The Ugly Teapot: Book One: Hannah

The Ugly Teapot: Book One: Hannah

by Mr Fred Louis Holmes

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781530743711
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 03/25/2016
Pages: 250
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.57(d)
Age Range: 11 - 15 Years

About the Author

This is Fred Holmes's first fiction novel, having previously ghost written a nonfiction book, LETTERS FROM DAD. He is known primarily as a writer and director of films and television, working primarily in family films and children's television. His work can be seen on Mary Lou Retton's FLIP FLOP SHOP, BARNEY & FRIENDS, WISHBONE, HORSELAND, IN SEARCH OF THE HEROES, and many other shows, for which he has won two Emmys and three CINE Golden Eagles, among numerous other awards. He has also directed three feature films, including DAKOTA, starring Lou Diamond Phillips, distributed by Miramax, and HEART LAND, a Bollywood feature film shot on location in India. He lives in the southwest United States, and can be found online at www.flholmes.com

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The Ugly Teapot: Book One: Hannah 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
BlueEyeBooks More than 1 year ago
Thank you to the author, Fred Holmes, for gifting me with a copy of The Ugly Teapot in exchange for an honest review! 1.  The plot.  By definition, the middle grade (MG) genre is very plot driven.  The plot for this specific book is well-organized and structured with a spectacular sense of overall drive.  This is an Aladdin retelling and there is an overall end goal to get the lamp to the secret cavern in order to save the world from itself (more on the retelling later).  The author did a great job keeping the action moving along which created a very fast paced novel; perfect for MG. 2.  The characters.  This is where I have a little bit of internal struggle.  On one hand, the genre is MG which designates a certain amount of ambiguity in terms of character development.  On the other hand, I found myself consistently baffled by the decisions of the characters.  This was especially the case with Hannah.  She seemed to always think in the moment and never took a big picture view.  This was not helped by the fact that I'm unsure of her actual age.  I don't believe it was ever actually stated (or perpetuated) in the novel and she would act mature in one scene and descend into a 10 year old mindset in another.  With all that being said, it doesn't hold a large bearing on my rating simply because this is MG and the characters don't matter as much as in YA or Adult. 3.  The ending.  I feel I have to address this as I am a bit mystified by the ending.  Generally speaking, without spoilers, I wish there were more there.  Hannah and her father's adventure ends quite abruptly and after the ending, there is very little recovery time shown which would have built up the ending's reasoning a bit more.  There is an epilogue as well that connects this book to the next (not currently written to my knowledge at this time) which I did appreciate.  It did a wonderfully smooth job of slipping the reader into the next story.  The rest of this section has spoilers.  This played a significant role in my rating. 4.  The retelling.  I truly loved how the author chose to do an Aladdin retelling.  I rewatched the Disney version during Freeform's 25 Days of Christmas and I was thinking about why there aren't many retellings of Aladdin.  There are plenty of Peter Pan, Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, etc etc, but there aren't many of Aladdin so I found this book quite refreshing and unique.  The story is kept relatively the same (it's set hundreds of years after Aladdin gets the lamp) with some changes. 5.  The writing.  This is the best part of my reading experience.  The author of this book has such concise and smooth prose which made reading a true delight.  I felt as if I was actually within the novel and participating in the story, even with the hiccups. The Final Verdict: This retelling of Aladdin has a well-structured plot line, solid characters, and excellent prose. 3.5 stars
ForeverLostinLiterature More than 1 year ago
