Hatter Madigan: Ghost in the H.A.T.B.O.X ( 9+)
By : Frank Beddor & Adrienne Kress
Publisher ; Automatic ( April 2016)
A fast-paced and action packed fantasy adventure with Hatter Madigan; the popular character from Beddor`s best selling "Looking Glass Wars" triology taking the center stage. In the Wonderland where two suns arise and where all the cards from Spades to the Queen of Hearts come alive, it is the duty of the Milinaries to protect their land; the "Wonderland" and the queen.
In the Milinary Academy everybody is expected to be strong and perfect and should be able to contain and control all emotion at all times; there is always the risk of dropping out. Though Hatter does not want to take any chances; no matter how vulnerable he feels he must control his emotions and speed ahead. He is proud of his dear brother and of their parents. He wants to keep up to their reputation. Hatter has been dreaming of becoming a Miliner cadet for so long, and has watched in wonder when his brother slowly grew into become one of the best cadets ever. His brother is the only relative he has since their parents went missing. And now is his chance to shine as he enters the academy but..... when his friends and some of the tutors start to act weird. When unusual things happen in the Academy, Hatter is curious to find the reasons. Will his big "Heart" and overwhelming curiosity completely destroy his hopes to become one of the best cadets.............
It has a touch of Harry Potter in it but with a unique plot which is enthralling, and a vivid yet fascinating array of characters; there is science , magic, ghosts and combat training all in one. One gets to read about the Wonderland`s marvelous thread technology while they witness the parades of flying weapons in combat, crisscrossing card soldiers, Hatter and his team practicing sparring with their holograms, and the Caterpillar tutor - a projection manifested by the oracles- teaching Hatter and his team about the "White imagination". Readers will obviously be blown away by Beddor`s utterly beautiful and powerful imagination!
The Milinary Academy lessons are capable of infusing some fresh philosophical thoughts into young readers while entertaining them immensely. " Thank you cadet Vost / That will do / There are two sides to imagination / and they are the light and the shadow......./ The white and black /Imagination is organic / It grows from within all of us" Characters ranging from the outrageous Rhodes and the Wellingtens, affectionate Astra to wise and blind Newton are all richly illustrated with well described settings.
In the Wonderland, there are no gods but eeries. The eeries write your story and mark the future for you! But Hatter Madigan writes his own story. Is he above the gods or is it because gods have faith in him to protect his land and guard the queen like a true Miliner? The readers without doubt will explore as they will read this hair raising and jaw dropping adventure of Hatter Madigan - in one breath!
I thought that this book is not my type, but I was wrong as I couldn't stop reading it until the end. And my boy, who`s around ten now, simply gobbled it-up!. Just like the hologram characters posses human characters in the story, Hatter Madigan and his team will posses their readers !
( With many thanks to Automatic Publishers and NetGally for the ARC )