Official Review: Dragon Sky by Laurie Woodward

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kandscreeley
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Official Review: Dragon Sky by Laurie Woodward

Post by kandscreeley » 18 Jun 2019, 09:33

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Dragon Sky" by Laurie Woodward.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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The world of Artania - a land made from the art in our world - is in trouble. The Shadow Swine invade the dreams of children, giving them nightmares to make them stop creating the art that makes up their world. The whiteness is growing by the day and, if unchecked, will completely erase Artania.

Bartholomew, Alex, and Gwen are tasked with the protection of Artania. The three middle school children have been twice before and managed to stop the evil plans of the Shadow Swine. Now, it seems that the Shadow Swine have a new secret weapon; Bartholomew, Alex, and Gwen must find the Golden Dragons or all will be lost! Will the three manage to put aside their differences and embrace their fears to save Artania?

Dragon Sky by Laurie Woodward is the third book in the Artania series. The target audience for this book is middle school to early high school age children, but there is something even for adults to enjoy if you don't mind a more simplistic storyline. Though it's the third book in the series, it does stand alone. While it only hints at earlier stories, the book might have a bit deeper meaning if the series is read in order; however, I still enjoyed it without reading the previous books.

I was most impressed with the author's imagination. A land consisting of sculptures, paintings, and models from children in the real world is somewhat unique in literature. The descriptions Ms. Woodward's provides, though, enabled me to picture the land easily. "Painted oak and ash trees sprouted from play dough soil. Construction paper shrubs swished in the breeze."

In addition, since the book is meant for a younger audience, the author tells the story with clean language. When some of the characters' express their frustration, they use unique phrases instead of cussing. For example, at one point, Bartholomew wonders, "...what the washcloths he was thinking."

The book is fast-paced, but the author takes her time setting up the story. This insured the reader would know the characters more thoroughly, helping to empathize with their plights. At the same time, the author does not allow the reader to get bored. With younger readers, this is especially important.

Two other things make the book even more impressive. First, even though the book is part of a continuing series, this particular arc is wrapped up. Ms. Woodward doesn't end on a cliffhanger, but she uses your love of the world and characters to keep you returning; it was quite admirable. Second, the plot includes a lesson that children (probably adults, too) would do well to learn early. That alone makes me want to recommend this book.

I wish my review ended there. Unfortunately, the book needs some help on the editing front. I found ten errors rather quickly within the story. Most of these consisted of missing words, and they were throughout the book. There was also the occasional spacing issue or missing apostrophe. All of the errors would quickly be taken care of by a proofreader, but they were somewhat distracting.

I am highly impressed with Dragon Sky and rate it 3 out of 4 stars only due to the lack of professional editing. I recommend it to any adult with middle school or early high school age children. It could even be a series that parents read aloud to their elementary school children. Though the stories are entirely distinct, this reminds me of Harry Potter because the series could be enjoyed by adults and children alike; the imagination of both authors leads to an enjoyable adventure series in both cases. I can't wait to see what becomes of Alex, Bartholomew, and Gwen (as well as Artania) in the future.

******
Dragon Sky
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Post by hannahbhill33 » 19 Jun 2019, 13:25

I truly enjoyed reading your review! Knowing the lack of editing being distracting is really disappointing, as it sounds like a really enjoyable read. I'm very intrigued with the use of phrases instead of cussing, I think that is always a great thing to see and read in a book. Other than that the story sounds great and I would like to try to give it a read after seeing your review.

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Post by kandscreeley » 19 Jun 2019, 13:51

hannahbhill33 wrote:
19 Jun 2019, 13:25
I truly enjoyed reading your review! Knowing the lack of editing being distracting is really disappointing, as it sounds like a really enjoyable read. I'm very intrigued with the use of phrases instead of cussing, I think that is always a great thing to see and read in a book. Other than that the story sounds great and I would like to try to give it a read after seeing your review.
It really was an interesting story. I loved the world of Artania and am looking forward to seeing what happens with it in the future. Thanks so much for your comment.
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Post by Nisha Ward » 19 Jun 2019, 16:21

Artania sounds amazing. I'd rather start from the first book, though, if only to prolong my stay there and work my way towards this one. The search for the Golden Dragons sounds awesome and I do so enjoy books like these, even if I'm out of the age range now.
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Post by LV2R » 19 Jun 2019, 20:15

This story has a bit of fantasy with dragons and plenty about art and imagination. It does sound like a good book that children and adults alike would like to read. I like the replacement of curse words to be more imaginative and funny.

