Book reviews: Children’s books to be featured at reading camp

This book review of "A Series of Small Maneuvers," by Eliot Treichel, "Tales of the Fallen Beasts: Spirit Animals Special Edition," by Brandon Mull and "The Sword of Summer (Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard #1)," by Rick Riordan, is written by Emily Krall, executive director at BookTrails. This review was originally was published in Steamboat Pilot.

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A Series of Small Maneuvers Cover Image
ISBN: 9781932010794
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Ooligan Press - November 1st, 2015

"A Series of Small Maneuvers" is one of the best young-adult stories I’ve read in recent memory. Eliot Treichel is the latest winner of the Reading the West Award for this survival tale, told through the eyes of 15-year-old Emma Wilson. Emma and her father are on a camping trip in New Mexico when her father is killed in a tragic accident.

The story feels incredibly real as Emma is transported in time through segments of her life, leaving the reader desperate to turn the page and discover what happens next. As she navigates the heart-wrenching new world of grief her family endures, Emma also examines the outdoor survival techniques and decisions she employed in the backcountry during the accident.

Reminiscent of Gary Paulsen’s "The Hatchet," this is a fantastic read for teens and adults alike.

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Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard, Book 1 The Sword of Summer Cover Image
ISBN: 9781423160915
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Disney-Hyperion - October 6th, 2015

Fans of the Lightning Thief series, are in for a real treat with Riordan’s new Magnus Chase series. Without giving too many of the plot surprises away, the new series introduces Magnus, an orphan with a mysterious past living on the streets of Boston.

His life is turned upside down when his long-lost cousins warn him of a life-threatening enemy. He soon discovers he is related to the Norse Gods and enters a world of Viking mythology that is real and in which the threats are dire: There are trolls, giants and more. This tale will keep you up reading at night, engulfed in Norse Mythology as much as Magnus’ story.

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Tales of the Fallen Beasts (Spirit Animals: Special Edition) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780545901291
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scholastic Inc. - February 23rd, 2016

"Tales of the Fallen Beasts" is a great way to stay engaged in the Spirit Animals series while waiting for the next installment of the series to be published. This special-edition tale takes you to the world of Erdas in five short stories with new characters.

An evil villain named Zerif is invading the land and spreading a virus-like worm to the spirit animals and their companions. The worm causes the characters to enter a zombie-like state in which they are loyal to Zerif and his evil plans.

The book answers some questions about the Fall Beasts and gives additional details about how the new series started. This is a great companion book to the new Fallen Beast series and will delight Spirit Animal fans.