Jack Death by M.l. WindsorJack Death by M.l. Windsor

Jack Death

byM.l. Windsor

Hardcover | September 23, 2016

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Jack is an ordinary boy except that his father happens to be Death. Nadine is a perfectly normal girl except that her Mother is ? oh well, that's a Secret and not to be carelessly revealed on the back cover of a book. The important thing is that together, these two incredibly average children discover the lemon-headed villain behind the destruction of the Magical Creature Reserve and piece together his plot to divide the Golden and Black Bloods. They may even save a few lives.With story elements reminiscent of Percy Jackson and Lemony Snicket, flavored with a smattering of Harry Potter and Terry Pratchett and recounted in an arch, tongue-firmly-in-cheek style, this story will find an eager audience in upper elementary through middle school.The intrusive and mysterious narrator provides know-it-all asides and rich vocabulary as background to the abundant action. There is plenty of comic violence and slapstick to keep the most reluctant reader engaged, but enough interesting language and subtlety that a more bookish reader won't feel underestimated. Stock characters - the school bully, the absent-minded professor, the damsel in distress - often turn out to have more to them that first meets the eye.
A 2012 Harvard graduate and full-time writer,M.L. Windsor develops content for educational test prep companies and freelances for publishers, including a micropress and literary journal calledMidwestern Gothic.
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Title:Jack DeathFormat:HardcoverDimensions:165 pages, 7.84 × 6.08 × 0.73 inPublished:September 23, 2016Publisher:Creston BooksLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1939547288

