Saturday, November 19, 2016

The Whizbang Machine by Danielle A. Vann

Genre: Middle Grade, Young Adult, Fantasy, Adventure
Source: I received a copy to facilitate my review. The opinions expressed here are my own.

Synopsis from Goodreads:
After years of running from his tragic past, Jack Yale books a flight home. With him is a typewriter that is intended to be a gift for his granddaughter, Elizabeth. The minute Elizabeth’s fingers cradle the large black and cream keys the machine responses: popping, sizzling, and roaring to life with a Whiz-Whiz-BANG! Elizabeth quickly discovers the typewriter has powers beyond anything she has ever seen. The more she types, the more the machine spells out guarded secrets that need to be revealed in order to set history straight and remove a curse that has been on their family for centuries. To solve the mystery, Elizabeth Yale, alongside Jack, will have to crack the code of the Whizbang Machine. What they find challenges their most basic assumptions of their family, the history of the typewriter, and even Elizabeth’s father’s death. The ultimate goal is to remove the curse. The question is: will Jack and Elizabeth be able to carry out their mission?

My Thoughts:
Any time I can read a book that is so clean, yet so adventurous, it is a win-win situation. It is a win for me because I can recommend it to my students and parents. It is a win for my students because they are in for an adventure they won’t want to end. Most young kids have never seen or touched a typewriter. They may have seen pictures. They have so many different fonts available with computers today. The author used old typewriter font throughout the book so the reader knows when the typewriter is putting out a message.  This is what I call charming. One of my students thought it was cool because they had seen papers at their grandmother’s house that looked the same.

The adventures keep readers turning the pages. They are carried along on the adventure. The reader never feels like they are on the outside of the story reading along. It is more a feeling of traveling with Jack and Elizabeth as a third member.  It has a creepy, mysterious feel to it. These are all elements I love in a book.  I kept thinking about the dangerous aspects they find themselves in and if I would be the kind of grandparent to go on that adventure with a grandchild. I’d like to think I am adventurous enough I would, or that my grandchildren could persuade me to.  I definitely recommend this book to young and old alike. There are so many great things about it. You have a curse, a mystery, travel, history, and one adventure after another. I am definitely anxiously waiting for the next book by this author.

You can find out more about the author here:

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