was just three years old, and let me drive his pickup truck across a bridge." You can tell from this you are in for a romp.

Orion Poe, eleven, lives with his grandfather along the coast of Maine where they run a lighthouse. During a terrible storm in a flash of lightning, Orion sees a boat with a man in it headed straight for the rocks below. His grandfather won't wake up, so Orion runs to the beach by himself. He finds an injured man and drags him up to the house. Though badly injured, he insisted on finding a knapsack he'd brought. When a tall, white sailing ship shows up a few days later, the men on the ship kill the injured guest to try to get their hands on the knapsack. These acts start Orion on a journey to the top of the world in order to solve the mystery of the man and what he has in his knapsack.

This is a fun and exciting adventure kids (and adults) will really enjoy. Orion is a smart, clever, and imaginative character and tells a great story in this first-person point of view book. At first I was reminded of Treasure Island, one of my favorite kids books. There were parts that reminded me of Oliver Twist (the Flimps) and  even Gulliver's Travels (there is a bit of fantasy). Clearly William Fourth is a big reader as well as an excellent writer. This is a real page turner and well worth your time. It would also be a great gift for any young people in your lives. 

I have a signed copy of Orion Poe and the Lost Explorer for one of you. If you have a US address and are a follower or subscriber (please tell me in your comment), leave a comment and your name will go into a drawing to be announced the next time I post. If you share the link on your blog, through Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media, let me know and I will put your name in an extra time for doing so. If you are not yet a subscriber or follower, it's free and easy. Check the top of the right hand column to sign up. 

Don't forget to check out other Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday book reviews through Shannon Messenger's wonderful blog. You will find it by clicking HERE.