Tag Archives: fantasy middle grade

Embracing the Magic: A Middle-Grade Magical Fantasy (Town Magician Book One) by S.A. Schneider Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

A young boy who dreams of becoming a powerful wizard must work with his bitter rival, a trickster who has convinced his town that he is a powerful magician himself when an evil wizard arrives to destroy their home and those they care about in author S.A. Schneider’s “Embracing the Magic”, the first in the Town Magician series.

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The Synopsis

Their hero is a fraud and only he knows it. When the truth comes knocking, can one boy conjure a way to save the day?

Young Samual longs to perform magic of his own. And what’s worse, he can’t seem to convince anyone that their beloved Town Magician is a trickster without an enchanted bone in his body. When a wicked wizard challenges the pretender to a duel, Samual vows keep his village safe by forcing the fraudster to rise to the challenge.

Determined to prevent disaster, he secretly shadows the phony protector during his training with the Grand Wizard. And when they barely escape an attack by dire wolves, Samual realizes he must partner up with his bitter rival. But keeping the truth hidden any longer may not help them outwit a powerful sorcerer.

With his town in grave danger, can Samual protect the ones he loves from the forces of evil?

Embracing the Magic is the enchanting first story in the Town Magician middle grade fantasy series. If you enjoy unlikely heroes, coming-of-age adventures, and spellbinding creatures, then you’ll love S.A. Schneider’s fantastical tale.

The Review

This was such a captivating and tantalizing read. The author did an incredible job of capturing a unique world filled with magic and wonder. The imagery and atmosphere did a beautiful job of bringing the action and adventure of the story to life on the page. The way the author is able to relate this story to younger readers and provide both study guides, terminology, and a reference guide on the world-building he did was great to see brought to life. 

For me though, the character growth and world-building/mythos the author creates in this story were the highlights of the narrative. The relationship between Rory and Samual was such a rollercoaster of highs and lows throughout the narrative, showing the bond they form and the motivations that take life as their journey continues. The concept of challenges between town magicians, a Town Magician Council, and so much more made this story feel so vibrant and alive on the page. 

The Verdict

With amazing world-building, rich atmosphere, and engaging storytelling, author S.A. Schneider’s “Embracing the Magic” is an incredible Middle-Grade Fantasy Adventure novel and the perfect first chapter in this emerging series. The emotional growth of the characters, the powerful villain they face, and the entertaining narrative will have young readers and others alike hanging off of the author’s every word. If you haven’t yet, be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Don’t you wish you could have a lightsaber? I imagine it all the time. And force powers – definitely force powers. Think of that? Oh, wait – how about spider powers? Shooting web lines and clinging to walls. You could get to school in style.

OK, so we can’t have those. At least to the best of my knowledge. What’s the next best thing? Reading stories about other worlds. I guess I’ll have to settle for that and hopefully you’d like to come along for the ride.

I live and grew up in a rural area in Ohio. That left a lot of room for reading. I now live with my family and create stories set in many other places.

For now, I have to visit another world.


Enjoy the adventure!

Mr. Moonbeam and the Halloween Crystal by Ryan Cowan Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

A young boy learning to hone his unique magical abilities must stop a powerful evil witch on Halloween Night before the human world is forever changed in author Ryan Cowan’s novel “Mr. Moonbeam and the Halloween Crystal.”

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The Synopsis

Elliott attends his third-grade class like any other boy, except that Elliott isn’t like any other boy. Endowed with magical powers, Elliott belongs to a secret world called Moonstone – and trouble is brewing. When the evil witch Noir steals The Halloween Crystal, it’s up to Elliott and his third-grade teacher, Mr. Moonbeam, to stop Noir from invading the non-magical world on Halloween night. But can Elliott learn to master his powers in time?

Moonbeam Children’s Book Award for Pre-Teen Fiction, Ebook (Bronze) 2019

The Review

A truly engaging and magical read, author Ryan Cowan has crafted a masterful tale of magic, mythology, and wonder in this brand new fantasy-driven children’s book. The story really shines through in this tale, giving readers new mythology between the world of magic and the world of humanity that brings all of the supernatural and magical creatures of lore into the forefront. 

