Customer Reviews for

Nicholas St. North and the Battle of the Nightmare King (The Guardians Series #1)

Average Rating 4.5
( 35 )
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

7 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

Magical and Perfect for the Holiday Season

Nicholas St. North and the Nightmare King is a fun and new explanation about the origins of Santa Claus. It has something for everyone, both those who celebrate Christmas, and those who do not. There’s fighting, action, magic, invention, and some captivating description...
Nicholas St. North and the Nightmare King is a fun and new explanation about the origins of Santa Claus. It has something for everyone, both those who celebrate Christmas, and those who do not. There’s fighting, action, magic, invention, and some captivating descriptions about light and dark and good and bad.

The purity and innocence that comes with childhood really plays an important role in this swashbuckling adventure. North, the Santa Claus figure, is dashing and roguish and nothing like the Santa we think of now, but children will love to see him in this new light. Everything about the story is special and holds this sense of enchantment that will charm even the most reluctant readers.

While the story focuses on Santa Claus, it doesn’t go into any sort of religious background. Instead, Nicholas St. North and the Battle of the Nightmare King, taps into the magic that comes with the holiday season and the childhood wonderment that this time of the year invokes. It’s a dreamlike story that will delight readers and enchant them with a new way of thinking of their dear Santa Claus.

posted by Nikkayme on January 5, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

Solid characters, great imagination... may not be what you expected

Let me start by saying that, like many others, my first intoduction to this series was rough Rise of the Guardians. I came into this knowing in general what to expect.

So having now read it, let me tell you what you can expect - and not expect.

The characters, as in ...
Let me start by saying that, like many others, my first intoduction to this series was rough Rise of the Guardians. I came into this knowing in general what to expect.

So having now read it, let me tell you what you can expect - and not expect.

The characters, as in the movie, are the strongest part of this book. The only one you'll be recognizing is North - this is his book - but the cast that supports him are just as engaging and entertaining.

The plot is pretty basic. That shouldn't come as much of a surprise. But what it lacks in great plotting, it makes up for in sheer imagination and wonder as described in setting and lore. The places you read of and things the characters do all retain that same sense of dreamlike amazement you might expect from this series.

If there's a real weakness to be had, it's in writing. This is obviously a children's book - you can't even get away with callin it YA. Even with that in mind, the author takes a very "tell don't show" approach. Everything is told very matter of factly, with nothing really left to the imagination. Character feelings are told straight up. And perhaps worse, many times dialogue is completely thrown aside for simply telling what the conversation was about.

Go in expecting the right thing, and you won't be disappointed. Or better yet, get this for your kids. Just don't expect too much feom it.

posted by Anonymous on January 20, 2013

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  • Posted January 5, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Magical and Perfect for the Holiday Season

    Nicholas St. North and the Nightmare King is a fun and new explanation about the origins of Santa Claus. It has something for everyone, both those who celebrate Christmas, and those who do not. There’s fighting, action, magic, invention, and some captivating descriptions about light and dark and good and bad.

    The purity and innocence that comes with childhood really plays an important role in this swashbuckling adventure. North, the Santa Claus figure, is dashing and roguish and nothing like the Santa we think of now, but children will love to see him in this new light. Everything about the story is special and holds this sense of enchantment that will charm even the most reluctant readers.

    While the story focuses on Santa Claus, it doesn’t go into any sort of religious background. Instead, Nicholas St. North and the Battle of the Nightmare King, taps into the magic that comes with the holiday season and the childhood wonderment that this time of the year invokes. It’s a dreamlike story that will delight readers and enchant them with a new way of thinking of their dear Santa Claus.

    7 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 8, 2012

    THE BEST BEDTIME STORY EVER

    My all-time favourite kids series of all. It is certainly the Guardian of Childhood.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2012

    Awesome book. If anyone loves different spins on old classics as

    Awesome book. If anyone loves different spins on old classics as we are seeing in Once Upon a Time and in Wicked, they will love this take on childhood heroes.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2013

    Solid characters, great imagination... may not be what you expected

    Let me start by saying that, like many others, my first intoduction to this series was rough Rise of the Guardians. I came into this knowing in general what to expect.

