Review Blog

Nov 12 2015

Unofficial Minecrafter's adventure series by Winter Morgan

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The skeletons strike back, book five. ISBN 9781408869680
Clash of the creepers, book six. ISBN 9781408869697
(Ages: 7-12) These are installments 5 and 6 in the An Unofficial Gamer's Adventure series of easy novels, based on the popular computer/device game Minecraft.
Set in the Minecraft world as found in the game, Steve and friends continue their adventures, fighting off skeletons and creepers and hunting for treasure. My children, aged 9 and 11 polished off these two books in under an hour and found them engrossing. It's a fun, effective way to build on kids' love of the computer game to get them into reading. Knowledge of the game and the different creatures involved is a must, as I found it confusing trying to work out what a 'griefer' is, for example. My children also found there were too many characters, as the protagonist Steve is joined by a seemingly unending host of friends and other hangers-on throughout the stories. That said they are fast paced and well written with sound adventure plots.
In Clash of the creepers, Steve's friends convince him to leave the farm even though the treasure map they've been given could just be a fake. I think it's the mystery and adventure that gets young readers hooked after just a few pages. Just as players navigate the dangers of the Minecraft world, so do the characters in the book. Ultimately the friends decide to use the diamond treasure to help the village and the baddies even see the error of their ways. These themes of teamwork and helping others will appeal most to readers 12 and under.
Jessica Smith

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