Monday, 16 September 2019

Paul Mason (Author), Katy Riddell (Illustrator) - The International Yeti Collective - Book Review - Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Books

The International Yeti Collective is the first installment in a brand new series by Paul Mason. The book will swing its way from fantasy into reality on 17th October, 2019. It is being published by the mighty Stripes Publishing Company. The finished copy has been beautifully illustrated by Katy Riddell, daughter of the former Children's Laureate, Chris Riddell. Unfortunately, the illustrations are missing from my advanced copy, however, the book cover image is absolutely fantastic. It invites the reader into a wild adventure that is a real delight and a joy to read. 

The story instantly transports the reader to the fantastic backdrop of the Himalayas in search of the elusive Yeti. The author draws upon these mythical creatures to whip up the fantasy and get the reader galloping through the pages. He has crafted a brilliant backdrop which may have been inspired from his home (an island in New Zealand). As you follow Ella and her broadcasting explorer uncle, you will be hurtled into a thrilling action-adventure that covers many themes that are incredibly relevant and topical today. The story playfully brings attention to climate change, habitat destruction, and other ecological themes. This underlying message is cleverly woven into the fabric of the story and will resonate with many readers. 

The split narrative will cleverly show you both sides of the story as the rolling mist and the snap of twigs take you into a land of escapism.  You only have to turn the first pages before being introduced to the main character Tick and the secretive collective. Unfortunately, the lovable character and his inquisitive mind put all of the Yetis in danger. When humans arrive on the mountainside, he finds himself peering through the trees to get a closer look. Tick knows it's against Yeti law to approach humans as it threatens the existence of Yeti all over the world and the natural balance of nature they bring to the planet. However, he just can't help himself!

This is a fantastic family read full of hairy warmth, hope, friendship and putting things right within the world. You will experience an uplifting and heartfelt plot packed full of excitement and exhilarating moments. The story is easy to read and full of wit, empathy, and humour. The story is imaginative and very cleverly written. I loved the broadcasting angle of the story which brings it all neatly together and creates some fantastically surreal moments. I also loved the reference and introduction to some of the nineteen different Yeti setts as highlighted in the Encyclopedia Yetannica! This is a great book for discussion both in the classroom and at home. I certainly can't wait for the next book in the series - I'm eagerly anticipating a fantastic sequel. 

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