Monday, January 7, 2013

"Just around the corner lurks the beginning of your story."

Of Giants and Ice 

Summary from Goodreads: 

 This first installment of The Ever Afters series reimagines classic fairy tale characters in a modern context, merging familiar fantasy with the everyday realities of middle-grade existence.When Rory realizes fairy tales are the real deal at Ever After School, she embarks on a classic quest to fulfill her destiny.  Rory Landon has spent her whole life being known as the daughter of a famous movie star mom and director dad. So when she begins a new after-school program and no one knows who her family is, Rory realizes something is different. And after she ends up fighting a fire-breathing dragon on her first day, she realizes the situation is more unusual than she could have imagined. It turns out the only fame that matters at Ever After School is the kind of fame earned from stories Rory thought were fictional. But as Rory soon learns, fairy tales are very real—and she is destined to star in one of her own.

The first part of Giants and Ice is getting to know Rory and her family and an introduction to the Ever After School (EAS).  Rory is in the sixth grade, her parents are divorced and both her parents are movie stars.  Being from famous parents, she has always felt like she never really had true friends plus it's hard to get to know anyone when your moving from place to place all the time.  The Ever After School (EAS) is an after school program designed to assist the students with their "tales."  An interesting concept where everyone is a character in a fairy tale and they are waiting for their tale to begin.  This part of the story kinda got bogged down for me.  Rory seems to worry a lot, worries about making friends, having her own tale, will she be able to complete it and there is quite a bit of bickering between her and Chase.  There's one big action scene at the beginning and even some mysterious dreams that Rory doesn't seem to understand but more alluding to what is to come.
The second part of the story is where things get imaginative and creative, Rory's friend Lena is given a tale.  Not just any tale, but Jack and the Beanstalk and she chooses Rory and Chase to be her companions.  This is where all the action happens and Rory begins to grow as a character.  There are some great scenes between Rory and Chase and I hope they will continue to be prominent in the second book in the series. I really like the balance of Rory who has a strong desire to do well, and Chase who can be infuriating, with the brainy Lena who is very smart but also makes mistakes as well.   Most of all, I really enjoyed the twists with the fairy tale characters, the giants were certainly different then what I recall but quite amusing.   4/5 story for me.  

Review copy provided by authors agent and won as a giveaway from  A big thank you to both. 

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