Thursday, April 30, 2020

No Bears Allowed Lydia Lukidis, Tara J. Hannon

Rabbit is deathly afraid of bears.  They have such nasty claws and big teeth.

Blue Whale Press and Edelweiss let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published July 1st.

H gets caught in a snare and is hanging from the tree when the bear shows up.  The bear assures him he didn't set the snare and helps to set him free.  When he gets down from the tree, the bear shows his teeth and claws and rabbit thinks he's done for.  No, the bear was scaring off a fox that was after the rabbit. 

He takes the rabbit home with him to make carrot soup.  The rabbit just knows he's going to go in the soup pot, too, so he runs.  But he hears the bear calling for help. He goes back.  The bear is scared of a spider.  The rabbit takes it outside and then has a bowl of carrot soup with the bear.

Not all bears are mean and want to eat you.  That's true about people too.  We are all individuals, some good, some bad.

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Exquisite: The Poetry and Life of Gwendolyn Brooks by Suzanne Slade, Cozbi A. Cabrera

Gwendolyn grew up with poetry.  Her father read it in the evenings.  It didn't take long until she was writing her own...

Abrams young readers allowed me to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published on April 7th.

When she sends her poetry in to a newspaper, they print it.  So does the magazine she sends it to.  Then the depression hits and no one is paying for printing anymore.  Then she gathers a pile of poetry and sends it to a book publisher.  He wants twice as much to make a book.  She sends him more.  He prints it.

She begins writing poetry about growing up in Chicago and sends that to the publisher.  He prints another book.

One day when she's without heat, the phone rings.  It's journalist who tells her she has won the Pulitzer prize for her second book!

She always had big dreams.  Now they are starting to come true.

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Good Guys, Bad Guys by Joanne Rocklin, Nancy Carpenter

This is a fun read.  A brother and sister each play a bad guy and a good guy.  They and their friends use their imaginations and become pirates and more in the afternoon.

Abrams Young Readers let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published on May 5th.

They even act as cowboys!  The good guys are there but don't butt in on the games unless someone needs help.  They have a great day and when bedtime comes, The brother says he'll be the bad guy in the morning.  His sister agrees, she'll be the good guy tomorrow.

They have great imaginations!

Monday, April 27, 2020

Lion Needs a Haircut by Hyewon Yum

His father tells him he needs a haircut.  He says he likes his hair the way it is.  There is more discussion but dad wins the argument.

Abrams Young Readers allowed me to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published on May 5th.

Then the son says he'll get his haircut if his dad gets his cut too.  Dad is not crazy about this idea and says he likes his hair as it is.  But mom pipes up and suggests a haircut would be a good idea.

So two unwilling lions go to the barber shop.  Will they like their haircuts when they are done?

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Fox & Rabbit by Beth Ferry, Gergely Dudas (Illustrations)

This is a graphic novel in chapters.  Fox and rabbit are very good friends and they each work on the others fears.

Amulet books sent me a copy of this book to read and review (thank you).  It has been published and you can grab a copy now.

They go to the fair and Rabbit wants to ride the Ferris wheel.  Fox doesn't like it because it goes so high.  They eat cotton candy, play lots of games where fox wins all the prizes and then rabbit gets fox to go for a ride.  He's scared but he finds it's fun and not bad at all.

They look for hidden treasure, plant a garden in their back yard, they even go swimming although rabbit didn't want to.  He finds it's good fun.

Having a good friend means you'll learn some new things.

This book is nicely done and children will read it more than once.

Saturday, April 25, 2020

The Request by David Bell

He was doing a buddy a favor.  He sneaks in the house to retrieve some letters written by his buddy.  The house is torn apart, he can't find the letters and he unfortunately finds a dead body.

Berkley and Net Galley allowed me to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published June 30th.

His buddy claims no knowledge about the murder.  He also blackmails Ryan into remaining silent about it.  He claims a drunk Ryan ran over a girl and hit her sister.  Ryan doesn't remember.  But his buddy uses it for all he's worth.

This story is filled with lies and only here and there does the truth come out.

There are those who are envious of Ryan and his perfect life.  He wants to help his buddy but all he is is trouble.  Ryan gets caught up in his buddy's mess and even his family get threatened.  Ryan is trying to get clear but even his wife has lied to him.

