Harry Potter Series – Book 3: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – By J. K. Rowling

Jared,

I had intended to do a review of The Hammer of Thor this week. Even pre-ordering it! Of course there was a shipping delay and I didn’t get it until yesterday. I’ll publish the review as soon as I’ve finished it. As for today, I give you Prisoner of Azkaban instead. I hadn’t planned to do this one so soon. However, we were able to get a copy of the audio books (Jim Dale, FTW!) and I loaded it onto Lisa’s phone. Of course, she turned it on while we were driving back from vacation and once we started I had to finish it. You’ll probably noticed we’ve been home for weeks. Well there has been so much happening this past month it had to be pushed back until this unexpected opening.

HP3Title: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Series: Harry Potter Series; Book 3
Author: J. K. Rowling
Genre: Fantasy
Audience: Youth/Teen
ROTS Setting: EU, Magic, Higher Magic, Modern/Present Day, Dragons
Synopsis: Harry has survived his first two years at Hogwarts. As the beginning of this third year rapidly approaches he accidentally blows up a relative. Now on the run he discovers Voldemort might be after him again. But this time he’ll use escaped mass-murder Sirius Black.
Recommendation: This is my favorite book in the series. It should be noted that it’s takes the first step away from the Youth audience toward Teen.

– – Spoilers – –

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Harry Potter Series – Book 3: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – By J. K. Rowling

Five Kingdoms Series – Book 4: Death Weavers – By Brandon Mull

Jared,

This review has been pushed back so many times. There’s just so much that takes priority. Plus, this has been out for months already and the next one isn’t expected until the Fall of 2017. Regardless, I wanted to get it written while it was still fresh in my mind. Sadly I’m still having trouble writing this. How much do I reveal? What is or isn’t considered a spoiler when the first book being reviewed is the 4th in the series? The moral dilemma only a book lover can experience.

death-weavers.jpgTitle: Death Weavers
Series: Five Kingdoms; Book 4
Author: Brandon Mull
Genre: Fantasy
Audience: Youth/Teen
ROTS Setting: EU, Higher Magic
Synopsis: Cole is still on the run. His search for Destiny, Mira’s sister, has taken him and his friends to Necronum, one of the five kingdoms in The Outskirts. But Necronum is home to the Weavers, they interact with the dead. Will he survive or will his journey take him to the afterlife?
Recommendation: Go read the other 3 first. They are an easy read, perfect for an intermediate reader/pre-teen/early teen.

– – Mild Spoilers – –

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Five Kingdoms Series – Book 4: Death Weavers – By Brandon Mull

Harry Potter Series – Book 2: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets – J. K. Rowling

Hey Jared,

Figured I might as well finish this one since I had already started it. You can expect a much more ambitious book for next week…if I finish it in time.

HP&tCoSTitle: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Series: Harry Potter Series; Book 2
Author: J. K. Rowling
Genre: Fantasy
Audience: Youth
ROTS Setting: EU, Magic, Higher Magic, Modern/Present Day, Dragons
Synopsis: Harry Potter has finished his first year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Although he’s eager to begin his second year, strange forces begin working against him. When student and ghosts alike come under attack Harry ends up in the middle of events decades in the making.
Recommendation: Read it. Read it again….and again and again. While this book is appropriate for younger readers, later books in the series may not be.

– – Spoilers – –

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Harry Potter Series – Book 2: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets – J. K. Rowling

SPOILER EDITION – Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

HPcursed1.jpg

– – Spoiler Warning – –

This review contains spoilers.
Do not continue without having read the source material first.
Some assembly required. Batteries not included.
By reading this review the reader releases Reading Over The Shoulder from all responsibility and liability for any and all spoilage experienced due to this article.
Viewer discretion is advised.

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SPOILER EDITION – Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Harry Potter Series – Book 1: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone – By J. K. Rowling

Hey Jared,

I was hoping to get this one and the next one done this week but with all the craziness that went on in the latter half of the week I don’t think I’m going to get another one done in time so this will probably be pushed back to my usual Friday time.

hpsorcerersstone

Title: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
Series: Harry Potter Series; Book 1
Author: J. K. Rowling
Genre: Fantasy
Audience: Youth
ROTS Setting: EU, Magic, Higher Magic, Modern/Present Day, Dragons
Synopsis: Harry Potter grew up being treated horribly by the aunt and uncle who raised him. He never knew much about his parents or how famous he is. That is until a letter arrived.
Recommendation: Read it. Read it again….and again and again. While this book is appropriate for younger readers, later books in the series may not be.

