Micha, Olive, and Dillip are celebrating Micha’s birthday when a messenger arrives from Nor with grave news. A horrible enchantment has overcome the Kingdom of Nor and all of its inhabitants, including Micha and Olive’s parents, the King and Queen. Micha must take on the responsibilities of being a queen much sooner than expected and along with the Knights, led by the brave and loyal Demetrius, battle enemies in order to regain control of Nor and lift a witch’s curse saving her parents and freeing the kingdom. Micha faces giants, dragons, and witches in her war against evil and learns so much more than combat skills along the way.
While I am not the intended audience for this book, I enjoyed it just the same. This is one of those gems that parents and children can read together and both enjoy. I was transported to the Kingdom of Nor and while I caught on to nuances and hints of the story younger readers might not initially recognize, it was an enjoyable journey.
This story had some underlying lessons that, as a parent, I greatly appreciate. Micha is faced with the daunting task of ruling her kingdom before her time and saving everyone from the grips of a horrible enchantment. Through the process she shows a paramount amount of strength for a young woman. She is the main character of the book and it is always refreshing to have a strong female role.
One part of the book that stuck with me from the moment I read it has to do with a person’s future/destiny/calling:
One’s calling isn’t about excitement or adventure or glory. It’s about doing the right thing, whether it be in the face of adversity and danger, or monotony and boredom.
In a time of unease and uncertainty in the country, I felt reading this particular part of the book spoke volumes. In the end, it’s about doing the right thing; the golden rule, really.
The story was a little slow to start, but I think it would still keep a young reader’s attention. Maybe not my kids, but they have copious amounts of ants in their pants.
As usual, I don’t want to give too much away with this one. You have to read it yourself!
But, there were some pleasant surprises written. Some of them I saw coming, others I did not and those are the ones I live for. There are hidden lessons that I appreciated, particularly the ending! I did not see that coming, but I loved it.
R.L. Stelzer writes in such a way that her characters are believable and realistic, including the dragons and giants. They are personable, approachable, and palpable. She provides just enough descriptions to let your imagination take hold, which I still love doing as an adult. It is one of the main reasons I read. The names are unique and while I probably pronounced them wrong in my head, I liked the diversity. This story isn’t about run of the mill Jessica, Jane, Elizabeth, or Annie. This is about Queen Micha and her Knights!
There are just enough twists and turns to keep young readers, as well as myself, tuned in and reading more. Not too many, not too little, but just right like Baby Bear’s porridge. Too many twists have me thinking that the author was running out of story and just started throwing things in, like Fonzy’s jumping of the shark, but not here (that’s a throwback reference for the old ones like me lol).
In the end, they live happily ever after, sort of. The ending is left open in a way to allow for sequels (please, please, please), while still providing closure.
I have the pleasure of discussing this book with author R.L. Stelzer at the end of January with my university book club. I am looking forward to discussing more of the intricate details with her, but here is some of the discussion we have had online so far.
I have always been curious about the way people write. Of course, different topics call for different methods of writing, but creatively speaking, what makes the story unfold? Planning? Letting the characters “talk” to you? A combination of both?
For Stelzer, it was a combination of both. Some of the characters and the ending was planned, in a sense, but a lot of the writing unfolded while writing.
For writing by the seat of your pants, so to speak, the story unfolded beautifully. There were many nights I had trouble putting it down and in a way I didn’t want it to end.
We also asked her if there were any sequels planned! And…. there are! But, don’t ask me who they involve or what they’re about, because I’m not telling! 🙂
So, keep your eyes open because this isn’t the last of Queen Micha and her wonderful crew of characters.