Book Review- The Hammer of Thor

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The Hammer of Thor (Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard #2) by Rick Riordan
Published by Disney- Hyperion Books on October 4, 2016
Genres: Fantasy, Mythology, Young Adult, Middle Grade
Pages: 471
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Thor’s hammer is missing again. The thunder god has a disturbing habit of misplacing his weapon–the mightiest force in the Nine Worlds. But this time the hammer isn’t just lost, it has fallen into enemy hands. If Magnus Chase and his friends can’t retrieve the hammer quickly, the mortal worlds will be defenseless against an onslaught of giants. Ragnarok will begin. The Nine Worlds will burn. Unfortunately, the only person who can broker a deal for the hammer’s return is the gods’ worst enemy, Loki–and the price he wants is very high.

Once again I was disappointed by Magnus Chase. This book picks up a few months after the first one ends. It started off pretty well, and I almost thought that this book would be a little more clear with it’s plot and not have so many sub-plots. Not that I don’t enjoy a good sub-plot, it’s just that the first one had so many I began to loose sight of what the main point actually was.

But yet again, our heroes jump through world after world completing a series of tasks that make reading the book a bit tedious. It almost feels as if Riordan tried to stuff as many Norse stories as he could into one book, and forgot to refine it when he was finished. I would have been much happier with a Percy Jackson sized book that had a killer plot and not quite so much going on.

It also felt like this was a repeat of the first Magnus Chase. The same events happened with slight variations, and I found it pretty hard to keep focused on what was going on. It took me a lot longer than it should have to get through this one.

It could be that I’ve outgrown this type of story (which is sad to think about), but the more likely scenario is that by pumping out the volume of books that he is, the quality of Riordan’s writing is beginning to slip.

I know that review seemed kind of harsh, considering I am giving this book three hearts, but I feel like it all needed to be said. On a happier note, the book did have some funny and unique parts, and I still love the diversity and individuality of each of the characters.

So, The Hammer of Thor gets three out of five hearts from me.

♥ ♥ ♥

Book Review- The Sword of Summer

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The Sword of Summer (Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard #1) by Rick Riordan
Published by Disney- Hyperion Books on October 6, 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Mythology, Young Adult, Middle Grade
Pages: 499
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Magnus Chase has always been a troubled kid. Since his mother’s mysterious death, he’s lived alone on the streets of Boston, surviving by his wits, keeping one step ahead of the police and the truant officers.

One day, he’s tracked down by a man he’s never met—a man his mother claimed was dangerous. The man tells him an impossible secret: Magnus is the son of a Norse god.

The Viking myths are true. The gods of Asgard are preparing for war. Trolls, giants and worse monsters are stirring for doomsday. To prevent Ragnarok, Magnus must search the Nine Worlds for a weapon that has been lost for thousands of years.

When an attack by fire giants forces him to choose between his own safety and the lives of hundreds of innocents, Magnus makes a fatal decision.

Sometimes, the only way to start a new life is to die . . .

I’ve always been a huge fan of Rick Riordan. I love his ability to bring mythology to life in a modern era and create unlikely heroes out of unsuspecting teens. But when I read The Sword of Summer I felt let down. It felt to me like Riordan was trying to recreate Percy Jackson in the Norse world, and cram too many adventures into one plot.

Magnus is a likable character, and it is certainly entertaining to read from his point of view, but the whole book felt too familiar. It was like having a long lasting Deja vu. What I also found frustrating about this book is that straight from the beginning it includes Annabeth Chase, a Greek demigod, which makes it seem like this book really is trying to use the success of Percy Jackson to gain fame.

However, despite my disappointments, the book was a fun read. It retold a lot of Norse stories I heard as a child and brought them to life yet again. The characters were diverse and unique, and each had their own struggles, hopes, and dreams. They each were distinctly their own person, which is much appreciated.

I wouldn’t call The Sword of Summer a “must read”, but if you love the world that Riordan has created, this is a great way to delve into a new part of it while still seeing cameos of the older characters.

I am going to give the Sword of Summer three out of five hearts.

♥ ♥ ♥

Book Reivew- The Candymakers

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The Candymakers by Wendy Mass
Published by Little, Brown on October 5, 2010
Genres: Childrens- Middle Grade, Mystery, Fiction
Pages: 453
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Four children have been chosen to compete in a national competition to find the tastiest confection in the country. Who will invent a candy more delicious than the Oozing Crunchorama or the Neon Lightning Chew?

Logan, the Candymaker’s son, who can detect the color of chocolate by touch alone?

Miles, the boy who is allergic to merry-go-rounds and the color pink?

Daisy, the cheerful girl who can lift a fifty-pound lump of taffy like it’s a feather?

Or Philip, the suit-and-tie wearing boy who’s always scribbling in a secret notebook?

This sweet, charming, and cleverly crafted story, told from each contestant’s perspective, is filled with mystery, friendship, and juicy revelations.

The Candymakers is a sugary sweet feel good book, that is told in a pretty (cool) unusual way. The first part is told from Logan’s perspective. Then, it is retold from the perspectives of Miles, Daisy, and Logan respectively. Then, Logan takes the reigns again to continue the story.

I love how the book is written. Each time the first two days are told from a different character, key parts of the story fall into place and you slowly get the bigger picture. Each of the children is so unique and has such an interesting and unexpected story, and it makes the book so amazing!

Another thing I love about The Candymakers is how every character has their own challenges to face, yet they are all linked together by events that happened in the past (that some of them don’t even remember!). They each have different motivations and as the children get to know each other and spend time in the (amazing) candy factory, they learn important things about themselves.

Also, lets be real here for a minute: WE NEED THIS CANDY TO BE REAL!!! All I want to do is eat Neon Yellow Lightning Chews and a Pepsicle and Harmonicandy and Bubbletastic ChocoRockets and every single other candy in this book! Even the Bacon Pops! It needs to happen. All of it.

I am going to give The Candymakers five out of five hearts. If you haven’t read this, you need to!

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