Wednesday, April 16, 2014

{Giveaway} The Glow: Helen Whapshott

Rating: 6/10
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Middle Grade, Fiction
Publication Date: March 14, 2014
Publisher: Little Bird Publishing House
Page Count: 199
Format: Digital
Source: The Author
Goodreads Synopsis: What would you do if you saw a ghost? Would you ignore it hoping it would fade away, or would you go up to it and see if it needed your help? When Thirteen year old Megan Webb discovers she has been gifted with The Glow, so called because it gives off a light, like a candle in a dimly lit room attracting ghosts, spirits, and others who belong to the supernatural and paranormal world, she has to learn to come to terms with seeing the world in a whole new way. And if this wasn’t enough to deal with during the delicate years between childhood and adolescence, her parents makes the shocking decision to move her away from everything and everyone she knows to live in a creepy hotel inherited by a late aunt. But it isn’t just the hotel that is creepy, the whole town seems a little odd until she makes friends with a strange boy, a Witch, and a chain-smoking spirit guide who help her adjust. Life couldn’t get any more complicated … could it?

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*I received this book from the author for review purposes which does not in the slightest affect my honest review of this book*

Plot 6/10: The beginning of the book was amazing. Chapter 1- What is a Ghost was magical. Not in the I'm-seeing-a-ghost-and-therefore-they're-actually-real magical but in the way that only wonderful authors can write. The first two-page chapter is a giant launching pad for this story. 

To read more, check out Helen Whapshott's blog post with the first two chapters of The Glow.

Characters 8/10: I loved Megan's friend, Daisy, because of how strong, empathetic, and relatable she was. Despite what had happened to her parents, and how she was physically changed, she didn't change on the outside. Daisy had been mocked, and teased, and taunted her entire life because of the rumors that surrounded her about being a witch. Yet, a little 12 year old girl (I hope she's 12 and not 13, my memory just isn't what is used to be) was strong enough to face the people that hurt her, and be a better person because of it. 

Romance 8/10: *Romance Only Spoiler Alert* I cannot get over how cute Daisy and Scott are together. I am aware that they're only 12, and in Middle School, but they just seem like perfect matches for each other. It is only implied that they like each other as more than friends, but I (as usual) interpreted the romance as something WAY bigger than it actually was, and they are my new MG OTP.
Daisy and Scott are obviously not a duck and a little boy, but this is the cuteness level of their relationship
Writing Style 7.5/10: What was interesting, and slightly confusing was how The Glow truly utilized 3rd person. Most commonly, third person is used so an author can throw in an occasional 'This Secondary Character thought that in response to what the Main Character just said' kind of statement. Instead, Whapshott made it so that we, as the readers, got entire backstories, and explanations as to why a character is the way they are.   

Besides that, there was just something about Helen Whapshott's writing that made me want to read more. It wasn't even the plot, or a specific character, or event, but the overall feel accompanied with word choice was spectacular. I could just hear the voice-over that would happen at the beginning of the movie, and I could picture every detail of the setting and people.

Cover 8/10: I can't be the only one that thinks the cover is gorgeous. Can I? It is very simple, but powerful because it looks like a girl reaching out to someone/something that could be a spirit. The sheer white dress and hair blowing in the wind add the the affect the cover gives off, that something powerful and almost above our comprehension is happening.

Theme: The themes of The Glow were a lot more complicated and deeper than I originally expected from a Middle Grade novel. It was a very light Middle Grade story, but there were strong messages about hope, perseverance, and caring that I loved. The trio had to work very hard to help a soul that hadn't/couldn't pass over yet find her parents and have closure which was very admirable.

Continuation 80%: I have asked Helen, and it looks like we are getting a sequel to The Glow which I am definitely going to read so I can find out what happens next in Daisy, Scott, and Megan's story.

Conclusion: I can imagine myself reading The Glow to my children because of the strong themes, great concept, and a lovely cast of characters. 
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