tall tales & short stories would like to welcome debut author, Jasmine Richards, to the blog.
In a video interview, Jasmine talks about her debut novel, The Book of Wonders, and what it's like to be on the other side of the publishing desk as an author, instead of in her usual role as a Senior Commissioning Editor at OUP.
THE BOOK OF WONDERS
Sorcerers, Cyclops, Djinnis . . . Magic.
Thirteen-year-old Zardi loves to hear stories about fantastical beings long banned from the kingdom of Arribitha. But anyone who is caught whispering of their powers will feel the rage of the sultan—a terrifying tyrant who, even with his eyes closed, can see all.
When her own beloved sister is captured by the evil ruler, Zardi knows that she must risk everything to rescue her. Along with Rhidan, who is her best friend, and an unlikely crew of sailors led by the infamous Captain Sinbad, Zardi ventures forth into strange and wondrous territory with a seemingly impossible mission: to bring magic back to Arribitha and defeat the sultan once and for all.
THE BOOK OF WONDERS ~ a tall tales & short stories review
I don't get sent enough Middle-Grade books, especially magical adventures that I think will captivate the younger reader, so I was excited to receive Jasmine Richards', The Book of Wonders. This is a fabulous tale full of derring-do, fantastical creatures, and two engaging main characters, Zardi and Rhidan. Zardi, a tomboy girl, who dreams of adventure on the high seas, and Rhidan, an orphaned boy adopted by Zardi's family, who is desperate to learn more about who he is and where he's from.
The author playfully includes familiar characters from literature's classic, 1001 Arabian Nights, but gives them a twist (I don't do spoilers so you'll have to read the book to find out more about Sinbad, Aladdin and others!) Zardi and Rhidan aren't just on one quest in the story, they're both looking for answers to their separate problems, and there are several adventures along the way, so there's always plenty for the reader to get their teeth into. Although there are several plot lines woven throughout the story and hints at future storylines, some endings are neatly tied up, while others have the reader looking forward to further adventures.
So, if you're after a story with plenty to offer, The Book of Wonders, should appeal to boys and girls who like a fast-paced, fantasy adventure with a few extra surprises thrown in!