The Ugly Teapot is a heartfelt, touching story that features an imaginative, exciting world. The author, Fred Holmes, has an in-depth background in directing and screenwriting, making this his first foray in novel writing, and I think his talents transferred over to paper remarkably well. I really wasn't sure what to expect from this book, as the summary provided is intriguing and informative, but also cleverly vague regarding details. If, like me, you are a fan of many Arabian Nights stories or Disney's Aladdin, then you are probably familiar with the idea of a genie (or from one of many other sources, of course), and this particular notion greatly intrigued me. The Ugly Teapot is paced extremely well. There is an abundance of action and magic packed within these pages, but it never once felt as though it was rushed or moving too slowly. It is certainly fast-paced, but not in a negative way that is hard to follow. There weren't any dense information dumps, there were no parts that dragged on too long, and I never felt confused by too many plot elements. The entire story carried a delightfully whimsical atmosphere that helped the story breeze along, which led up to an incredible ending that I really enjoyed. Hannah is a wonderful main character. She is outgoing, strong, and extremely relatable. Her resilience in the fact of struggle was refreshing to read, and her character's development was written in a consistent manner. She's just one of those characters that are easy to love and root for throughout the entire story. This book also takes us into a variety of locations and cultures, and Holmes wrote these excursions in an informative and welcoming manner. Every description was vibrant and realistic, and I enjoyed being a part of Hannah's journey. I was actually quite thrilled to realize that this book would be taking its readers on a larger adventure into different areas of the world, as it gave the book an even more well-rounded feel. One aspect of this book that I particularly enjoyed were the strong familial themes. There are all too many books available about dysfunctional families or unhealthy father/daughter scenarios, so it was really refreshing to see such a strong, loving relationship between Hannah and her father. While this book may not be for everyone due to the middle grade/young adult audience it is intended for, I encourage everyone to give it a shot! If you're like me, there are no age restrictions on books. Overall, I am giving The Ugly Teapot four stars!
CharlotteLynnsReviews More than 1 year ago
3.5 STARS The Ugly Teapot is a fun, mystical story. It reminded me of the Disney movie of Aladdin, which is Hannah’s favorite. Remembering this helps make the book more enjoyable and pulls the story together. Hannah worships her father, who is a world photographer. When he dies she takes the Ugly Teapot out and makes a wish with the Genie to have her dad alive. The Ugly Teapot is a gift from one of her father’s trips. The people she meets while trying to help her dad are real people, people her father has worked with before. The places she travels to are all places that her father has photographed before and brought her back gifts from. The Ugly Teapot is a fun YA and MG adventure. There is a lot of adventure and magic along with dealing with the toughness of losing a father at a young age. Both aspects were written perfectly. I look forward to reading more of Fred Holmes’ books.
marleyreads More than 1 year ago
The Ugly Teapot is a book about a brave young woman who tries to do what feels right, and ends up doing something, maybe a little stupid? The book is about the Genie in the lamp, about loss and grief and how we deal with that. It is an incredibly easy read that I would highly recommend it! And it also has a MAJOR plot-twist that I did not see coming! Read the full review on my blog: www.booknookreading.wordpress.com
ReadersFavorite More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Patricia Reding for Readers' Favorite Hannah Bradbury is the heroine in The Ugly Teapot: Book One: Hannah by Fred Holmes. Fourteen years old, Hannah has just lost her world-traveling, danger-provoking, death-defying, genius-inspired photographer father. She is devastated, as he was her hero. As compared to her terribly ordinary waitress mother, Hannah loved her father's lively spirit, his sense of adventure, and his unrivaled gift for storytelling. Unable to face her grief, she is moved when her telepathic-talking dog, Griffer, suggests she take matters into her own hands. Specifically, Griffer reminds her of one of the many treasures Hannah's father had left her: an ugly old teapot that he claimed was Aladdin's lamp. When Griffer convinces her that there is no harm in giving it a try, she does, calling up Metathusalah the Magnificent. And so begins an adventure that takes Hannah and Griffer, with Hannah's brought-back-to-life father and his quirky, but loyal, assistant, Gus, to the Middle East. In hot pursuit is "The Magician" and his merry band of gun-toting thugs, all intent on acquiring the lamp/teapot from Hannah. In a rush into and then through a cave, while seeking to escape, Hannah discovers the power of her words, their specific meanings (as translated by the quite literal interpretations of Genie), and the consequences that may come of seeking to change the past. Fred Holmes offers middle-grade readers an adventure they won't soon forget in The Ugly Teapot. Even better, he drops bits of wisdom along the way: the importance of valuing a parent who sacrifices a life of excitement in exchange for being there for you on a daily basis, the value of faithful friends, the power that comes from reaching deep inside for the strength to take necessary risks you thought you could never take, and more. The text reads rather like a film would play out, and although some violence is met along the way, the details are not overdone. If you are looking for an adventure for young readers, you'll not regret picking up a copy of The Ugly Teapot.