Poor Ryan.  His life is spiraling out of control.  Can he stop it in time?


Friday, April 24, 2020

Vagrant Queen Volume 1 by Magdalene Visaggio, Jason Smith

Elida was a child queen until she was driven off her throne by revolutionaries.  She's grown up now and an old enemy looks her up.  He claims to know where they are holding her mother.

Vault Comics and Edelweiss gave me the opportunity to read this book for review (thank you).  It's been published and you can grab a copy now. 

She heads back to her kingdom to find her.  The fights are dirty, he tries to betray her her and the action increases.

This story isn't boring, there's plenty of action and she's fighting for her life the whole time...

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Oddly Normal Book 1 by Otis Frampton

She's a ten year old half-witch with green hair and pointed ears.  She different from all the other students and they all make fun of her.  She hates it.

Image Comics and Edelweiss gave me the opportunity to read this book for review (thank you).  It has already been published so you can get a copy now.

It's her birthday but her parents are both so busy with each other, they ignore her.  She gets irritated and shouts "Why don't you just disappear!"  She finds herself on the ground.  Not only are her parents gone, so is the house...

When a relative shows up, she takes her home with her.  She lives in the town that Odddly's parents had warned her about.  But school there has all sorts of students even weirder than her and she likes it.  But there is more to come...

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

The Land of Roar by Jenny McLachlan, Ben Mantle (Illustrated by)

When Arthur and Rose were little they visited a magical world and had a lot of fun.  They thought it wasn't real. 

Harper Collins and Edelweiss allowed me to read this story for review (thank you).  It will be published  June 30th.

Arthur wanted to go there again but Rose didn't.  He's amazed when his grandpa uses the way they went.  He came out on the other side and then turned around and back in again.  This time he didn't come out. He went to their other world.  Arthur calls his sister and while she didn't want to go back, she agees.  They need to save their grandpa.

When they return they find things have changed.  The mean crowman has imprisoned their grandpa and intends to make him a scare crow filled with straw.  They have to save him!  But they find other people to help, too.

This is quite an adventure and you have all kids of strange creatures.  You even have a group of Lost Girls.  It's an enjoyable read middle graders will love.

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Ella Has A Plan by Davina Hamilton

Ella doesn't like her cousins fighting and she especially doesn't want them to do it during her mother's birthday party.  But how can she stop them?

The Ella Riley Group and Net Galley let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published on May 14th.

Her mother tells her her Grandfather stopped his kids from fighting but before she can find out what he did, the cousins are there fighting.  She tries to stop them but they won't listen to her. 

So she comes up with a new plan and gets her uncle to help.  That plan works and her mother is proud of her.

Can you guess what her plan was?

Monday, April 20, 2020

Eliza Starts a Rumor by Jane L. Rosen

Eliza dreams up a post for female group alluding to someone being married to a man who isn't true to her.  She never imagined what happened...

Berkley and Net Galley allowed me to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published June 23rd.

The rumor forces several wives to wonder if their husbands are telling them the truth.  They decide to check then out.  A few of them were not telling the truth.  The wives want to prove their infidelity to get a better settlement in the divorce.

You read about their spy work and who helps them bring a good case to court.

When Eliza realizes her fake rumor has caused divorces, she feels guilty.  But the ladies thank her for making them see the truth.  All because of a post on a bulletin board group...

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Death on Windmill Way by Carrie Doyle

Antonia has purchased an old inn, remodeled it, fixed up the kitchen, and now has the restaurant as well as the inn.  She enjoys cooking and would like to spend more time in the kitchen.  She has bills to pay and guests to greet.  Then she hears a nasty rumor.  All the owners of the inn are murdered.  She decides to investigate.

Poison Pen Press and Edelweiss let me read this book (thank you).  It will be published June 30th.

She finds that the last owner died of a bee sting.  Everyone thought it was a heart attack, but one of the paramedics thinks other wise.  She starts looking for where  you could acquire a bee.  They aren't usually  out in December.

She has a number of suspects.  Two fighting females, several beekeepers, and folks who held a grudge.  As she weeds thriugh that, another inn owner was murdered.  She was an old lady who keot to herself.  Why would someone murder her?

