Monday, March 11, 2013

Review of Lizzy Speare and the Cursed Tomb, by Ally Malinenko


Title: Lizzy Speare and the Cursed Tomb
Series:  Lizzy Speare Book 1 

Author: Ally Malinenko
Publisher: Antenna Books
Release Date: September 12, 2012
Source: Author
Purchase: Amazon


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Book Description: MEET LIZZY SPEARE…

…a normal twelve year old girl with a talent for writing, who has a very not normal family secret. And when Lizzy’s father vanishes, that secret will change her life in ways unimagined. (Spoiler Alert! It turns out that Lizzy, or Elizabeth S. Speare, is the last living descendant of William Shakespeare. Shhh! Don’t tell anybody!)

Then Lizzy and her best friend Sammy are kidnapped, awakening in the faraway land of Manhattan. Their host is Jonathan Muse, whose job is to protect Lizzy from becoming the latest victim in a family feud nearly five hundred years old. Could that be why the mysterious, eye patch-wearing Dmitri Marlowe is after her? (Spoiler Alert 2—he’s the last living descendant of Christopher Marlowe, a friend and rival of Shakespeare’s. But keep it to yourself!) Is Marlowe after Lizzy’s family fortune rumored to be kept in Shakespeare’s tomb? Does he seek artistic immortality? Or Revenge (with a capital R) for a death long, long ago?

In a dangerous game of cat-and-mouse, Lizzy and Sammy are thrust into the realm of the mythical and fantastic—from satyrs and Cyclopses to Middle Eastern cab drivers and Brooklyn hipsters—in what is truly “an improbable fiction” as the Bard himself once wrote.

Late last year, I started yearning for a Harry Potter type of adventure. It had been a while since I sat down and immersed myself into a world of young kids finding out that they are not ordinary, and run around with all kinds of creatures on a crazy quest. So when the author sent me an inquiry on whether I would want to review her novel, and I read the synopsis, I jumped all over 'Lizzy Speare and the Cursed Tomb'. 


As a side note I thank the author for her immense patience, as I ended up taking a longer time to pick this book up than I initially anticipated.

From the moment that I began this story, I knew I had made the perfect choice! 'Lizzy Speare and the Cursed Tomb' is a story about a young girl that gets caught up in a world filled with mysterious creatures, treacherous villains and family secrets.

This story was so action packed, I was constantly on the edge of my seat.  Though the big reveal of who Lizzy really is was easily guessed, I was never quite sure if I had the story straight, if the villain could be redeemed, or if Lizzy's ally was the good guy that he made himself out to be. 

There were plenty of twists and turns, and the focus on Shakespeare, his life and his plays, I found, lent this story a sense of originality that was both refreshing and intriguing.

A really fun story for the young, and the young at heart and a very promising beginning to what appears to be an unforgettable and  magical series!



About the Author: Ally Malinenko, a self-proclaimed Bardolator, took her first pilgrimage to Stratford-Upon-Avon in 2009 and hasn’t been the same since. Lizzy Speare and the Cursed Tomb is her first children's book. Her poetry book, The Wanting Bone, was published by Six Gallery Press. She blogs at allymalinenko.com. Ally lives in Brooklyn with her husband. Connect with the Author: Website/ Twitter/ Goodreads

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