Rather than having a human falling into the world of magic and crafting a tale of discovery, the author does a great job of exploring a cast of characters well versed in the world of magic. What really stood out however was the author’s ability to create a narrative that highlighted the in-class relationship between a teacher and a student as the teacher attempts to impart knowledge that will help the student grow into the roles they were meant to be in life. 

The Verdict

This was a fast-paced, easy to read tale of supernatural entities, a clash between evil witches and good witches, and the impact magic has on two worlds as a rising witch discovers his unique abilities while a seasoned witch must find a way to stop an impending apocalypse. If you haven’t yet, grab your copy of author Ryan Cowan’s “Mr. Moonbeam and the Halloween Crystal” today! 

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Ryan Cowan grew up in a small town called Middleport, Ohio. He currently lives in Hawthorne, CA. As a teacher with almost 20 years of experience, Ryan has taught all grades from K-6th. He currently works as an assistant principal for the Los Angeles Unified School District.

Mr. Moonbeam and the Halloween Crystal is his first children’s book. A magical story with complex themes, Mr. Moonbeam and the Halloween Crystal highlights the difficulties of teaching while also chronicling the important problem solving relationship between a teacher and his student. A sequel is currently in the works.

Ryan has degrees and/or credentials in education from the following universities: Marshall University (BFA Music Theory), UCLA (M.Ed. Urban Education), California State University Los Angeles (Multiple Subject Teaching Credential), and California State University Dominguez Hills (Administrative Services Credential).

’Til the Last Snowflake Falls (The Adventures of Fawn #1) by Al E. Boy Review

A young reindeer seeking a life of excitement and adventure finds more than she bargained for as her adventures soon become more dangerous than she could have ever known in author Al E. Boy’s novel “’Til the Last Snowflake Falls (The Adventures of Fawn #1)”. 

The Synopsis

“I want some fun and excitement! I don’t care how dangerous it is!” Even if your parents are legendary reindeer Comet and Vixen, life can still be pretty boring. Fawn is a precocious youngster who starts sneaking out of the stable every day looking for fun, excitement…and friends. She’ll find them all…but she’s also going to encounter more than her share of danger! 

The Review

The author does a fantastic job of creating a wholly unique and original Middle Grade Action/Adventure story that incorporates both new characters and classic fairy tale and holiday characters readers will know and love. The story focuses on the power of friendship, family and the pros and cons of seeking adventure and a life outside of the one you know. It also highlights the struggles of youth to connect with others and the natural rebellion many children face when they become their own person. 

A mixture of a middle grade action/adventure story that explores the innocence of youth and a rich setting filled with magic and wonder, this story does an excellent job of drawing the reader in and creating a story that both naturally feels like a holiday read and yet could be enjoyed any time of the year. 

The Verdict

A story of exciting adventures, shocking twists and turns and a magical ending that speaks to the nature of this wonderful tale, author Al E. Boy is a natural born storyteller who does a great job of creating fresh new takes on classic characters. With a whole new cast of characters for readers to fall in love with, this is a story you won’t want to miss, so be sure to grab your copy of ’Til the Last Snowflake Falls by Al E. Boy today!

Rating: 10/10

About the Author

Through almost 40 years as a Santa Claus, Al E. Boy developed quite a repertoire of tales to explain and answer the many questions children ask about Santa, the North Pole, his reindeer, and his friends, the elves.

It was this collection of tales which prompted him to begin writing The Adventures of Fawn. Through the young daughter of legendary reindeer Comet and Vixen, he’s been able to weave an exciting, colorful, imaginative world which will delight readers of all ages!

Mr. Boy not only hopes you enjoy these tales, but make reading them part of your Christmas traditions, as well.

Additional info: ‘Til the Last Snowflake Falls was awarded the Bronze Medal in Dan Poynter’s 2017 Global E-book Awards, is listed as ‘Recommended Reading’ with The US Review of Books, and was awarded an Honoree Medallion by indieB.R.A.G.. In addition, it has garnered a number of favorable reviews.

Links: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00NRZO920

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36291145-til-the-last-snowflake-falls

http://aleboysnowflake.wixsite.com/fawn

Social Media: https://www.facebook.com/The-Adventures-of-Fawn-740272912731782/