– – SPOILERS – –

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Harry Potter Series – Book 1: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone – By J. K. Rowling

The Exodus Trilogy – Book 1: Exodus – By Andreas Christensen

Ok. I’m done with this book. I’m just over 50% of the way and I just can’t do it anymore. Again about 10% of the way in and I knew I wasn’t going to enjoy it but it at least had quotation marks. You deserve a complete analysis of a book, not just part of it. So I soldiered on, but no more. The soldiers have been massacred and those few survivors are scarred and broken.

exodusTitle: Exodus
Series: The Exodus Trilogy; Book 1
Author: Andreas Christensen
Genre: Fiction w/ a touch of bastardized science
Audience: Adult
ROTS Setting: CU, Near Future, Pre-Apocalyptic, Science-less Science Fiction
Synopsis: Plot points disguised as science. Science raped, eviscerated, and then stood up as a warning to logic and reason. (In all seriousness, a rogue planet atomizes Mars before lazily strolling toward Earth. America is able to keep the knowledge secret for years while they build a spaceship to colonize another planet 40 light years away……because that it the safest course of action with the greatest probability of success.)
Recommendation: Don’t. Just don’t.

Spoilers….Hahaha….More like a Public Service Announcement

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The Exodus Trilogy – Book 1: Exodus – By Andreas Christensen

Complete Series Review: The Ranger’s Apprentice Series – By John Flanagan

Hello Robert,

This post goes along with Episode 1 of the ROTS Podcast. I am just going to be going over some of the same ideas and opinions we talked about.

Before we start talking about the actual books and series let me just say that John Flanagan (on the left) is a great guy but he has a similar name to Joe Flanigan (on the right) the actor who plays John Sheppard in Stargate Atlantis. Robert, please note the resemblance.

 

Below is the beautiful list Robert made/found of which countries correspond to their various real world counterparts. Our biggest argument is simply that they are all too similar and all seem to live in isolation. Araluen which pretended to be England seems to simply be lacking any kind of marine war power or trade power. That is until the main characters arrive. In many cased the culture and identity of the nations seems to have also been over simplified.

  • Araluen=England
  • Celtica=Wales
  • Picta=Scotland
  • Hibernia=Ireland
  • Skandia=Scandinavian Countries
  • Gallica=France
  • Teutland=Prussia/Germanic/Germany
  • Arrida=Egypt or other countries near the Arabian Peninsula
  • Toscana=Merged Roman/Italian
  • Iberion=Spain/Portugal
  • Eastern Steppes/Temujai=Mongolian Empire
  • Nihon-Ja=Japan

Magic…. I have only have only big complaint about the magic in John Flanagan’s universe. Where is the rest of it? Honestly the magic was so underdeveloped that it might as well as have been nonexistent. The idea of telepathy and mind control is introduced and used (along with the Kalkara and Wargals)in the first 2 or 3 books and then? Poof. Never hear of it again. Unless you count the Rangers. Who are basically magic with all their abilities of “unseen movement” and archery. Some of the other things COULD be counted as magic but that is mostly because they are unexplained or inexpiable. Please see the ranger ponies and their breeding program for details. Also the saxe knife is too fictitious to not be magical. Not that they aren’t real, historical weapons just they don’t behave like reality.

Let me just wrap up with the characters like a ranger against many foes. Rapid fire!

  • Will. Because of the jumps in timeline his development doesn’t flow well.
  • Alyss. The OTHER girl who ends up getting the guy.
  • Halt. A man larger than his myth until Pauline then degenerated into feelings, nothing but feelings.
  • Horace, so under utilized its not even funny.
  • Cassandra (Evanlyn). Why did she have a crush on Will and then keep crushing on him and there be no real love triangle.
  • Gilan, the coolest character you never get to see the full potential of.

I hope you enjoyed this brief overview of a few of the things I felt robbed by in the Rangers Apprentice. Sadly as I am writing this you will never know what Robert has to say about it. He does say a few words in the podcast but what ever.

Jared

 


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Links

Complete Series Review: The Ranger’s Apprentice Series – By John Flanagan

Alcatraz Series – Book 2: Alcatraz Versus the Scrivener’s Bones – By Brandon Sanderson

So why did I pick this book? Well Deathweavers arrived without me knowing so I never picked it up and it was then promptly returned. So I need to put a hold on it again. I blame the librarians. Of the books left on my shelf…..this one didn’t have any more renews left….and it’s an easy read.

alcatraz2Title: Alcatraz Versus the Scrivener’s Bones
Series: Alcatraz Series
Author: Brandon Sanderson
Genre: Fantasy
Audience: Youth
ROTS Setting: EU, Modern, No Higher Magic
Synopsis: Alcatraz Smedry is back in the second volume of his autobiography. Lies, death, cliffhangers and overzealous undead librarians of questionable morals. Pretty standard stuff really.
Recommendation: Early teens or moderately skilled readers.

– – Spoilers – –

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Alcatraz Series – Book 2: Alcatraz Versus the Scrivener’s Bones – By Brandon Sanderson