Thursday, March 22, 2012

Review of The Invisible Tower by Nils Johnson-Shelton

Title/Author: The Invisible Tower (Otherworld Chronicles #1) by Nils Johnson-Shelton
Publisher/Date published: HarperCollins, January 3rd 2012
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley

Goodreads summary: "Part of the spell has already been broken.
The first stones have begun to crumble.
In Artie Kingfisher’s world, wizards named Merlin, fire-breathing dragons, and swords called Excalibur exist only in legends and lore — until the day his video game Otherworld springs to life.
You are special, Arthur,
Says the mysterious message in his game.
In one week’s time you will come to me at the it.
Cryptic clues lead Artie to a strange place called the Invisible Tower, where he discovers that nothing in his life is as it seems. Artie is none other than King Arthur, brought to life in the twenty-first century. Artie has won the battle in the virtual Otherworld — now the key to saving the real Otherworld lies in his hands as well.
Green dragons, hungry wolves, powerful sorcerers — suddenly Artie must battle them all as he wields Excalibur and embarks on a quest worthy of the Knights of the Round Table. With his sister, Kay, by his side, Artie steps into the Otherworld — straight toward his destiny."

This was a pretty sweet book. I was really interested in reading this one because I LOVE everything about the Arthurian legend. I'll admit it, I'm an Arthur junkie. And a modern twist with a video game entering into it sounded really exciting :)

And it was a sweet book and I thought how Johnson-Shelton incorporated the myth into The Invisible Tower was pretty good in my opinion. It had enough of the original thing and also a definite touch from the author.

Things happen with enough speed to keep me interested but it wasn't so fast it felt rushed. I was however a bit shocked at some of the stuff happening, I mean, I thought this was a children's book and it had some pretty gruesome stuff in it that would have scared me as a kid. I mean, I know the original story is not without major shedding of blood, but I hadn't expected it in The Invisible Tower so much.

The characters were nice, I really liked that Kay, Artie's sister, was a major part of the action and not just a sidekick. I really liked the familybonds! There's some real love between the siblings and their father and I loved it! And I really liked the supporting characters, they were so cute! I am sort of questioning one major characters motives, but I can't tell you who because I might spoil something...

While there The Invisible Tower definitely had some really good qualities, I didn't feel very excited while reading it. I'm not exactly sure why that is, but I didn't really feel the urge to keep reading. I do think this is a fun way for kids to learn about the Arthurian legend, though I'm still partial to the original tale (which scared the crap out of me as a kid, good times).

My rating: 3 stars


  1. Sounds like a cute book for the younger crowd, I'm a big fan of all things arthurian, too but yeah, I would probably would have a hard time keeping engaged with the story.

  2. Great review. Sounds interesting too bad it wasn't a page-turner though. I hadn't heard of this one before. I don't read a lot of MG books but when i do I usually enjoy them.

  3. Aww, this sounds cute! I'd recommend this to a few other readers I know.