The Mostly Invisible Boy by AJ Vanderhorst – Spotlight

A fast-paced middle grade fantasy/adventure book .

WHAT’S THE BOOK ABOUT

Eleven-year-old Casey is stubbornly friendly, but he’s eternally the new kid at Vintage Woods Middle School. Students look right through him—and they’re not faking. Casey doesn’t know why he’s mostly-invisible, but when he scales a colossal oak, he discovers a fortress in its branches. The forgotten sentry tree marks the border between his safe, suburban life and a fierce frontier.

Casey and his little sister Gloria infiltrate Sylvan Woods, a secret forest society devoted to ancient, wild things. Sky-high footpaths. Survival sewing. Monster control. Shockingly, people here actually see Casey—but being seen isn’t enough. He wants to belong.

Keeping his identity hidden–while struggling to prove he fits–is hard enough, but Butcher Beasts have returned to Sylvan Woods after a hundred years. Trickery is under siege. As the monsters close in, and the fearsome Sylvan Watch hunts Casey down, he and his newfound friends must unearth abandoned magic, buried at the forest’s roots…or be devoured along with everyone else, Sylvans and civilians alike.

A fast-paced middle grade fantasy/adventure book with all the monsters kids could ever hope for.

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Fifteen Incredible Books I Read in 2020

Our generation is sure to remember the year 2020 for the rest of our lives. In these tough times, books kept me company (what else can you expect from a book blogger). They helped me escape from all the sadness and negativity that this year heaped upon us.

Let’s have a look at the fifteen books that I enjoyed reading the most in 2020. These are the books whose stories are still fresh in my mind despite having read (at least some of them) months ago. They are from a variety of genres – thrillers, literary fiction, historical fiction, and fantasy.

Fifteen Incredible books I read in 2020 - Debjani's Thoughts Book blog
Fifteen Incredible books I read in 2020
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A Wolf for a Spell by Karah Sutton – Review | Blog Tour

An enchanting Russian folklore retelling.

WHAT’S THE BOOK ABOUT

The Girl Who Drank the Moon meets Pax in this fantastical tale of a wolf who forms an unlikely alliance with Baba Yaga to save the forest from a wicked tsar.

Since she was a pup, Zima has been taught to fear humans—especially witches—but when her family is threatened, she has no choice but to seek help from the witch Baba Yaga.

Baba Yaga never does magic for free, but it just so happens that she needs a wolf’s keen nose for a secret plan she’s brewing… Before Zima knows what’s happening, the witch has cast a switching spell and run off into the woods, while Zima is left behind in Baba Yaga’s hut—and Baba Yaga’s body!

Meanwhile, a young village girl named Nadya is also seeking the witch’s help, and when she meets Zima (in Baba Yaga’s form), they discover that they face a common enemy. With danger closing in, Zima must unite the wolves, the witches and the villagers against an evil that threatens them all.

A Wolf for a Spell by Karah Sutton - Review
A Wolf for a Spell by Karah Sutton – Review | Blog Tour

Rating: 4 out of 5.
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The Barren Grounds: The Misewa Saga, Book 1 by David A. Robertson – Review

WHAT’S THE BOOK ABOUT

Narnia meets traditional Indigenous stories of the sky and constellations in an epic middle grade fantasy series from award-winning author David Robertson.

Morgan and Eli, two Indigenous children forced away from their families and communities, are brought together in a foster home in Winnipeg, Manitoba. They each feel disconnected, from their culture and each other, and struggle to fit in at school and at their new home — until they find a secret place, walled off in an unfinished attic bedroom.

A portal opens to another reality, Askí, bringing them onto frozen, barren grounds, where they meet Ochek (Fisher). The only hunter supporting his starving community, Misewa, Ochek welcomes the human children, teaching them traditional ways to survive.

But as the need for food becomes desperate, they embark on a dangerous mission. Accompanied by Arik, a sassy Squirrel they catch stealing from the trapline, they try to save Misewa before the icy grip of winter freezes everything — including them.

The Barren Grounds: The Misewa Saga, Book 1 by David A. Robertson - Review
The Barren Grounds: The Misewa Saga, Book 1 by David A. Robertson – Review

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
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Brother’s Keeper by Julie Lee – Review & Blog Tour

A haunting family tale against the backdrop of an oppressive regime.

I am thrilled to be hosting a spot on the BROTHER’S KEEPER by Julie Lee Blog Tour hosted by Rockstar Book Tours. Check out my review and make sure to enter the giveaway!

WHAT’S THE BOOK ABOUT

Can two children escape North Korea on their own?

North Korea. December, 1950.

Twelve-year-old Sora and her family live under an iron set of rules: No travel without a permit. No criticism of the government. No absences from Communist meetings. Wear red. Hang pictures of the Great Leader. Don’t trust your neighbors. Don’t speak your mind. You are being watched.

But war is coming, war between North and South Korea, between the Soviets and the Americans. War causes chaos–and war is the perfect time to escape. The plan is simple: Sora and her family will walk hundreds of miles to the South Korean city of Busan from their tiny mountain village. They just need to avoid napalm, frostbite, border guards, and enemy soldiers.

But they can’t. And when an incendiary bombing changes everything, Sora and her little brother Young will have to get to Busan on their own. Can a twelve-year-old girl and her eight-year-old brother survive three hundred miles of warzone in winter?

Haunting, timely, and beautiful, this harrowing novel from a searing new talent offers readers a glimpse into a vanished time and a closed nation.

A Junior Library Guild Selection

Brother's Keeper by Julie Lee - Review
Brother’s Keeper by Julie Lee – Review & Blog Tour

Rating: 4 out of 5.
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