'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Tuesday 28 December 2010

Review: Fire Lizard: Samurai Kids #5

I have to say, I have so intensely enjoyed this amazing series by the talented Sandy Fussell, it's difficult to keep reviewing these books without sounding sychophantic. But truly, the goodness just keeps coming - five books into the series (of hopefully many more).

The Samurai Kids of the Cockroach Ryu find themselves in Korea for this fifth instalment, after a series of adventures in China, and the challenges just keep coming.

Book Five is all about lesson-learning, and when one-armed Mikko, with the spirit of the striped gecko, is chosen as an apprentice by Ki-Yaga's former teacher, Pak Cho, his learning lessons come thick and fast.

Travelling through the Nine Valleys to Daeheon City to deliver a message from the Hwarang warriors, the samurai kids and their skills are put to the test when they become caught in the middle of local unrest.

Can the cockroaches adapt their old ways to embrace the new? And can they defeat Hyo Moon and help save the valleys?

Written with the sensitivity, finesse and linguistic beauty that is Fussell, Fire Lizard is a book adults will appreciate as much as children. Despite a visually evocative storyline, the text is once again perfectly complemented by the dynamic and lyrical work of Rhian Nest James.

Fussell continues to build intensity, dynamics and sentiment in her Samurai Kids series - with a sophistication that enhances the inherent (and kid-favoured) action and brilliant humour. Effortless Emotive Entertaining. Bring on no.6, Ms Fussell. I'm waiting with the patience of a Samurai Kid.

Title: Samurai Kids: Fire Lizard
Author: Sandy Fussell
Illustrator: Rhian Nest James
Publisher: Walker Books, $14.95
Publication Date: 1 September 2010
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781921529467
For ages: 8+
Type: Fiction