By: Braden Bell
Expected Publishing: July 10th 2012 by CedarFort Inc
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Goodreads description--All thirteen-year-old Conner Dell wants to do is pass pre-algebra, play lacrosse, and possibly kiss Melanie Stephens. He didn’t mean to set anyone’s gym shorts on fire or make school lunches explode. But now that the strange powers inside him have been ignited, Conner’s normal teenage life is about to go up in flames!
This fast-paced novel is non-stop fun for kids and parents alike. With characters you can’t help but root for, a plot that keeps you guessing, and plenty of humor, it’s a guaranteed thrill ride from cover to cover!
I don’t start every review by telling you why I decided to pick up a particular book, but this time in particular it fits. The Kindling is quite out of my genre. It’s a middle grade book, and while there’s nothing wrong with middle grade, I just sometimes struggle with my YA books being a little too young and not enough adult. So that being said, this is not my favorite genre, and I’m fine with that.
Anyway. I read the description when I was checking out the NetGalley catalog and decided to request it because it sounded Harry Potter-esque. *TIME OUT* No one bite my head off or anything. I’m not at all comparing this book to Harry Potter. To be honest, it’s not even in the same league. That’d be like comparing watermelons to onions (for those who know my food preferences…a very fitting contrast). However, I did ask myself, “Self, if you read the description of Harry Potter would you have wanted to read it without knowing anything else about it?” And the answer to that would have been, “No, not really,” and in fact it did take me quite a while before I jumped onto the HP train. But everyone keep on your chill pants, I’m not done. There were plenty of other books I felt the same way about. Basing off the description alone, I figured they just weren’t for me. However, having read many now that have surprised me, I’ve learned that I can’t always judge a book by its description. (Covers are absolutely okay to judge by though—in case you were wondering.)
So anyways, more to the point. I asked myself if I would like this and I said “Maybe not, but it’s worth a shot. I have been surprised before. Maybe this will be another.” And was it? Not really. There was something about this book that kept me reading and kept the feelings of needing to close it and read something else at bay. Yet, I can’t say I was completely impressed.
The characters are juvenile (yet they’re supposed to be considering their ages). Nothing earth shattering or major plot-twisty happened. The good guys kick booty with middle-grade “magic” (except not really “magic”). The bad guys were bad yet conveniently were less bad at the necessary parts.
In short, it was just okay. If I were between the ages of 10 and 14 it might not have felt lacking to me at all. I gave it a shot, I’m glad I did. But now I’m ready to return to the world of adults and youngish adults. So The Kindling gets a very low 3 Stars.
Have you read The Kindling? If so, what did you think? Let me know!