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We were so excited to receive an advanced copy of Abi Elphinstone's newest middle grade fantasy, RUMBLESTAR from Simon and Schuster Australia. Here are our thoughts on the book!

Rumblestar is roaring with marvellous magic and heart-warming moments.

This middle grade adventure follows Casper Tock, an eleven-year-old boy with a serious organisation obsession who stumbles into the unmapped kingdom of Rumblestar. He teams up with Utterly Thankless, a bottler in training with a certain dislike for the rules, and her miniature dragon, Arlo, in order to restore the worlds magic. They must outwit Drizzle Hags, captain enchanted hot air balloons and fight against shatterblast winds in order to defeat the evil Morg and her army of Midnights.

Abi Elphinstone’s worldbuilding is remarkably clever. Her creation of the weather marvels is so intricate and captivating, that you’ll find yourself believing that dragons really do deliver the weather to us. Her ability to seamlessly weave important lessons throughout the plot is brilliant. She uses the concept of ‘swallowing a storm’ to describe someone who harbours grief. We also love her analogy of friendship, that it’s sticky like jam and will stretch your heart, changing its shape. Not to mention the uplifting notion, that kingdoms are built on kindness which is such a positive reinforcement, not only for kids, but for everyone!

Rumblestar is abundant with unique creations such as the ‘just-in-case,’ a bed that allows you to choose your dream preference and of course, a microphone-operated hot air balloon. We find ourselves wishing these things really existed. Every aspect of the novel is creatively named and jam-packed with description, from the places to the creatures and even the weather, so it is essential to pay close attention with so much information to take in.

There is limitless wonder to unpack inside this book, and kids will love going on this journey with Casper, Utterly and Arlo. We are on the edges of our canoe armchairs eagerly awaiting the next instalment of this magical series, we’ve got our courage and sense of humour packed and ready. Rumblestar truly is the adventure of a lifetime!

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