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Thursdays with the Crown by Jessica Day George ARC {4.5 Stars}

Thursdays with the Crown is the third book about Castle Glower, which seems to be alive, and the royal family that lives within its magical walls. Thursdays with the Crown can be easily read without having read the first two though, so if you like the idea of a spunky young princess, her feminine but strong older sister, and their various friends and relatives (including a griffin or two!) then definitely check out this whimsical and downright fun middle grade fantasy!

Note: I received an advanced copy of Thursdays with the Crown from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

Thursdays with the Crown by Jessica Day George ARC {4.5 Stars}

Thursdays with the Crown by Jessica Day George (Castle Glower #3)
Published by Bloomsbury on Oct. 7th, 2014
Genres: Fantasy, MG
Page Length: 224 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
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Castle Glower has been acting weird, so it’s no surprise when two towers transport Celie and her siblings to an unknown land. When they realize that no one from home is coming to get them, the kids – along with Celie’s pet griffin Rufus – set out through the forest to figure out where they are and what’s happened to their beloved Castle. Instead, they discover two wizards and an entire lost people, the oldest inhabitants of Castle Glower. And it seems they may know more of the Castle’s secrets than Celie. But do they know how to get her back home?

4.5 Stars

Strengths:

  • Thursdays with the Crown takes place away from the Castle Glower we’ve come to know from the previous books, so we finally get to explore more of the world and go adventuring in forests, tombs, and mountain tunnels!
  • We find out A LOT more about the origins of the Castle and the griffins we’ve come to love in Thursdays with the Crown and it’s pretty great. I love it when middle grade stories still care about building an interesting world with politics and people of all different types.
  • Thursdays with the Crown has a really great lesson about the whole good vs. evil dichotomy that you find in most stories for younger readers: there are multiple sides to every conflict and neither side is entirely noble or entirely corrupt. I can’t say more without giving away one of the fun twists, but I think some really great discussions could stem from Thursdays with the Crown and I kind of wish there was a middle grade reader I could force this fun lesson on ;-).
  • The second that I finished Wednesdays in the Tower I was DYING for Thursdays with the Crown and George has done it again! The ending of Thursdays with the Crown is the perfect combination of tying up the strings of this book’s plot while planting the seeds of excitement for the next adventure Celie wants to undertake!
  • There is a nice amount of reminders about what happened in previous books without getting to info-dump levels, so you really don’t have to worry about not knowing what is going on at all.
  • I’ve said this before about the previous books, but I want to say it again: I love the mix of role models in the Castle Glower series! We have our typical tomboy, spunky heroine Celie, but instead of making her feminine older sister a nemesis, George emphasizes the things that just because Celie’s sister likes dresses, doesn’t mean she isn’t strong and clever when her family needs her, and even excited to jump into the adventuring at times too. Love that so much!

Weaknesses:

  • Generally the Castle Glower books are able to still surprise me, but I saw the twist in Thursdays with the Crown coming right from the beginning, oh well! There was another twist that I didn’t see coming and loved, but I kept wanting to jump into the story and tell our characters what they were missing ;-).
  • There is a whole lot of deception going on in Thursdays with the Crown and I actually got confused trying to figure out the facts from the lies at times. Therefore, younger readers might struggle a bit and need some assistance figuring things out, but it could make for great logic practice, haha.

Summary:

I seriously can’t recommend this series enough to anyone who enjoys middle grade fantasy! Thursdays with the Crown was exactly what I was hoping that it would be and I’ve actually ordered hardcovers of the first two to match the pretty hardcover of Thursdays with the Crown that I had to buy ;-). I’m going to be recommending Thursdays with the Crown to any and all young readers that I can find, haha, especially because parents would probably have just as much fun reading this aloud!

Anya from On Starships and Dragonwings

Have you read this one? What did you think? Are you excited for it if you haven’t gotten to it yet?
– Anya

 

 Thursdays with the Crown by Jessica Day George

© 2014, Anya. All rights reserved.

Comments

  1. Gah! Why have I not read this series yet? Need to remedy asap. But great review as usual!
    Kel @ Booked til Tuesday recently posted…Updates: Books, Yarn and DoofenshmirtzMy Profile

    • YES WHY NOT?!?!? Do you need help finding a copy of Tuesdays to read? >.> It even matches your blog name :D

      • Because I’m the horrible person who hasn’t checked it out from the library and sat down and read it…*hides in dark corner of shame* I may have to try a reading schedule again, with lots of wiggle room and flexibility for when books don’t work out. Otherwise I just keep reaching for whatever’s at the top of the pile and forget about the older books. :(
        Kel @ Booked til Tuesday recently posted…Fan Art Up! – RussellMy Profile

        • I get you about the older books thing for sure, like literally since I have a pile next to the couch and new arrivals go on top and I keep realizing that this system doesn’t work well, haha

  2. Well, I discovered this blog at a good time, as I’m currently in the middle of reading this book! ~_^

    Amazon had a sale on the Dragon Slippers series earlier this year, and I really enjoyed them. I found Tuesdays at the Castle somewhat disappointing in comparison, but the series has really been picking up, partly thanks to being a bit more action/adventure in this volume. ^_^

    And I agree with Ana that the covers for this entire series are very bright and inviting.
    Rindis recently posted…Continuing ArcheAge Thoughts…My Profile

    • Woot! I assume you finished it by now and I hope you loved it :D Since I quite enjoyed Tuesdays, that makes me even more excited to read the Dragon Slippers series :D

  3. That cover just looks so bright and happy, so I was drawn it to immediately. :) I like these kinds of books because even though they may be lighter than some of my usual reading fare, they still manage to be a great read. Definitely going to keep my eyes out for this one! :D
    Ana @ Read Me Away recently posted…Review 114: Zombies Vs. Unicorns (Various Authors)My Profile

    • I love the covers in these series so much! I just bought all the hardcovers :D These are the perfect middle grade for older readers for just that reasons ;-)

  4. Oh, this is the baby griffin book you were talking about! lol @ wanting to find a middle grade reader. I’ll have to recommend it to my mother who’s a teacher. ;) I have to get my hands on this one too.
    Molly Mortensen recently posted…Percy Jackson, Heroes of Olympus, and Blood of Olympus By Rick RiordanMy Profile

  5. I rarely read middle grade fantasy but I’ll keep this series in mind if I start. It sounds really nice.
    I need to buy a present for my 8 year old niece. And of course I decided it will be a book. Do you think logic in this one would be too complex for her? Do you have any other recomendations?
    Her parents are not really bookworms but I hope I will convert her with the right book. :)
    Dragana recently posted…Kindle Deals for 15. October 2014My Profile

    • Oo, the first book of this series, Tuesdays with the Castle, would be great I think! It doesn’t have quite as confusing of logical arguments ;-)

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