What’s it all about?:
Perfect for fans of J.K. Rowling and Roald Dahl!
When Alfie Bloom inherited a castle and a centuries-old magic, his dull and lonely life was changed forever. But Alfie’s new life has come with dangers he never could have expected. When Ashford the butler is kidnapped in the middle of the night, the castle comes under threat from a terrifying enemy. Trapped inside with only his twin cousins and best friend Amy, it’s up to Alfie to defend his inheritance and prevent a terrible fate from befalling the whole of England!
What did I think?:
Yesterday, I introduced the first book in a stunning new series by Gabrielle Kent and today I’m delighted to be part of a blog tour celebrating the second book in the Alfie Bloom series, Alfie Bloom And The Talisman Thief. Many thanks to Faye for inviting me to be part of the tour and to Scholastic UK for sending me a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. I’m so glad I didn’t have to wait a while to read about the marvellous Alfie and his adventures and this second offering from the author has definitely confirmed that I’ll be watching out for the rest of the books in the series.
After the exciting and dramatic events in the first book (which I’m not going to spoil for anyone who hasn’t started yet) Alfie is still enjoying his new life in the castle where he seems to find somewhere different to explore and new treasures to unearth every day. One very important treasure that Alfie is guarding is a special talisman which he wears around his neck to keep it safe. The talisman has very strange powers, Alfie discovers that he can read some previously indecipherable letters by using the lens part of the talisman and other parts work like a key and open strange new doorways and hidden passages within the castle walls.
This second novel shifts some focus onto Alfie’s butler, Ashford who has always seemed quite mysterious and a man of many secrets. However, it is not until Ashford is kidnapped by some elves and their terrifying Queen that Alfie realises just how secretive and important Ashford really is. The Elven Queen and her minions want the talisman very badly, for reasons I shall not divulge and will stop at nothing to get to it which puts Alfie, his best friend Amy and his cousins in very real jeopardy. Alfie must once again draw on all his inner powers, magical or otherwise to save Ashford, protect his castle and those he loves and prevent the Queen from getting her hands on something that could endanger all their lives.
Alfie Bloom And The Talisman Thief is an excellent follow up novel to the first book in the series and one I thoroughly enjoyed reading. I would probably recommend reading the first book before this as although it can be read quite easily as a stand-alone you’d be missing all the great parts like the development of the characters and how Alfie came to the castle in book one! My favourite character, apart from brave Alfie has to be Artan the loveable bear – who is actually a bear rug but makes an excellent flying carpet and has some brilliant jokes. Once again, we have a thrilling plot that is action-packed with little time to draw breath before the author throws in another exciting incident and I’ll certainly be looking out for the third book in the series.
Would I recommend it?:
But of course!
Star rating (out of 5):
Gabrielle Kent has worked in and around the video games industry for fifteen years and currently lectures in games art and design at Teeside University. As well as teaching, she directs and presents Animex, the UK’s largest annual games and animation festival, bringing young people together from all over Europe. Gabrielle has written and contributed to a number of articles, papers and broadcasts on gaming and is a regular judge on the Games BAFTA awards. In 2006 she was voted one of the Top 100 most Influential Women in the games industry by US based Next Gen magazine.
A huge thank you to everyone involved in this blog tour, I’ve had a great time doing it. Why not check out the rest of the stops on the tour where you’ll find some fantastic reviews from my fellow bloggers? Alfie Bloom And The Talisman Thief was released by Scholastic Press on 2nd June 2016 and is available from all good bookshops now.