About This Blog

This blog was started as a place to post book reviews. The books reviewed here will be mixed. Science Fiction, Fantasy, Romance, General Fiction, NonFiction and more. Both positve and negative reviews will be posted, as well as reviews for books written for all ages and all reading levels.

Many of the books reviewed here are ones that I have purchased for my own reading pleasure. Some, I receive free in exchange for reviews. Beginning in December, 2009 you will know which are the free ones if you read the final paragraph of my reviews.

Also of note: I choose what I will read, attempting to avoid the books on which I would end up writing a negative review... but I have been known to make mistakes. Thus you see some one and two star reviews here. Since I don't enjoy writing negative reviews, I only write them if the review was promised, or if the book was so exceedingly bad, I just had to say so. Regardless of the percentage of positive to negative reviews on this blog, I give my honest opinion each and every time, and have never received financial compensation for posting my reviews.

Note that, except for fair use portions quoted from some of the books reviewed, all copyright in the content of the reviews belongs to Lady Dragoness.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Alternative Realities

The Journal of Curious Letters
(Book One of The 13th Reality Series)
By James Dashner
Hardcover: 432 pages
Publisher: Shadow Mountain (March 3, 2008)
Rated: 4 stars of 5 possible.

The premise of this novel is based on a few "what if" questions that create an interesting scenario. What if, every time you made a choice that had a significant consequence, a new, alternate reality was created - the life that would have been had you made the other choice? What if these new realities were in danger? What if it fell to you to save all the realities? Volume one of the new adventure series deals with the selection of the smartest, bravest youngsters who will become the realitants entrusted with this important mission.

I found The Journal of Curious Letters to be both creative and fun. The story was well written and the hardcover presentation is beautiful. Chapter titles and page headings are printed in an expressive and playful font to set the adventuresome mood. The nine black-and-white illustrations by Brian Beaus gracing this first edition are placed at strategic intervals to heighten the reader's interest without distracting him or her from the story.

Throughout the story, potential Realitants are given a letter from the Mysterious M.G. and a series of 12 clues, the answers to which will lead them on the adventure of their lives. Some of the clues weren't too difficult to figure out and I had the answer before I got to the point in the book where the characters had solved those little puzzles. Other clues took more time to solve. Some of the answers were surprising.

In all, I had a wonderful time reading this book and would recommend it to most fantasy readers ages 12 and up, with the caveat that some of the scenes - especially those from later in the story - might be a bit scary for the youngest readers.

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