By Dean Lorey
Dusty gem from my bookshelf – Middle Grade paranormal
Charlie Benjamin can’t hang out with normal kids because when he falls asleep he has a special gift that opens portals into the Netherworld and lets the creepy crawlies into our world. He is picked up by the Nightmare Academy for training to become a monster hunter. It is a little bit Monsters Inc meets Percy Jackson with a dash of Harry Potter. Great for 8-12 year old boys and girls who like those action books with a little scary thrown in. Would also be a ton of fun to read to littler ones, cause while it is kind of scary, it isn’t all THAT scary.
It isn’t long before Charlie turns the academy on its head, drags his new friends into a crazy adventure to save his parents and goes toe to toe with the biggest, badest uglies from the Nether. It is an action packed, find out who you “really” are and why you are different from everyone else book. It is about analyzing your fears and imagination and learning to harness it. But it is also about the odd and lonely kid finding a place to fit in.
There isn’t a settling in period, the book moves quickly and there really isn’t tons of time spent on details and explanations so it keeps the action rolling. But it is a very visual book, with a couple of cool illustrations thrown in so you get to see and read about some creepy crawly monsters! It would make a good movie, but it could be pretty scary to see everything on screen. Lots of fun, I can’t wait until my nephew can read this because he is going to love it!