FROGSPELL by C.J. Busby
Released: September 2011
Publisher: Templar Publishing
Review Format: Paperback finished copy
Source: Received from the publisher in return for an honest review
Series: Yes, Book #1
Page Count: 158
The first in a four-book series for younger readers set in the time of King Arthur. The adventures revisit Camelot, Merlin and Arthur but with a fresh touch, great characterisation and dialogue, and humour. The stories are well plotted, funny and perfectly pitched for the younger reader. Would-be wizard Max, his sister (who wants to be a knight), two humorous pet animal characters - Ferocious, a world-weary rat and Adolphus, an over-enthusiastic young dragon, encounter magic, double-dealing, Morgan le Fay's schemes to win the throne from Arthur, magical quests and more. Other titles coming in 2012: Cauldron Spells, Ice Spell and Sword Spell.Synopsis from Goodreads. Frogspell was a cute and imaginative read which had me under its spell in just a few short paragraphs. Written for younger readers, the print is larger than normal with wider line spacing which made reading very quick. Each chapter begins with a beautiful illustration by David Wyatt, which really adds to the character of the book.
Max is a young wannabe wizard who lives with his parents, younger sister Olivia, Ferocious the rat and Adolphus, a forgetful and bumbling baby dragon. The family are attending the Annual Festival at the castle of King Arthur, where it is rumoured that Merlin, the great wizard lives and Max wants to enter the Novices’ Spell Making competition with his newly discovered frog spell, which has been won the last few years by the nasty cheating Adrian ‘Snotty’ Hogsbottom.
The characters were adorable and there was lots of humour throughout the book and I often found myself chuckling at their antics, especially Adolphus the dragon. The storyline was fun to read and all the way through I was thinking how much my son will love this book in a couple of years time.
A definite must-read for middle graders upwards and I am definitely looking forward to reading the next book in this 4 part series, Cauldron Spell, which is out early in 2012.My rating: 4 stars