    So having now read it, let me tell you what you can expect - and not expect.

    The characters, as in the movie, are the strongest part of this book. The only one you'll be recognizing is North - this is his book - but the cast that supports him are just as engaging and entertaining.

    The plot is pretty basic. That shouldn't come as much of a surprise. But what it lacks in great plotting, it makes up for in sheer imagination and wonder as described in setting and lore. The places you read of and things the characters do all retain that same sense of dreamlike amazement you might expect from this series.

    If there's a real weakness to be had, it's in writing. This is obviously a children's book - you can't even get away with callin it YA. Even with that in mind, the author takes a very "tell don't show" approach. Everything is told very matter of factly, with nothing really left to the imagination. Character feelings are told straight up. And perhaps worse, many times dialogue is completely thrown aside for simply telling what the conversation was about.

    Go in expecting the right thing, and you won't be disappointed. Or better yet, get this for your kids. Just don't expect too much feom it.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 13, 2013

    I think this book is awesome.

    This book is of the best I ever read, and I have read alot of books.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 21, 2012

    I love this book. I love it very much. It captivated my imaginat

    I love this book. I love it very much. It captivated my imagination and hid it in the forests of Santoff Claussen with the bear and the Spirit of The Forest and the Great Reindeer too. It is dreaming sweet dreams with Kathrine and Nightlight. My imagination is happy as am I. This book is marvelous. To those that say otherwise I am sorry that you have no imagination

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 25, 2012

    Nicholas st. North

    This is a very good book for children and is a good book for reading around christmas time

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 23, 2012

    Awesomme books!

    These series of books are about the characters who are most important to our childhood! This book focuses on who is Santa Claus and how did he come to be and how does he "protect" us! GREAT BOOK(S)!!!!!!

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2013

    Awesome

    Luv it

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2013

    So cil SO SO COOL!!!!!

    Joyce did an amazing job. I really felt I was in the story!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 1, 2013

    Nsn

    Weird 2 no tht some dude that pepl cal "santa claus" was once a criminal.

    2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 26, 2013

    I picked up this book as a part of the Magnificently Magic Read-

    I picked up this book as a part of the Magnificently Magic Read-A-Thon* both because it was a book I had been wanting to read and because of how perfectly it fit the criteria. Being as it weighs in at 228 pages and is assuredly lower middle grade might have had something to do with choosing it.

    Nicholas St. North and the Battle of the Nightmare King is the first book in The Guardians series. It takes place after The Man in the Moon, which is the first book in the picture book companion series, The Guardians of Childhood, also written by William Joyce. (It's a quick read, and I recommend that you read it first.) The Nightmare King, Pitch, escapes his imprisonment after the inadvertent actions of a moonbeam releases an elfish boy made of light encased in a dagger in Pitch's heart. This sets of a chain of events that is the focus of this.

    I'm not sure if I've ever said this on the blog, but I have a special place in my heart for middle grade novels. There is rarely any gore, minimal depressive events (before you say anything, I believe Harry Potter 5-7 is YA), and a lovely, magical sense of fun whether there is literal magic or not. Nicholas St. North gives us just that. Joyce & Geringer brilliantly draw the reader into the story, while setting up the world in the novel for the entire series. Where the picture book, The Man in the Moon introduced the reader to Mim, AKA Tsar Lunar, in this novel we meet Nicholas St. North (Santa, perhaps?), Ombric the Wizard, and Katherine, a little foundling girl in Ombric's care. Nightlight, a character and friend of Mim's in The Man in the Moon, makes a reappearance in this novel. The first half of the story is mostly devoted to world-building (which is rich), but the action is exciting once it comes.

    This would be a fantastic story for fans of fairy tales or reimaginings, and I highly recommend this book for reluctant readers. There are illustrations scattered throughout the book, and the pacing is gripping and fast enough to hold on to those frustratingly short attention spans. There is also the film adaptation, The Rise of the Guardians, that can be used as a tool to bring readers to Nicholas St. North and the Battle of the Nightmare King and vice versa.