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My 10 year old daughter read this book and LOVED it. She can't wait for the second book in the series. GREAT STORY!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was a delight of imagination and magic from start to finish while dealing with the realities of death and loss. Mr. Holmes’ characters are sympathetic and relatable, and the story pulls you in immediately. I enjoyed Hannah and her internal dialogue with her dog, Gus’s humor, and the stoic portrayal of her father with just a hint of dad jokes. I am greatly looking forward to the next book in the series from Mr. Holmes, and I am ready to get lost again in the exciting world he has created. I hope these get made into a movie some day!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this aloud to my husband on our vacation trip. It was a fun read and kept us interested the whole time. Not just for kids. But for the kid in all of us.
WhisperingStories More than 1 year ago
As I’m sure I’ve mentioned before, I’m not normally a fan of YA fiction but something about the synopsis of this book caught my eye. I do like a good fairytale retelling and this book featured Aladdin’s lamp, as well as some more serious themes. The writing in this book is truly lovely. Hannah, the main character, is a 14 year old girl who has recently lost her father and is understandably struggling to come to terms with her life without him. This book actually reminds me a lot of the book/film ‘Bridge to Terabithia’ in the way that reality and magic are merged so it’s hard to keep track of what’s real, but that’s the beauty of it. The action sequences are great fun and flow brilliantly, and the characters that Hannah meets along the way are interesting and not too stereotypical for the Aladdin connection. This book is very difficult to review because the synopsis gives so little away, so I’m trying to skirt around the plot – so what I would like to say is that despite being a book about a teenager losing a parent, I’m not entirely sure how helpful it would be for a teen going through a similar circumstance. It could be cathartic but personally I’d find it too sad! It’s the story of a young girl coming to terms with her grief, but her methods aren’t exactly ones that I’d recommend… I’d recommend this book for ages 12+, it’s a nice and easy read and has a little bit of something for everyone.
Lovz-Books More than 1 year ago
14-year old Hannah is grieving the death of her father. The only thing she has left was the lamp he gave her, which she was reminded of by a telepathic dog. Mmm, that’s interesting. The lamp is just one of the “priceless relics” retrieved by her father from those dark and dangerous places he visited. He told her that this was “Aladdin’s lamp.” Ha! But, to Hannah, it was just an old, ugly teapot. But what if she could use it to resurrect her father? At first, it would seem her wish didn’t work and Hannah was now stuck with a raggedy lamp and a somber genie. Soon, she’s thrust in a whirlwind of chaos when she realizes her father is alive and has been kidnapped by the Magician, who only wants the lamp. As the story unfolds, it turns out that Aladdin’s lamp was not just a storybook or a myth; but “all myths have some basis in fact.” Now, the quest is on to return the lamp to the Cave of Forty Thieves to end the cycle of greed and suffering. Story is a well-written adventure. Who wouldn’t want to have Aladdin’s lamp and have 3 wishes? I liked how the author crafted history and mythology into a well-researched tale; he didn’t “Disney” it up, making it cheesy and frivolous (even though the talking dog may have been a little cheesy.) Instead, it felt more like an Indiana Jones adventure with its incisive knowledge and intrepid spirit. What was perhaps a little confusing was the concept of time. For example, as a scene of a mosque unfolded in front of Hannah’s eyes, her mother was staring at that same picture 7K miles away. What? I didn’t quite get that. Also, at times, I felt the trek to be daunting and some details to be too complicated. Although the historical significance was appreciated, I still would’ve much preferred a simplified version.