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Post by Meg98 » 19 Jun 2019, 22:50

This sounds like a unique and promising story, but could probably do with another round of editing. It is a shame, as it can really detract from a good read. Thank you for your honest review. Great job!
Oh love, never be afraid to fly :wink2:

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Post by kandscreeley » 20 Jun 2019, 07:32

Nisha Ward wrote:
19 Jun 2019, 16:21
Artania sounds amazing. I'd rather start from the first book, though, if only to prolong my stay there and work my way towards this one. The search for the Golden Dragons sounds awesome and I do so enjoy books like these, even if I'm out of the age range now.
I enjoyed it, and I'm definitely not the target audience. Starting at the first book would make this one that much more special. I hope you read it and enjoy! Thanks.
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Post by kandscreeley » 20 Jun 2019, 07:33

LV2R wrote:
19 Jun 2019, 20:15
This story has a bit of fantasy with dragons and plenty about art and imagination. It does sound like a good book that children and adults alike would like to read. I like the replacement of curse words to be more imaginative and funny.
There is definitely an abundance of imagination. I think it would teach children that imagination is okay; art is okay. The cuss words were hilarious. Thanks so much!
Good books, like good friends, are few and chosen; the more select, the more enjoyable.
-Louisa May Alcott
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Post by kandscreeley » 20 Jun 2019, 07:35

Meg98 wrote:
19 Jun 2019, 22:50
This sounds like a unique and promising story, but could probably do with another round of editing. It is a shame, as it can really detract from a good read. Thank you for your honest review. Great job!
Editing is very important to a story. This one was good enough that I hope people will overlook it and read it anyway. Thanks!
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Post by kdstrack » 20 Jun 2019, 11:43

I love stories that can be described as unique and creative. Who knew 'washcloth' could be a curse word? Your review is very persuasive. This looks amazing. Thanks so much for the recommendation!

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Post by kandscreeley » 20 Jun 2019, 11:54

kdstrack wrote:
20 Jun 2019, 11:43
I love stories that can be described as unique and creative. Who knew 'washcloth' could be a curse word? Your review is very persuasive. This looks amazing. Thanks so much for the recommendation!
There's more unique cuss words where that one came from! It's highly enjoyable. Thanks for your comment.
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Post by Letora » 21 Jun 2019, 06:36

I love the book cover! It caught my attention right away as I was looking through new reviews. This sounds like it would have been the perfect book for me growing up. I'd love a chance to read it. Thank you for reviewing!
"Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, it's a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope." - Dr. Seuss

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Post by kandscreeley » 21 Jun 2019, 06:52

Letora wrote:
21 Jun 2019, 06:36
I love the book cover! It caught my attention right away as I was looking through new reviews. This sounds like it would have been the perfect book for me growing up. I'd love a chance to read it. Thank you for reviewing!
I think you'd like it. It was gripping. Thanks so much for your comment.
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Post by Prisallen » 21 Jun 2019, 10:57

I agree this sounds like a wonderful book for both children and adults. As I love descriptive, imaginative stories, I will have to take a look at this one. Thank you for a great review!
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Post by Cecilia_L » 21 Jun 2019, 12:03

In addition, since the book is meant for a younger audience, the author tells the story with clean language. When some of the characters' express their frustration, they use unique phrases instead of cussing. For example, at one point, Bartholomew wonders, "...what the washcloths he was thinking."
I love this and wish more authors would implement such creativity when it comes to language. I can just hear kids repeating this one. :lol2:

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