“James Clyde and the Diamonds of Orchestra” by Colm McElwain

“James Clyde” is a fun children’s fantasy about an 11-year-old boy who discovers he’s actually the secret heir of the ruling family of Orchestra, a fantasy world in another dimension. Plots, intrigue, and revelations of secret powers ensue.

It’s a bit hard for me to evaluate this as an adult, but I dare say that when I was James’s age I would have enjoyed this tremendously. It has a child-like sense of wonder and rollicking adventure, not to mention rule-breaking and children’s heroics, that is likely to appeal to the 11 year old in all of us. The language is simple enough for a middle-grade reader not to get bogged down in, but without being precious or condescending. In short, this is a fun quick read for the pre-teen set, and fans of Harry Potter or the Chronicles of Narnia who are looking for similar fare are likely to enjoy it.

My thanks to the author for providing a review copy of this book. All opinions are my own.

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