Now she has two murder cases to solve.  She asks more questions and then she invites everyone to dinner.  They all come, some grumble about it.  Then she talks about the case,  The murderer was a complete surprise to me.

This is a good mystery with plenty of action and problems to overcome.

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Mesa Verde Victim by Scott Graham

Chuck is headed for home when he sees emergency vehicles all around his house.   He's concerned about his wife but the body is bigger than that.  He's totally shocked to find it's Barney, a friend of his.  Who would have killed him in his backyard?

Torrey House Press and Edelweiss let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published June 16th.

There are very old Indian artifacts hidden on the mesa.  Barny was part of the crew working on finding them.  You meet greedy people who want to sell the artifacts, those who are trying to protect them, and those who would like to see them left alone.

There is another murder.  They warn Chuck to stop snooping around but he doesn't like being a murder suspect.  He almost turns into the next victim..

I had no idea who the murderer was and was very surprised to find out who it was...

Friday, April 17, 2020

The Amish School Teacher : A Romance by Jerry Eicher

Mary is tired of everyone's comments trying to encourage her to marry.  She applies to  another Amish school in another town to be hired as a school teacher.  She's hired.

Good Books and Edelweiss allowed me to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published on June 9th.

She's to share lodging with an older Amish couple.  She rides the train to town and a handsome young man is there to pick her up.  The match-making hasn't gone away.  She has three suitcases.  One is a brilliant turquoise blue.  He lets her know he thinks she's brought too much and that the blue is not appropriate for an Amish person.  Not a good start.

They continue to spar with each other until she finds out about his background.  His father had a heart attack and died when he was still a teen.  He had to step up and become the man of the family and run the farm.  He's closed off his heart and his hurt.  He just works all day.  But Mary decides to see if she can get him to open up and share his hurt.  He doesn't want to but he can't forget what she's said.

As he gets to know her, he finds she can do farm chores, not just teach.  His siblings love how she teaches.

With time, they finally start communicating with each other.  Where will it go from here?

Thursday, April 16, 2020

The Forgotten Home Child by Genevieve Graham

She's getting quite old and when her granddaughter asks about the past, she decides to tell the story she's kept hidden for so long.  She was a homeless child in London who was gathered up and shipped out to Canada.  She made friends on the ship and hung on to the ones she knew in London.  But their lives were about to change dramatically.

Simon and Schuster let me read this book for review (thank you).  It has been published and you can grab a copy now.

Depending on who took you to help them on their farm, you could work all day, get little food, and you were beat if you didn't get enough done.  Or you might get lucky to get a family that treated you well, but those were few and far between.

We follow the story of Winny.  She loses people she loves, suffers many hardships, and has trouble trying to be positive.  Her best friend ends up having a baby and having it taken away.  She asks Winny to find him and raise him as her own.

This is based on the true story of the British Home Children.  It's not a nice tale but Winny survives.  She also has a very heartwarming surprise at the end.

All you can do with the life you're handed is the best you can.  Winny did that.

Claymont Farms, With Champ, The Wonder Horse by M. D. Ballard

This book is perfect for any young reader who loves horses.  It's full of information on how to raise them, talks about showing them, and Candace has a special rapport with them.

BooksGoSocial and Net Galley let me read this book for review (thank you).  It has been published, so you can get a copy now.

Candace is very excited her uncle is buying and bringing Champ back home.  She offers to be his trainer and they bond on the very first day.  She finds she can understand him.  He uses ESP to get his messages across.  She keeps it a secret.  She doesn't want then to think she's nuts!

She teaches him things that are unusual for a stallion to obey.  But he does.  She notices he's depressed and she suggests to her uncle they get him a mate.  She has to research the bloodlines, check out their medical records and see how they look.  She gives her info to her uncle and he picks the best.   Then they make a big event about the two of them meeting.  Soon Champ is going to have a son...

Then her uncle picks up Rosie. Champ's mother.  They keep her in another barn until she's passed her health tests.  Then they have an even bigger event when they introduce the two of them.

I like horses and I learned a lot reading this book.  So will your young reader!

