I’ve said this before, but I really do want to read more middle grade books. The ones I’ve read before are books I’ve really enjoyed, so I need to make more time for them. So when I saw the sign ups for Grimworld by Avery Moray, I was really excited. Grimworld sounded like the perfect book to read around Halloween! Let’s take a look at what I thought of this book and a little excerpt.
A big thanks to the author and Lola’s Blog Tours for providing me with an ARC to read and review.
This is my stop during the blog tour for Grimworld by Avery Moray. This blog tour is organized by Lola’s Blog Tours. The blog tour runs from 26 October till 8 November. See the tour schedule here.
Every day, thirteen year old Henry Bats has his usual bowl of Sugar Slugs, helps tend Cobalt Sidewinders at Frank’s Peculiar Pets, and keeps to himself with his comic book collection. Just your typical day in Grimworld, where the sky is always dark and shadows lurk in the streets. What’s not typical is a suspicious Nightspook luring Henry into a cemetery in the middle of the night with the promise of a prized comic book. The Nightspook steals part of Henry’s lifespan with a pocket watch, which begins counting down to his death. Henry is running out of time, and the pocket watch won’t stop ticking…
You can find Grimworld on Goodreads
Watch the book trailer here
Grimworld sounded like the perfect Halloween read and it definitely had some spooky elements. Our main character Henry is tricked by a Vytiper (a kind of ghost) and this causes him to lose some of his life. According to the pocket watch he is now unable to remove, he only has 10 years to live.
Henry lives in Grimworld and it seems like a darker world with different creatures/ghosts. I know this is a shorter middle grade for a more younger reader, but I would’ve loved just a little bit more information about this world he’s in. We learn a few things along the way, but this story would’ve been just a bit more interesting for me with more knowledge about the world our characters live in.
I really enjoyed our main character though. He was scared, but very determined to undo this magic and get his years back. Even more so for his new friend, who has even less time than he does. These characters go on a fun adventure together. Even though at times it felt really fast and I always wonder how 13 year olds can do all this without their parents getting suspicious, haha. Their way of figuring things out and fighting was a lot of fun to see!
Family and friendship played a big part in this story as well and it’s one of my favorite things about middle grade stories. Grimworld would be an excellent spooky read for this age group and the perfect Halloween read. The concept and characters are really amazing! I hope this author writes more in this world.
His parents said goodnight and Henry fell asleep in his Captain Grim sheets. He was dreaming about a giant meatloaf with legs when he awoke to a noise. He rolled over and tried to fall back asleep. A minute later he heard the noise again, a sort of thump. His eyes squinted at the alarm clock. 3 A.M.
“Hattie?” he yawned.
No reply. He pried his eyes open and lifted his head a few inches. As there were no windows in the room, the only light came from the glowing numbers on the alarm clock. But there across the room, darker than dark, was a shadow in the vague shape of a person. Henry blinked rapidly, hoping his mind was playing tricks on him, but the black mass remained. He sat up, heart pounding. There were no distinguishable features on the shadow, but he knew whatever it was, was watching him.
“Hello?” he whispered.
The mass seemed to shiver, and as if from nowhere, there came a voice. “Hello.” It was deep and muted, as if underwater, but he heard it clearly. He made himself as still as possible.
“What are you?”
“Nightspooks are invisible. And they can’t talk.”
“You’re wrong.” The shadow crept closer. It glided across the floor until it was beside his nightstand. Henry repeated in his mind that Nightspooks were harmless.
“Hattie told me about you,” it said.
Henry had trouble getting his words out. “Oh, she did?”
“I need your help.”
“How about you ask Hattie? She can be really helpful, you know.”
The edges of the figure became sharper. “No. You.”
Henry slowly lay down and pulled the blanket over his face, speaking through the fabric. “I really have to get some sleep, so if you could just leave.”
After a minute of silence, Henry poked his head out from the sheet. The shadow was still there, hovering above him, and it was growing larger. His palms were slick with sweat. “I guess you’re not leaving.”
“No.” Its voice was louder.
“What do you need help with?”
“I need something.”
“What do you need?”
“Come with me.”
“I really don’t have time right now.”
The shadow expanded further. “Come. Now.”
“I can’t.” Henry shrunk into his pillow.
The black stretched out, covering the bed, its voice vibrating in his ears. “Come now. There will be a reward.”
Henry knew if he didn’t go, the Nightspook wouldn’t go away, or worse, it would attach itself to him. “What kind of reward?”
“Anything your heart desires.”
He thought about what his heart desired. “A first edition of Captain Grim?”
“What if I don’t go?”
“No escape,” the shadow boomed and completely engulfed the bed with its mass.
Henry gulped. “Promise you’ll leave me alone after?”
“Yes.” He squeezed his fists and released. “Fine.”
The mass shrunk and disappeared through the door. Henry got up, not bothering to change out of his pajamas. The roaring snore of Gobbert echoed throughout the house and he moved with every exhale, making sure to step over the squeaky floorboards. The shadow was waiting for him outside, now a suspended lump the size of his head.
About the Author:
Avery Moray is a storyteller who specializes in middle grade and young adult fantasy. She lives in a land with tall mountains and wide plains with her two furry sidekicks and one non-furry accomplice. She likes sweets, cats, Halloween, and loves creating all kind of things, stories being one of them.
There is a tour wide giveaway for the blog tour of Grimworld. All prizes are US Only. These are the prizes you can win:
– Signed copy of Grimworld
– Signed copy of Grimworld + bookmark, notepad, and pin
– Signed copy of Grimworld + bookmark, notepad, and pin + unreleased chapter art print
For a chance to win, enter the rafflecopter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway