Just Hatched is a feature where I share my first impressions of a book after the first chapter. Check out the announcement post for more information.
Time Stoppers by Carrie Jones is a middle-grade fantasy that delivers plenty of strong, likable characters and action galore in a world where nothing … and no one …. is what they initially seem to be. Like a good magician, Jones reveals the layers of her fantasy world gradually, peeling back “reality” to show the world that most mundane humans never know exists. As in the Percy Jackson series, our heroes are also far more than first meets the eye. It’s a recipe for the sort of hero tale that young fans of fantasy adventure will embrace whole heartedly, with a diversity of characters sure to inspire a variety of readers.
Note: I received an advanced copy of TIME STOPPERS from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.
Time Stoppers by Carrie Jones
Published by Bloomsbury on May 3, 2016
Genres: Fantasy, MG
Page Length: 384 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
Amazon - IndieBound - Book Depository - Barnes & Noble - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog
Annie Nobody thought she was, well, nobody, living in a nowhere town where nothing goes her way. Day 1 at her newest foster home proves to be dreadful, too... and things get even worse when she's chased by something big and scary that definitely wants to eat her.
Luckily for Annie, not everything is what it seems, and she gets swept up-literally-by a sassy dwarf on a hovercraft snowmobile and taken to Aurora, a hidden, magical town on the coast of Maine. There, she finds a new best friend in Jamie Hephastion Alexander--who thought he was a normal kid (but just might be a troll)-and Annie discovers that she's not exactly who she thought she was, either. She's a Time Stopper, meant to protect the enchanted.
Together, Annie and Jamie discover a whole new world of magic, power, and an incredible cast of creatures and characters. But where there's great power, there are also those who want to misuse it, and Aurora is under siege. It's up to the kids to protect their new home, even if it means diving headfirst into magical danger.
How is the writing style?
The writing style and vocabulary are very appropriate for middle-grade readers. Chapters are short and encapsulate each section of the story from one of the main characters’ points of view. There’s plenty of action to keep readers engaged, but the pacing is solid. Unlike other authors in this genre, Jones takes her time in revealing the truth behind the veil of mundane reality, providing a touch of suspense in addition to the hero’s adventure tale.
General tone of the beginning
The book starts out a touch grim with the protagonists being children shuffled around in the foster care system and overseen by adults who are quite cruel. Jones paints with a broad brush here, and I think even young readers will know that the main characters will shortly escape, as happens in any good fairy tale.
Setting, genre, etc?
The story takes place in an alternate reality world where magic is real and secret locations are hidden just out of mundane sight. This would be a great book for younger siblings of Harry Potter and Percy Jackson fans.
- My current read, leave me alone! (~5 stars)
- Reading in the near future *hides from TBR pile glare* (~4 stars)
- Hoping to get back to eventually (~3 stars)
- Probably not getting back to but someone else will like it (~2 stars)
- Don’t really want to push this copy on anyone else (~1 star)
I’ve read the first 125 pages and am enjoying it, but this is definitely written for middle-grade readers. I would probably enjoy reading it to a favorite child, but it does not have enough sophistication and depth to keep my attention as an adult. There are too many books to read now that I have the hammock unpacked and out on the deck!!
Have you read this one yet? Are you inclined to check it out?
Time Stoppers by Carrie Jones
© 2016, Barbara. All rights reserved.