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Behind the Bookcase by Mark Steensland

Willow the Armadillo by Marilou Reeder

Willow loves picture books.  The only thing better would be to be the hero in one!

Abram's Books let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published on April28th.

She goes to a number of auditions but they don't choose her.  After hiding a bit she heads back to the library to check some more books out.  While there, the lights go out.  All the other animals panic!

Willow holds up her book light and draws them to her.  Then she reads picture boooks to them to calm them down.  When the lights come back on, the librarian tells her she's a hero.

The next time she goes to the library, Willow gets a surprise...

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Anna Strong A Spy During the American Revolution by Sarah Glenn Marsh

George Washington needed to know what the British were doing, so he created a spy ring.  In that era it was a good idea to use a woman as a spy.  No one would suspect her...

Abrams allowed to read this book for review (thank you).  It has been published and you can get a copy now.

In time, Anna learned to signal messages by the laundry she hung out to dry.  Her black petticoat meant there was a message to go.

Her husband is arrested and she learns to bribe the guards so she can visit and feed him.

I admire her for her strength and her ability to get the right messages.  It was her message to Washington that helped him defeat the British.

You could send your own messages using the secret code in the back of the book!

Monday, April 13, 2020

Go Get 'em Tiger by Sabrina Moyle

This is a positive book.  Reading it should pump your child up and give them confidence in themselves.

Abrams Appleseed let me read this book for review.  It has been published and you can grab a copy now.

The tiger is exuberant and proud of what he can do.  He makes friends with all the animals.  The author admits you may fail here and there, but just keep on doing good things and those memories fade.

This book would be a good gift for the child that has accomplished a goal or for one who is a bit unsure about what they are doing.  A "rah, rah, rah" book is a nice gift.

Sunday, April 12, 2020

The Lifeline by Margaret Mayhew

Ruth has taken over her dead mother's manor and grows plants for sale there.  Her husband is the local doctor and he refers patients to her to work on easy tasks in the garden and help them get their minds straight again.

Severn House and Net Galley let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published on June 2nd.

The gardening project is going along well until they find a dead body in the tomato plants...

Laurence was recovering from a stroke and was not a very nice man.  He said nasty things to everyone, so there are plenty of suspects.  They ask the Colonel to investigate because the cops have picked the local mentally challenged young man as the killer.  No one but the cops believe that.

The Colonel questions everyone and finds no suspects.  Then he remembers what one witness said he saw.  He goes to ask one person some new questions...

Saturday, April 11, 2020

Deadly Primrose by Suzette A. Hill

When a woman is found in the surf, everyone assumes she drowned while she was swimming.  Primrose thinks they're wrong.  The lady hated the sea and never would have worn a swimming cap like that.  The Inspector says she's wrong.  So she decides to investigate on her own.

Severn House and Net Galley allowed me to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published June 2nd.

Primrose begins asking questions and before too long the woman's sister is at the door.  As they chat, she asks more questions.  Then the sister admits she and an accomplice killed the woman.  Then she gets up and races down the hill in her car headed for home.  She hits the gate posts and doesn't make it all the way out.  They find her a bit down the road in the ditch.  Someone shot her!

The next guilty party she finds tells her he shot her.  He intends to shoot Primrose, too, but the sound of a motorbike grabs his attention.  He trips and falls but he doesn't get up.  Another killer bites the dust.

Now she's on the hunt for the accomplice...  Will she find him or will he find her?
 

Friday, April 10, 2020

The Red, Red Snow by Caro Ramsay

A man is stabbed to death at big Christmas event at the mall.  They have no suspects.  Then on Christmas Eve a couple is killed at a house where there was a big party earlier.  Again there are no suspects...

Severn House and Net Galley let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published June 2nd.

It's a small private gated area so they begin looking over all the families.  Many of them have secrets.  Among those secrets some are not all normal.  Some have mental health problems.

They question everyone.  Some think it must be the rumored monster that lives in the woods.  Their main suspect is young man who had blood on him from the dead man.  He had gone to clean up after the party and said he found the man dead.  As it happens, the man died from natural causes.  But his wife didn't.

The more they talk to, the cloudier it gets.  They begin talking to the teenagers and they can tell some are lying.  They keep pressing.

