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It reminded me of Alice in Wonderland and how once she left some sort of creature/obstacle behind, there ...
It reminded me of Alice in Wonderland and how once she left some sort of creature/obstacle behind, there was always something else even more strange ahead of them - readingwithstyle
I never had a dull moment reading the book. It was fun and full of exciting happenings and fast-paced just the way I like it! I recommend it to young readers but adults can still enjoy the story. - coffeebooksandme
Sara's life is drastically changed the moment a convoy of horse-drawn caravans enters the quiet Reidenburgerstrasse in the small German village where she lives with the people she thinks are her parents.
Sara doesn't know that her parents found her in a basket on their doorstep thirteen years earlier. Neither does she know that she is a gypsy or that she is going to be the greatest sorceress who has ever lived.
Soon Sara will discover a magical world she never knew existed and go on a journey that she knows will cost her dearly.
Posted November 3, 2011
Sara was left on the doorstep belonging to the Schneiders, a couple who longed for a child but were unable to conceive. Taking the little girl in, they raised her with love and kindness. But as Sara grew, it became obvious that there was something different about her. It is when her biological parents come back to claim her that things start to make sense. The daughter of a strong Romani leader, Sara discovers that she was born to fulfill a destiny - to become the greatest sorceress the world had ever seen.
Eventually, even though she has not come into her full powers yet, Sara makes a dangerous journey to find a way she can save her baby brother from a strange illness. Along the way, she meets magical creatures she had no idea even existed. Some are friendly and helpful, others are definitely not. For this reason, she is glad to have the company of a young Romani boy, Manolo with her. He guides her through both the easy parts of the journey and the scary places she would not have dared try on her own. He also has secrets he hasn't shared with her.
The Eye of the Crystal Ball by T.P. Boje is a tale that gives the reader a taste of many things supernatural. Filled with gifted Romani, evil witches, giant arachnids and more, there is something for everyone who loves paranormal fiction. The story has a promising premise, one that the author can run with, following this book with sequels.
This being said, there were a few things that held me back from enjoying the book as much as I would have liked. For most of the first part of the book, and many parts after as it goes along, the story is told to the reader instead of letting the reader discover and experience the story through the eyes and voices of the characters. This makes it more difficult to keep the reader's attention. There were some issues with Sara and her story, as well. The Schneiders, who had waited so long for their first child, easily let her go and Sara went off willingly with strangers claiming to be her parents. There was not a lot of detail about how she handled such a radical transition on a day to day basis. Long periods of time passed in a sentence or two without giving a good idea of the new day to day activities in her new life; what she liked and what she didn't. Was she making friends in her tribe? Or were other children scared or jealous of here?
I must admit, I never really had a good feel for whether or not I liked Sara. I did enjoy that she was independent with a strong stubborn streak, but sometimes she simply came off as obstinate. In addition, the ability for several types of spells to easily catch her in their snares and not let go without Manolo's help, gave the impression of weakness instead of the burgeoning abilities of the greatest sorceress of all times. I understand that she is supposed to be young, but as a reader, I had hoped that she would mature into more powers on her journey. Also, shouldn't her parents have told her about some of these creatures so she could be prepared if she ever came across them? I have to say, T.P. Boje definitely did a good job with the magical creatures found along the way to the end of Sara's journey. But, being bothered that Sara could hardly use her power to defend herself when needed, it took away some of the effect of having them in the story for me.
All in all, I found The Eye of the Crystal Ball to be a good story with lots of potential, but in need of more details and dialogue.
Posted October 19, 2011
My Review: The Eye of the Crystal Ball is a young adult fantasy novel and if you like to read about Gypsies, witches, dragons, fortune tellers, werewolves, unicorns, and goblins then this is one to read.
As Sara journey off with her friend Manolo to find a cure for her baby brother she encounter obstacles and creatures along the way.
Despite a few grammatical errors and editing issues, this book is sure to satisfy your imagination with fantasy and adventure. The characters are all worth reading about, as they draw the reader into the novel that you couldn't help but turn each page to read more for example, Abigail the ten-foot speed talking snail. This book will be great for young adults who love to read fantasy.
FTC Disclosure: I received a review copy of this book from the author in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion in any way.
Posted August 17, 2011
Wow! I was completely blown away with this story! It was so much more than I expected after reading the description. I felt like a kid again because this book is full of magical words all combines to make an amazing story. Gypsies, dragons, elves, witches, fortune tellers, unicorns, werewolves, goblins, and much much more. The way this book is written I felt like I was reading a fairy tale. Each chapter was exciting and new, with different characters and descriptions. You can't help but love Sara and her 'friends'. Just a warning...there were quite a few grammatical errors. Places that needed corrected punctuation, words not used in the correct way, and typo's. I just plowed right past them because the story wouldn't let me go. The author is from Denmark so I have a feeling that is part of the reason and I can accept that.
