Sunday, March 14, 2010

Review for The Mystery of Journey's Crowne

The Mystery of Journey’s Crowne
by K. Michael Crawford
(Virtual Book Worm, September 2008)

The Mystery of Journey’s Crowne is an amazing adventure drawing game that is unique and different. It begins with Bazel Lark who is confronted by a man who has a box with a mysterious key tucked neatly inside. The key is supposed to unlock the mystery of Journey’s Crowne. So, of course, Bazel, being the adventurer that he is, buys the key from the man and there begins his adventure. The problem is that, after years of searching, he cannot unlock the mystery. So he puts the problem and adventure to the reader to discover its secrets by having them draw in pictures and solve various puzzles that guide the reader along the way inside of the book.

This book is unique because it is a well-developed picture book slash drawing book slash workbook. The beautiful pictures dominate the reader’s view helping them become creative as to the characters and creatures they will be drawing in the spaces provided. Children who love to draw will love a chance at solving this drawing mystery. The puzzles in this book are diverse and challenging for the reader, which makes them fun to solve. This book is definitely for older children. With the diversity of puzzles, not all readers may know how to solve them. Some of the puzzles have directions on how to solve them, some do not. Unless you are familiar with the various puzzles that are out there, without direction, some may struggle through the puzzle portion. However, if the reader is a big puzzle fan like this reviewer, then the reader will have no problem solving the puzzle portion and can figure everything out on their own just fine.

The author gives several opportunities for children to do research on answering the questions and topics the reader is not familiar with and does not know the answers to, which is really fun. It gets the reader into the story even more and gets the reader to learn interesting facts as well.

Overall, K. Michael Crawford’s adventure book is unique and different from the other picture books slash workbooks out there. The author does a great job at creating such wonderful mysteries and interesting characters.

Reviewer Renee Hand is the award-winning author of The Crypto-Capers series. Look for her upcoming release The Adventures of Joe-Joe Nut and Biscuit Bill, The Great Pie Catastrophe.

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