The worst part was that the deaths were unnecessary.  It's sad what some will do for love...

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Off Script by Graham Hurley

Enora is taking care of an old lover of hers.  He got drunk, dived in the pool,and found out he was in the shallow end.  He's now mostly paralyzed.  Carrie helps her.  Then Carrie tells her about the young man who has threatened to kill her...

Severn House and Net Galley allowed me to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published June 2nd.

When Carrie doesn't show up for work, Enora goes to check on her and finds her dead.  She tells the cops what she knows.

Then she meets a new man.  She's quite taken with him and they have good times together.  Then he invites her on a trip to France.  She's having fun until she finds out he's there to pick up cocaine.  She stays.  Then she finds a phone that has x-rated pictures of Carrie.  He said he only talked to her a couple times and it was work related.  Can she trust him or not?

When he shows up in her bedroom all dressed in black, she's scared.  She makes him leave and cuts him out of her life.  But he's not done yet...

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

The Doom List by Gerard O'Donovan

The director loved making movies.  He can tell when he has a good one and that's the one he's working on now.  Then he learns the new head of the department expects perfect behavior from the stars and wants all the movies clean.  If he sees any transgressions he adds them to his "Doom List" and they will be fired...

Severn House and Net Galley let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published June 2nd.

The director hires a private investigator to protect his leading lady from trouble.  The PI finds all kinds of things that he has to watch for.  The newspapers are all looking for dirt.  The cops aren't clean.  And her co-star has lost his lover and wants to find him.

These characters are better at weaving a web than a spider.  The PI keeps following the threads trying to  keep everyone safe.  That's no small feat.

You learn about the old movie world and feel sorry for those who face a loss.  It's a long busy tale that will keep you reading...

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

The Hour of the Fox by Cassandra Clark

This is a historical novel set in 1399.  They've found a young novice with her throat cut in the local river.  Brother Rodric Chandler is determined to find her killer...

Severn House and Net Galley let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be publishe June 2nd.

As he tries to figure out how she left the priory and who killed her, there are bigger events going on.

Those who want power will kill anybody who stands in their way.  When the King goes away to take care of troubles further away, there's a scramble to see who can take his place and become the new King.  They capture the old King.  No one can say anything about the new one without losing their head.

This covers a very bloody period in history with allegiances moving back and forth. You learn a lot about the politics of the day and how the people got the promotions they did.

If nothing else, I'm real glad I didn't live then.  It was very dangerous!

Monday, April 6, 2020

The Indigo Ghosts by Alys Clare

Gabriel has been summoned to the ship he used to work on.  His captain tells him the crew is spooked.  They think they are seeing ghosts...

Severn House and Net Galley let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published Hune 2nd.

He can feel the odd sensations the sailors are talking about.  So he searches the ship and finds a small room way up at the end of the boat in the storage compartment.  They also find a body...

The body is very old and while they debate what to do with it, it disappears.

Then more bodies show up.  They all have blue hands, which is a mystery.

This historical novel is set at a bad time in history.  The Spanish makes slaves of anyone they find.  They treat the negro slaves better than the white slaves.  It's no wonder they tried to escape.

They are hiding in England now but the Spaniards are still looking for them. Will Gabriel and his friends find them before the Spaniards do? 

Sunday, April 5, 2020

The Clutter Corpse by Simon Brett

She's created a business for herself by cleaning up houses that hoarders live in.  When she goes out on a new job, she has no idea that she will find a dead body under some clutter.  It wasn't hurt by the clutter, it was an overdose.

Severn House and Net Galley let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published June 2nd.

If that wasn't bad enough she runs across another dead body.  Two bodies in a week make the police suspicious.  Why was she the one who found them?  Did she kill them?

This story gets into dysfunctional families and fractured friendships.  The only way she can clear herself is to find the killer(s).  So she begins asking questions and putting clues together.

I was surprised by the identity of the killers.  I was also surprised when her good friend turned out not to be.  Being betrayed by a friend hurts.  But the father of the dead girl is hurt by an even closer betrayal.

She finds the killers but the book doesn't end happily ever after.  However, justice was served.

