Saturday, April 14, 2012

Spring Reading Affair: Stardust Saturday Charlie Bone and another Rant

Happy Saturday peaches!

It's been a fantastic week, and I can't believe it's already the weekend! Mr. J and I only have about 2 more weeks until our big move. I'm hoping that the fantastic adventure of moving won't interrupt posting too much. My plan is to not miss a day and have the schedule continue as usual for that week.

Here's to hoping!

Oh... and get ready for another rant. This one will be about Harry Potter fans. So beware.

Now, Auggie-Talk is happy to present another...

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REVIEW

Title: Midnight for Charlie Bone
Author: Jenny Nimmo
Genre: Middlegrade Fantasy
Published: March 1, 2003
Pages: 416

A magical fantasy that is fast-paced and easy-to-read. Charlie Bone has a special gift- he can hear people in photographs talking.

The fabulous powers of the Red King were passed down through his descendants, after turning up quite unexpectedly, in someone who had no idea where they came from. This is what happened to Charlie Bone, and to some of the children he met behind the grim, gray walls of Bloor's Academy.

Charlie Bone has discovered an unusual gift-he can hear people in photographs talking! His scheming aunts decide to send him to Bloor Academy, a school for genius's where he uses his gifts to discover the truth despite all the dangers that lie ahead.


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Auggie-Talk Quill Rating
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5/5
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This book was a joy to read! It was fun and fabulously entertaining full of mystery and youthful shenanigans. It was also a bit creepy, now that I think of it. But the element of creep is never a downside for me! 

Charlie is a young boy living with his mother in his Grandmother's house (along with all of his Grandmother's siblings). He's a rather normal boy until he discovers that he can HEAR photographs. That's right. They talk, and Charlie can hear them!

After discovering his abilities Charlie's Grandmother sends him off to Bloor Academy a school for "gifted" children where Charlie realizes that he's not the only one with peculiar powers.

In all of this there's also a missing girl, a secret box, and a shady aunts that seem to have more on their minds than taking perfectly good care of their gifted nephew.

This book is fantastic for kids.  Heck, I'm 25 and I enjoyed this book so it's really for anyone who wants a light and fun read. Obviously there is no seriously complex writing style, but that's not a downside. As far as middlegrade books go, this ones a winner!

What you're going to have to realize, my ducks, is that this rating is not based on the complexity of the book... because it is after all a middlegrade read.

I'm rating it a 5/5 for its creativity and fun. This is a fantastic adventure for a youth and all of the adults that I've seen giving the book bad ratings because it's not "deep" enough... I must say that you need to reevaluate your library list. If you're looking for 'deep' and 'thought provoking' books my advice to you would be to stay out of the Juvenile Fiction section.

There are some wonderful Middlegrade books that can really get your mental cogs a'turnin' but what you're going to find in most Juvenile fiction is a fun, adventurous story, with a blaring moral or an obvious meaning that doesn't take hours of philosophizing to figure out. Enjoy them for that and for what they are and don't rate them poorly because they don't meat your standards of intellect.

Okay now that Rant #1 is out of the way. Here's the rant that I actually wanted to rant about....


Harry Potter Fans

Yikes! Okay. No one come after me with pitch forks and torches. I'm a Potter fan myself. I was in 6th grade when the first book came out. My home-room English teacher read it to us for a week or so before school let out for the summer. She didn't finish it and I HAD to know what happened so I got my mom to drive me to our local book seller and I bought it for myself.

Love at first read. 

Harry Potter is my childhood. That being said, I never stayed up and went to the midnight openings of the movies, I was never first in line to get the newest book (I always reserved my book ahead of time and went the next day when the zooish crowd had dispersed.) I never dressed up or participated in Potter Trivia games.  I was very content to be a quiet Harry Potter fan.

Now, I have no problem with Harry Potter fans that dress up, talk about HP 24/7, know every spell in the book, and have read all of the books at least 5 times. 

I'm actually IMPRESSED by that.

My issue is when I start hearing this....

