Sunday, August 5, 2012

MMGM Review and Giveaway: The Magic Warble by Victoria Simcox

by Victoria Simcox, illustrations by Amanda Swanson
Two Harbors Press, 2008
ISBN: 978-1935097174
Grades 4-8
Reviewed from copy received from giveaway.
All opinions expressed are solely my own.

Twelve-year-old Kristina Kingsly feels like the most unpopular girl in her school. The kids all tease her, and she never seems to fit in. But when Kristina receives an unusual Christmas gift, she suddenly finds herself magically transported to the land of Bernovem, home of dwarfs, gnomes, fairies, talking animals and the evil Queen Sentiz. 

 In Bernovem, Kristina not only fits in, she's honored as "the chosen one," the only one who can release the land from Queen Sentiz's control. But it's not as simple as it seems. To save Bernovem, she must place the gift she was given, the famous "Magic Warble," in its final resting place. She must travel through the deep forest, climb a treacherous mountain, and risk capture by the queen's "zelbocks" before she reaches her destination. Guided by her new fairy friends, Clover and Looper and by Prince Werrien, a teenage boy, and an assortment of other characters, Kristina sets off on a perilous journey that not only tests her strength but her heart.

About the Author:

Victoria was born in Scarborough, Ontario, Canada, to an Austrian immigrant mother, and a Dutch immigrant father. She now lives in Western Washington with her husband, Russ and their three children, Toby, Kristina, and William. Her other family members are a Chihuahua, named Pipsy and two cats, named Frodo and Fritz. Besides being an author, Victoria is a home-schooling mother of twelve years and an elementary school art teacher of eleven years. In her spare time, Victoria enjoys managing her two older children's Celtic band. She also loves writing, reading, painting watercolors, hiking, good movies, and just simply hanging out with her family and friends. 


I found this book a fun fantasy quest. Kristina, a quiet girl often bullied in her own world must step forward in order to save the land of Bernovem from the wicked Queen Sentiz. Luckily she doesn't have to do it alone.  With the help of the true Prince of Bernovem, Werrien, and others she meets along the way, she must face the wicked queen and return the Magic Warble to its proper place. She will face many challenges along the way, storms, mountains, and the evil queen herself, but perhaps most surprisingly, those who bully her. Will she find the courage to do the impossible? 

While I might wish for more character development, the plot and setting were both quite enjoyable.  I appreciated the way the author came at the story from more than one direction.  We get to see the story through experiences by a host of characters as the different characters slowly come together until the final confrontation. I liked the variety of characters who have their strengths and weaknesses.  The story clearly shows how a basically good person can become a traitor or even just a bystander through the choices they make. I recommend this book to those who enjoy a good fantasy quest that will keep them turning the pages with some great twists and turns. 


  • This giveaway is open internationally to any who can read an e-book.
  • You must be 13 years or older.
  • I will pass on your email addresses to the author and she will send you the book.
Thanks for participating.


  1. Ooo--a fantasy quest! Those seem to have fallen out of fashion these days, but I love them! And the character names aren't too difficult to pronounce (a common problem, I find, in adult fantasy :-)

  2. I would recommend Neverdark by C.S. Einfeld. It is a great, clean middle grade fantasy. My kids and I really enjoyed that one. Thanks for the giveaway! :)

  3. I have been curious about this since I read my first review of it. I love fantasy and it sounds like a fun book. I like the themes in the book and look forward to reading it. Thanks for the giveaway!

    I would recommend Fablehaven by Brandon Mull. It is a great series that will take you to places you won't believe!

  4. Interesting. Fantasy quests aren't my favorite in MG--I miss the love stories that inevitably accompany YA fantasy--but this sounds like a nice twisty story.

  5. Always on the look out for great fantasy for MG and am a particular fan of alternate worlds and quests. This has both! Thanks for sharing it.

  6. I would reccommend Lloyd Alexander's The High King or any in that series. Oh! And The Serpent's Egg Trilogy:


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