Wednesday, May 17

5 Worlds: The Sand Warrior (Review and Giveaway!)

For yet one more giveaway, I have a fantastic new graphic novel, which is a genre I don't tackle often enough. Good thing I have opportunities like these to share some graphic-novel-goodness with you. Thanks to Random House for providing me an ARC and for sponsoring this giveaway! Enter below...

5 Worlds: The Sand Warrior
Written by Mark Siegal & Alexis Siegal
Illustrated by Xanthe Bouma, Matt Rockefeller, & Boya Sun

My rating: ★★★★

ISBN: 978-1101935866
Publisher: Random House
Date of publication: May 2, 2017
Age: Grades 4 - 8
Genre: Graphic Novel, Fantasy, Science Fiction
Format: ARC from publisher

Themes: adventure, heroes, friendship, alternate universe, elemental powers

"The Five Worlds are on the brink of extinction unless five ancient and mysterious beacons are lit. When war erupts, three unlikely heroes will discover there’s more to themselves—and more to their worlds—than meets the eye...

 - The clumsiest student at the Sand Dancer Academy, Oona Lee is a fighter with a destiny bigger than she could ever imagine.
- A boy from the poorest slums, An Tzu has a surprising gift and a knack for getting out of sticky situations.
- Star athlete Jax Amboy is beloved by an entire galaxy, but what good is that when he has no real friends?

"When these three kids are forced to team up on an epic quest, it will take not one, not two, but 5 WORLDS to contain all the magic and adventure!"

Super intensely awesome adventure! I mean, that's the basic review right there. It was easy to be sucked in and read this in one sitting. The three main kids each have their own personalities and drives that really push the story. There's enough of their histories shared to really feel invested—but some mystery, too, that makes me eager for the rest of the books in this series. Then there's the story itself! They embark on an intense, yet classic adventure: saving the world! Obviously. Okay, so while the theme is not too unique, the setting is. Maybe even too unique? There were more than a handful of times that I was left trying to remember what was where and who was what, with complicated (in the tradition of high, epic sci-fi/fantasy) place names like "Mon Domani, Moon Yatta, Salassandra, and Grimbo (E)" and all sorts of new technology, characters, culture, species, etc. etc. While it is vital to the story, I do hope that it doesn't turn away younger readers who may be lost after a few pages.

The art is, of course, amazingly action-packed and emotional. I'm always amazed by graphic novel artists, since so much of the story depends on their depictions; there's a lot to infer from the art, here. I am (maybe, slightly) surprised that with three illustrators (really, such a small complaint) that there wasn't a bit more detail? But then again, the more cartoonish feel is more appealing to younger audiences. Really, overall, just well done and so vivid, especially for a completely new world(s) and characters.

Overall, it's hard not to recommend. It's sure to be a hit with graphic novel lovers, and may even be just the ticket to get the more reluctant readers interested in the fantasy genre. Check it out!

Find it at your library or on Amazon

MARK SIEGEL has written and illustrated several award-winning picture books and graphic novels, including the New York Times bestseller Sailor Twain, or the Mermaid in the Hudson. He is also the founder and editorial director of First Second Books. He lives with his family in New York. Follow Mark on Tumblr at @marksiegel and the 5 Worlds team on Twitter at @5WorldsTeam.

ALEXIS SIEGEL is a writer and translator based in London, England. He has translated a number of bestselling graphic novels, including Joann Sfar’s The Rabbi’s Cat, Pénélope Bagleu’s Exquisite Corpse, and Gene Luen Yang’s American Born Chinese (into French).

XANTHE BOUMA is an illustrator based in Southern California. When not working on picture books, fashion illustration, and comics, Xanthe enjoys soaking up the beachside sun. Follow Xanthe on Tumblr at @yumbles and on Twitter at @xoxobouma.

MATT ROCKEFELLER is an illustrator and comic book artist from Tucson, Arizona. His work has appeared in a variety of formats, including book covers, picture books, and animation. Matt lives in New York City. Follow him on Tumblr at @mrockefeller and on Twitter at @mcrockefeller.

BOYA SUN is an illustrator and co-author of the graphic novel Chasma Knights. Originally from China, Boya has traveled from Canada to the United States and now resides in the charming city of Baltimore. Follow Boya on Tumblr at @boyasun and on Twitter at @boyaboyasun.

Giveaway! One lucky winner will receive a copy of 5 WORLDS: THE SAND WARRIOR, courtesy of Random House. Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Open to the US only, ends 5/25/2017. No purchase is necessary. Void where prohibited. Literary Hoots and the publisher/publicity department are not responsible for lost, stolen, or damaged items. If you are under 13, please get a parent or guardian's permission to enter. Winner will be chosen randomly via Rafflecopter after the contest ends. Literary Hoots reserves the right to disqualify contestants. Fraudulent activities will be monitored and will lead to exclusion. Winner will have 48 hours to respond to the email, otherwise, we will pick a new winner.

If you have any questions, feel free to email me emily{at}literaryhoots{dot}com

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