    3.5 Stars

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2014

    Wonderful

    I found this book on a bus. A girl on my schoolbus was reading the second book. I asked her what she was reading and she showed me the cover. I saw the author was William Joyce so I wrote that name in Sharpie on my arm. When I got home I looked up his name on my nook. Then I added every book in the Guardians series to my wishlist. I checked the whole series from the library. On my birthday I bought the series. These books are utterly magical and wonderful. If you love a book with a great story and funny bits of humor then this book is for you.
    -ichigo tachikawa

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2012

    Beautiful!

    This is a book that I can read over and over and never get tired of, it's written beautifully and I love I love books in which you can't help but root for the bad guy (North). Also this is a story about a young man who as no memory of the family he used to have who later finds himself through Ombric (a wise - yet loony wizard) and Katherine (a young orphan girl raised by Ombric), then realizing that he is not a theif or a ruffian, but a hero!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 21, 2014

    What a fantastic story! My daughter is a 9 year old "reluct

    What a fantastic story! My daughter is a 9 year old "reluctant reader" who wanted no part of this book until
    she sat down and started reading it. From the very first chapter she fell in love with it and I think would have
    very well read it from cover to cover if I would have let her go without sleeping! This is a terrific story, full of 
    adventure and action, magic and mystery and my child can't put it down! We've already got the next two
    books lined up waiting to read! What a delightful feeling it is to have her excited and anxious to read what happens
    next! Well done Mr. Joyce! Thanks for the adventure!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 17, 2014

    readers story part two

    Jack looked at Tracy with the most dazzling eyes she had ever seen. He said, "Are you lost?" Tracy said, "Well...It's...um...yeah...," in a tiny voice. Suddenly a growl emerged from the blanket of white that was now descending upon her and Jack. She jumped. Another growl emerged. Then another and and another as wolves appeared out of nowhere. But these wolves were like no other. They were black as night, and if Tracy looked hard enough, she would see that they were made of a fine sand. Jack stepped in front of Tracy and said in a commanding voice, "Don't move." Tracy squeaked, "What...are those?" "Nightmares." "What?!" "Pitch must be here." "Who's Pitch?!?" "He must be trying another scheme." "YOU'RE NOT MAKING ANY SENSE!!!!" Suddenly, one of the night-wolves growled. "Shhhh." said Jack. Then, from out of the white nothingness surounding them and the wolves, a larger, stronger wolf, the alpha male, came charging out of its hiding spot, ran towards Tracy like a man possessed, and bit Tracy soundly on the arm! Tracy let out an ear-piercing scream and threw the wolf off her arm. Cluthing her wound, she noticed with horror that the fine sand that made up the wolves was now seeping into her bloodstream. Suddenly, the growls of the wolves seemed distant. She swayed and fell onto the powdered snow. She heard Jack calling to her- "Are you ok?!"- but his voice seemed faint and far away. Her eyelids then just got too heavy to keep open, and she let herself slip into unconciousness.
    ------------------
    Jack saw Tracy fall to the ground. He tried to call her, but he didn't know her name. As she slipped into unconciousness, Jack knew she was in serious danger. He picked her up and called to the wind, saying, "Wind, take me to the Pole!" A sudden gust of wind blew by, carrying Jack and Tracy away from the dangerous wolves. Soon, the North Pole came into view. Jack rushed inside, where North was finishing up designs for a snow-themed train set. Jack ran up to the big, jolly Guardian and said, "We have a big problem."

    Part three will be at E. Aster Bunnymund by William Joyce. If you want to read part one, that is at Rise of the Guardians Junior Novel. Tell me what you think. No bad language, please!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 5, 2014

    Dim

    I love it!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 1, 2014

    The book I loved

    I loved the book so much that I asked my librarian when she got the chance if she could get the second book for me thats how much I loved it!!!!!!!! :)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 24, 2013

    exellent book!

    You will love this book! Buy it!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 16, 2013

    Amazing!

    William Joyce does an amazing job connecting the beleifs of the man known as "Santa" to the book! A little confusing at first though.

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