Thursday, September 21, 2017

Happy Hobbit Day!

Woot! Happy Hobbit Day, people!

We like Tolkien just a little bit around here.

This time of year, I always return to this webpage which has every recipe you could ever want to make for your Hobbit Day celebrations.

For some cultural diversity, you can also check out this page which catalogs 67 different editions of The Hobbit from around the world - in 21 different languages.

This year is a special Hobbit Day because yesterday (September 21, 2017) was the 80th anniversary of The Hobbit book itself. 

So party hard, my friends, and may the hair on your toes never fall out.

"If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world." - Thorin Oakenshield to Bilbo Baggins, The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Journey from Skioria by Kandi J. Wyatt

Title: Journey from Skioria
Author: Kandi J. Wyatt
Publication Date: September 5 2017
Number of Pages: 140
Buy: Amazon

Enter Goodreads giveaway until September 12

What Goodreads has to say:

Tania is lost, shipwrecked on an unfamiliar shore. With no friends or family, the nine-year-old girl must make her way through the realm of the woodland people to a town she's never heard of. With unexpected allies from the forest, Tania departs on a wild adventure where storms rage and the forces of nature do their very best to end her journey before it has truly begun.

In a land full of magic and evil forces, can one young girl make it home alive?

Lord of the Rings meets Narnia in this standalone middle grade fantasy by author Kandi J Wyatt.

What I have to say:

This was a cute middle grade story with fun, believable characters in an imaginative world. For my tastes, it could have used a bit more action, but as it is, Journey from Skioria is an enjoyable, refreshing little adventure.

The world of Skioria is rich and well-developed: peopled by different races reminiscent of Hobbits and pixies. Skioria itself is a bit like a mix of Lothlorien, Hobbiton, and Narnia - so basically an awesome place to live in. 

Sadly, Tania needs to get back to her family, and since she's only nine, we can't really blame her for that. Speaking of which, I thought Tania seemed very believable as a nine-year-old human girl. It definitely wasn't one of those stories where you have to suspend your disbelief as a pre-teen ends up doing stuff a seasoned ninja would have trouble accomplishing.

On that subject, however, I would have appreciated a little more action. Even in The Lord of the Rings series, days of hiking cross country is just not all that exciting to read about. 

To her credit, author Kandi J. Wyatt does throw in lots of fun stuff like family secrets, reveals, myths, and delectable scenery. But even with all that, I can only take so much of people hiking towards civilization. 

Luckily, the book is a fairly quick read, so it didn't really have time to bore me. I just think the story would have grabbed me more if the most exciting thing that happened in it wasn't a run in with some unwieldy sheep.

Then again, if anything did grab me in this book, it was the sweetness of Tania's friends and the richness of the world Wyatt has created. That's no small feat, and if the story sometimes succumbs to some Tolkien-esque countryside rambling, I think there are worse things in life.


(Also, anytime an author incorporates pizza into their story, I feel compelled to recognize it, since pizza is probably second only to books as the most important thing in the universe; and bringing pizza into a fantasy or sci-fi novel takes a certain degree of creativity. There was pizza in this story, so well done.)

Until tomorrow.