Sunday, June 9, 2013

Series Review: The Spiderwick Chronicles

Series: The Spiderwick Chronicles
Author(s): Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Adventure (Middle-Grade)
Over-all series rating: 4/5
Number of Books: 5
Books in Series: (Goodreads links)
The Field Guide
The Seeing Stone
Lucinda's Secret
The Ironwood Tree
The Wrath of Mulgarath

Plot/Series information (no spoilers):
This is a series about these three kids, Mallory, Jason, and Simon, moving into a kind of creepy old house that's in the family, Aunt Lucinda's house, because their mom thinks it'll be good for them and it'll be financially easier on her.
Right away they kind of start noticing things are a little off, that there's some mystery.

The first books just barely introduce the fey mythology, but it gets more into it in the later books. All of these books are short, but that doesn't seem to take away from the story at all.

Review (no spoilers):
The three main characters in this book - Mallory, Jason, and Simon - are perfect main characters. They're young, even for middle-grade, and they're a little odd. I loved them pretty much right away with how Mallory fences and Simon has his weird pet collection, Jason misses the city and everything from before. And they felt very real and very likeable/relatable.

They're good main characters to watch how this unfolds, because, at first, two of them don't believe their brother about what's going on. They have an overall good relationship, though, which grows and changes through the series.

The world in these books is something I adore. Reading them you also feel like the fey world is ten or twenty times bigger then we're shown, and I really enjoyed that. You meet a lot of different faeries/creatures over the course of the series, learn about them as the kids do.

What I did is I sat down and read this whole series in one day for the Bout of Books read-a-thon. And I thought I'd read them quickly, but they're just so easy to read, and you want to read the next one, so I was surprised at how quickly I read these. And when I finished the last one, I wanted to know what was going to happen next with the kids. I did think, though, that it wrapped up very well.

Overall, I'd recommend this series to any kid who likes fantasy with fey and anyone older who likes it, too. It is middle-grade, keep that in mind, but that doesn't change how likable the characters or how good the world building is.  The main point is I really loved this series. It was cute and fun, not incredibly in-depth or dark, like some things I read, but a nice break from that kind of thing and a fantastic read over all.

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