The Emerald Atlas by John Stephens


I’d heard such good things about this book and it’s been on my radar for a while, so when I was at the grocery store the other night and saw it, I bought it.
The Emerald Atlas is book #1 in The Books of Beginning series (trilogy?). It introduces us to three children – Kate, Michael, and Emma, who have been shuttled around between orphanages for the last ten years but still believe that their parents are alive out there somewhere. They are eventually shipped off to an orphanage in Cambridge Falls, at the request of a Dr. Pym… and there the adventure begins, when they find a mysterious book that throws them 15 years into the past.
Soooo… this was overall a good book, and it was definitely a quick read. Sadly though, it never really grabbed me. While I really liked the concept of super-important magical books, some other things in this book just reminded me too much of other kids series, like The Chronicles of Narnia or Harry Potter. The parts of the book that were really unique were overshadowed by all the similarities to other books. 
The children themselves grow to be likable enough, especially Emma. She was a fierce little girl. I really liked the dwarves, and Dr. Pym, and Gabriel. The baddies were creepy, but I’m not sure I really understand what / who the big baddie is, and his name is just… goofy. Hard to strike fear into the hearts of people with a name like that.
Overall, this was an enjoyable book, but I’m not sure if I’ll go on to read the rest of the books or not. I guess we’ll see, since the second one (The Fire Chronicle) comes out on October 9th.
Sarah Says: 3 stars





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