"This author SO stole that idea from Harry Potter!" 

"That author just borrowed that from J.K. Rowling!"

"That author is trying too hard to write like J.K Rowling!"

What people don't seem to realize is that Harry Potter is not a 'never before heard of' story. Just like many stories before it, it's just a new twist on an already presented idea.

Not all books about kids with special abilities that are sent to a special boarding school are modeled after Harry Potter. To say that, or even assume it, is rather on the absurd side.

Did it ever cross your minds that perhaps J.K. Rolwing might have used inspiration from other books to create her beautiful Potter world?

Diana Wynne Jones was an author of NUMEROUS books that had Harry Potter elements in them. Many of you might not have even read her books so I should point out something very interesting to you. Diana Wynne Jones wrote all of those books BEFORE Harry Potter. SURPRISE!
The school of witchcraft and wizardry and the young boy that was sent there (and the evil he had to conquer)for example appeared in Diana Wynne Jones books before Harry Potter was even an idea.

I don't go around saying that every book I read with this element is stealing from Diana Wynne Jones, and frankly I'm getting quite tired of hearing others complaining about ideas being stolen from J.K Rowling.

Ms. Rowling did not INVENT the idea of a wizarding school, or even a school for 'gifted' children. She did not invent the idea of bad-vs.-evil, and she didn't invent magic. 


Her books were an incredible and compelling story full of imagination. She is an extremely talented author with AMAZING ideas but she is not the reason every other Author in the world writes about witches and wizards. 

What started this rant was reading reviews of Charlie Bone and seeing so many people rate it low because it was too "Harry Potterish". Well for goodness sake! Maybe I think that "Harry Potter" is too "Diana Wynne Jonesish"! (I don't, but I'm trying to make a point here, people.)

Every author has an inspiration and there are TOO MANY books out there for there not to be crossing.  Again, as I said before, Ms. Jones mentions many elements found in Harry Potter in her own books (many of which were published in the 70's). That doesn't mean Rowling ripped off a Jones story.

Here's a fantastic Wiki link that you SHOULD (please for the love of God) read if you believe that Rowlings ideas are being stolen right and left by new authors. Maybe it will put into perspective for you how many books (before her own) have similar ideas.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_Potter_influences_and_analogues

Anyhoodle! Plenty of that... I've worn myself out.

Moving on!


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Challenge Updates
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I've created a challenge, lovelies! 

Auggie-Talk's 2012 Heavenly Challenge

Prizes? YES!



Updates







7/24 books









2/20 books








3/24 books







2/15 books







1/10 books



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Week In Review
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❀ Next Week
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I'm very happy about next week!

As usual there will be an IMM tomorrow, Trilogy Tuesday, Featured Friday, and then another Stardust Saturday.

On Trilogy Tuesday I will also be hosting "RANSOM" book #2 from R.K. Ryals.

Also I will be introducing my very own challenge! I'm really looking forward to putting this together and offering it to all of you. 


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New Giveaway
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Starting Monday there will be another WONDERFUL giveaway! The prizes are fantastic and there will be more than one winner!

The Giveaway is for "Letters From the Ledge" by Lynda Meyers.  There will also be posters and bookmarks available.

This was an incredible book that truly moved me and I believe it has the power to stir anyone who reads it. I hope that you'll all decide to take part in this fantastic story and enter to win your very own copy! 
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Giveaways

NOTICE: The Sookie Stackhouse Giveaway ends  TOMORROW! 

Just to remind everyone, I have two great giveaways going on right now. If you'll just click the little linkies, they'll send you to the appropriate page. Good Luck!


 Ends May 1st
and 
Ends April 15th
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Well loves, that's all for this weeks STARDUST SATURDAY.

Hope to be seeing you back here this week for all the new reviews and Giveaways! 

Until Next Blog, 

Read on! 

~A.

1 comment:

  1. Midnight For Charlie Bone was the book that actually got me interested in fantasy, as I was not allowed to read Harry Potter until later in my childhood. I'm glad that you enjoyed it!

    ReplyDelete

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