Sara is born to gypsy parents, but with the war going on, she is left upon the doorstep of childless couple Mr. and Mrs. Schnieder. Mr. and Mrs. think their dream of a baby has finally come true! They give Sara a good life, but no matter what she just doesn't fit in and no one understands her. As a result of her being so different, a teacher gives her a book to read. That was all it took...one book and Sara was in love. One day after the war is over Sara's parents show up to take her back and introduce her to the wonderful, magical world they live in. Sara has big shoes to fill as she is prophesied to be the next great sorceress. Just when she is finally starting to feel like she is finally where she belongs, a long comes a baby brother. After he becomes ill, Sara goes on a quest with her friend Manolo to find the eye of the crystal ball to find the way to save him. Along the way, Sara also learns some life lessons about pride, vanity, greed and how to fight the negative and keep the positive in her life and why it is so important. There were ups and downs throughout the journey and many times Sara's strength and values were tested.
"There are many different passions as there are people but Sara's had always been books. If you have never spend whole afternoon forgetting the world around you over a book, forgetting even cold and hunger. if you have never read under the bedclothes with a flashlight, because your father or mother or someone else told it was time to sleep and turned off the light. If you have never wept bitter tears because a wonderful story had come to an end and you had to say goodbye to the characters with whom you have shared so many adventures and ups and downs with, whom you have loved so deeply and hoped and feared with. If such things have never been a part of your life, you probably wouldn't understand what Sara did next."
If you are a fan of YA fantasy adventure books or would like a easy, fun, enjoyable read, adult or child, go ahead and pick this one up. You won't be disappointed. I can't wait to read this to two of my step-daughters (who are 8 and 11)because I know they would love this story.
Posted August 2, 2011
One day the manager of a small railway station is late for work because a dream has come true. After years of waiting for a child, he and his wife have found one on their doorstep. Sadly they lose her twelve years later, when the story really begins in T.P. Boje's children's novel, The Eye of the Crystal Ball. There's mystery behind Sara's birth of course-more mysteries behind her powers. But when Sara goes traveling, from Germany just after WWII, to Spain and to lands of mystery and magic beyond, she learns a whole new way of life, and meets a host of fascinating new characters.
The story unfolds with wise lessons in not listening to rumors, and possibly less wise ones in not doing as you're told. The language is uncomplicated, making this a quick, easy read, though some odd word choices slow the story down. There's mystical danger, a classic quest, curious myths and powerful magic. And there's Sara herself-a protagonist who is "not a girl that believed in fear," one who would "most definitely" face anything she should be afraid of-an ordinary girl who proves to have extraordinary power.
The story's a nicely plotted mix of scary monsters, desperate rescues, dangerous landscapes and nicely told mythology; a good long read with pleasing plotline and lots of action to keep young readers interested.
Disclosure: I was given a free ecopy of this book by the author in exchange for an honest review.
Posted July 25, 2011
Wow, this was not what I was excepting, but definitely in a good way! As I was reading The Eye of the Crystal Ball, I felt like I was reading a fairy tale with witches, creepy forest, and yes, even unicorns. The narration kind of reminded me of the beginning of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, with a voice telling you about the character's life and what they go through. This aspect made it quirky and reminded me of the fun, magical books that I would read when I was younger. With this being said though, I felt that at some points I was being told the story instead of getting lost in Sara's magical world. This point is the reason this book only got four stars instead of five. Other than that, I was really intrigued by the life of Gypsies with magic, spells, and potions. It was fun to see what would come next on Sara's adventure to save her baby brother. The whole part of the story where Sara was traveling to the witch's castle to receive the crystal ball reminded me of Alice in Wonderland and how once she left some sort of creature/obstacle behind, there was always something else even more strange ahead of them. I would definitely say that this book is geared towards the younger young adult audience, but it was still so refreshing to read a quirky, fantastical story.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 23, 2011
Want to pick up a book and know that you will enjoy your read? This novel is for you! The plot of the novel is very intricate and the reader will probably not find one like it in any other novel. The characters are all worth reading about, they draw the reader into the novel. The secondary characters tend to be very different, almost magical, in this novel. The reader will enjoy getting to know most of them. Sara herself is a very endearing character with many good, solid qualities that will allow the reader to identify and commiserate with her at times in the novel. The world that Sara travels in is very intriguing and will have the reader turning page after page. The author writes a very good, cohesive novel; the reader will not be confused at all though. The reader will also like the theme of the Romani people, not a typical characteristic to read about in novels. This novel is one of the rare types where a reader may enjoy it be he/she ten or fifty-two.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.