Saturday, April 4, 2020

Hilda and the Great Parade : Hilda Netflix Tie-In 2 by Luke Pearson, Stephen Davies, Seaerra Miller (Illustrated by)

Hilda is having a hard time adjusting to living in town.  She loved being in the hills with all kinds of monstrous friends.  Everything in town is too tame.  But when a giant steps on your house and flattens it, you have no choice.

Flying Eye Books and Edelweiss let me read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published June 2nd.

She has one boy who likes to bully her.  When he throws a a rock and knocks a raven out of the sky, she takes it home to heal.  She's totally amazed when it begin speaking to her.

Hilda has a way of getting in trouble without trying.  She fears no animal but humans are something she has trouble figuring out.

When she comes home and the raven is gone, her mother tells her it was her friend David who took it.  She asks for a description and learns it was the bully who took it.  She's determined to get it back...

Hilda's adventures are always fun to read!

Friday, April 3, 2020

The Unadoptables by Hana Tooke





They lived in an orphanage run by a mean old lady.  No one wanted to adopt them, they were too old.  They are only twelve but the are their own persons by now...

Viking Books for Young Readers and Edelweiss allowed me to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published June 2nd.

All of the babies were just dropped off.  They have no idea who their parents are.  They arrived in all kinds of receptacles. One was even in a bucket.

They have one final person coming to look them all over.  The director tells them whoever is left over will have to leave.  She doesn't want them anymore.

The man is a sea captain and he agrees to take all five.  The problem is that he's no nicer than the director.  He intends to work them hard and he's prepared to bury them at sea when they wear out.  He takes them with him.

They manage to escape from the ship and they head out to find Milou's parents. They find where they used to live.  It's a lighthouse.  But no one is there.  They decide to stay there on their own and figure out ways to earn money for food.

The orphans are a team and they do well until the ship's captain finds them again...

There's plenty of action, lots of bravery, and an "I won't quit" attitude that makes this an enjoyable read.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Safecracker by Ryan Wick

He's going in to steal a valuable coin.  No one is home.  Then he hears the locks turn and voices.  He hides in the closet.

Thomas Dunne Books and Edelweiss gave me the opportunity to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published on August 11th.

He sure didn't expect the man to come home with a woman he picked up.  As he watches, she kills him and grabs the coin.  Then she sees him in the closet.  They have a battle but she gets away with the coin.

When he's hanging out at his local bar, she shows up again and slits his throat!  He survives.

It doesn't take long before he finds himself in between two warring drug cartels.  One wants him to steal a ledger from the other.  He agrees because he has no choice but he knows they will kill him after he gets the leader what he wants.  How can he survive?

This whole story is full of atrocities and murder.  No one trusts anyone.  Look at the boss wrong and you're dead.

It looks like there is no way out but he's not going to give up...

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

The Oddmire, Book 2: The Unready Queen by William Ritter

Fable is half-human.  Her mother is working on teaching her magic, but she just can't quite get it.  She has a couple human friends and a goblin changeling friend.  She'd rather play with them...

Algonquin Young Readers and Edelweiss shared this book with me for review (thank you).  It will be published June 2nd.

There is a stranger in town who claims to be looking for oil.  When he chops down an old oak in the Deep Dark Forest.  Fable's mother is upset.  He has unbalanced the forest and the creatures within want revenge.  They never did like humans.  This is just a convenient excuse to get rid of some of them.

Fable finds out the real reason for the revolt.  He's digging up the graves of their ancestors.  He can see dollar signs in front of his eyes.  Using the powdery ash in an elixir can fix all kinds of ailments.  He's not going to walk away.  He's going to be rich!

He riles up the town folk until they are ready to help him kill the creatures of the Deep Forest.  Fable tries to stop them by telling them he was the one causing the mischief, not the creatures.  They ignore her.  Then her mother turns up.  He starts swallowing vials of the elixir and turns into a giant.

He begins choking Fable.  Her mother transforms into a bear and attacks him.  Someone in rhe crowd shoots her.  Fable is angry and sad and she starts using that magic she couldn't before...

This is a very active story line with lots of action.  There are all kinds of creatures, even rock trolls, and they all play a part in the story.  This is the second book I've read in this series and it's even better than the first.  If your child likes fantasy, they'll love this book!