Averil : The Master of Callus by John Barwick

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Averil, book 1. Big Sky Publishing, 2018. ISBN 9781925675177
(Age: 12+) John Barwick is a widely published author of children's information resources, many of which I have used personally for my own children's education and recommended to students and teachers. John has beenshortlisted in the CBC Book of the Year Awards and in The Australian Awards for Excellence in Educational Publishing.
In this first book of the Averil trilogy series, we travel with newly appointed Trader-Diplomat, fourteen year old Averil, on her first trading expedition. From Averil's small desert town of Aum to the barren rocks of Lenir Pass to Eulal and Taalmouth... and then back again, Averil and her companions search out the evil encompassing the lands.
Unfortunately, the author's skill in documenting detail in its entirety has been at the sacrifice to the story so the plot seemed to move slowly. Trees, rocks and hills were described in so many ways at the detriment of developing the characters and their plight.
John's latest venture into junior fantasy fiction definitely reflects his experience as a non-fiction writer of popular educational resources.
Books 2 and 3 have been published.
Sharon Smith