ISBN - 13:9781939547286

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Reviews

Editorial Reviews

The offspring of Death and the child of Mother Earth take on a whole bunch of bad guys in this opener to a new series. Jack (Death's kid) and his neighbor Nadine (Mother Earth's daughter) aren't planning to get in the middle of a brewing controversy around non-human creatures, but they're concerned about the Fixers and their goal to divide everyone into two groups, with different treatment depending on where you fall (it seems primarily based on the creatures that exist in your family trees). When the new friends are split up, they decide this dubious ethnographic division is reprehensible, and they fight back. Windsor keeps this novel free of overt gore and adds bits of whimsical humor to leaven the darkness of the plot. . . .A snappy, quick paced conclusion puts all in the right place - with the bad guys vanquished, the neighbors now solidly aligned as friends (and both headed off to a boarding school, Magic Hallows), and everything lined up for a sequel.Wow!!! I could not put this book down. Jack Death is so CLEVER!!!!! I love the voice, style and tone." - Marla Conn, ReadAbility"The debut novel Jack Death by M.L. Windsor is a middle grade chapter book set in a world populated by humans, magical creatures, and humans with some magical creature ancestry. Problems arise when evil forces incite one group to rise up against another and Jack sets out to rescue his new friend Nadine. With story elements reminiscent of Percy Jackson and Lemony Snicket flavored with a smattering of Harry Potter and Terry Pratchett, and recounted in a short-sentence Captain Underpants style, the book will find an eager audience in upper elementary through middle school.The intrusive narrator provides know-it-all asides and background to the abundant action. There is plenty of comic violence and slapstick to keep even a reluctant reader engaged but enough interesting language and subtlety that the more bookish kid will not feel underestimated. Stock characters - the school bully, the absentminded professor, the damsel in distress - often turn out to have more to them than first meets the eye. The book is more fun than philosophy but it is grounded in positive values (our damsel steps up and takes care of matters herself, thank you very much). If Jack Death turns out to be the first in a series the door is open for many more adventures as Jack and Nadine head off to a boarding school for semi-magical beings.A great choice for fans of Lemony Snicket and Percy Jackson."Lorna MacIver, Librarian, American International School in Egypt"It's not every day that your best friend gets eaten by a troll and the wall around the reserve containing gruesome magical creatures comes down unleashing evil on your town. Jack may be the son of Death but can he save the lives of friends and family before the Grim Reapers snatch up their souls? Windsor's debut Middle-Grade novel is full of twists and turns and secrets that keep you turning pages to find out how it all turns out in the end." - Alyson Beecher, Kid Lit Frenzy"Mix a pinch of Percy Jackson, a touch of the Baudelaire children, a tad of Goosebumps, an action-packedstoryline with cliffhangers, humor, and a car chase, and a whole lot of rich vocabulary delivered in short chapters and you get an idea of what's bubblin' in Jack Death. The non-stop action and drama with great descriptive passages and derring-do will keep readers engaged as Jack and Nadine dash, dart and dive, gulping great gasps of air to escape bullies, trolls, ogres, and just plain old bad guys. Like me, they'll be hooked and won't put it down!" - Stephanie Bange, Director, Educational Resource Center, Wright State University"Jack Death is a little bit Lemony Snicket, and a little bit of The Munsters, but with a lovable hero and unique concept that are all its own. Quirky, charming, and delightful to read, Jack Death is unlike any children's book I've read this year. I only hope that there's a sequel in the works!" - Rebekah Hendrian, The Book Nook and Java Shop"Jack Death is full of twists that are funny, deadly, or both at once. I love how the narrator is a character, but not a main character. I also really like how much the narrator talks directly to the reader." -Zora, age 11"Death's 10-year-old son and a risky new friend take on a cabal of genocidal racists in this lighthearted debut.It all starts when a troll escapes from the local reserve and eats Booger Reynolds in the school lunchroom. Jack Hallows' determination to discover who let the creature out takes him and eager neighbor Nadine Jang ("I've read all the Sherlock Holmes and Sammy Keyes books and-") straight into a mass exodus of inimical ogres and the like. Following the town's hasty concentration intoan evacuation center, there's a general sorting of the hybrid human residents by sinister Fixers into those of Golden and Black bloodlines (according to what creatures are in their family trees). The Goldens, including a reluctant Nadine, are brusquely bussed off. Jack, a Black, follows. These dismal doings are related by a digressive narrator who turns out t o be one of Jack's absentee dad's Reaper minions. Just to keep tongue firmly planted in cheek, Windsor also tucks in silly names (Urkel Underbottom is the requisite bully), clueless grown-ups, and numerous cookies while leaving out any mention of blood or gore. As it turns out, Nadine has a secret parent nearly as powerful as Jack's, and by the end, the two have been trucked off to a very special boarding school called Magic Hallows. Jack appears white, and Nadine seems to be at least partly Asian. Comfortably familiar and well-executed series tropes make this funny romp one readers will want a sequel to. (Fantasy. 10-13)" - Kirkus Reviews "Original, entertaining, deftly crafted." - Midwest Book Review"A darkly comic fantasy about a couple of kids who are not quite human in a world that divides the magical from the mundane in a drastic way. Jack Death reminds me of the Terry Pratchett books I love, not just the wry humor, fast pace and wordplay but also the surprisingly philosophical theme." - Clare Doornbos, Diesel Bookstore"A fantastical tale full of magical creatures, bloodlines, secrets, and suspense. The illustrations at the beginning of each chapter are a perfect touch to the quirky humor in this book. The story tells how. . .one can find friends in the most unlikely of places. Recommended" - School Library Connection"Hilarious, morbid, and compulsively readable. . . a fun middle-grade novel that will open up some good discussions. I'd booktalk this and display it with the Series of Unfortunate Events series; throw in some David Walliams and Roald Dahl to talk about dry humor, too." - Mom Read It "Jack Death is a new middle grade novel from a new voice - a strange, compelling voice that will have you on the edge of your seat crying and laughing or laughing but not crying. Who this narrator? And why is he following Jack? Whoever he (or she?) is, they have the quirkiest voice in middle grade right now. The narrator knows more about Jack than Jack himself does. Charged with both Jack's story and his safety, keeps he, she, or it very invested. The narrator is only one of many unanswered questions, perfect for a first book in a serial story - if this is a series. I certainly hope Jack Death is but book one of a three or four book series. Any mystery, which can capture the imaginations of both middle grade readers and reluctant readers, is a series needed in the genre. The premise is original and creative. The villains are just who readers of these tales enjoy seeing toppled. But the toppling is a slow process. I love the secrets Jack and Nadine must keep, though Nadine's is less plausible than Jack's is. The reading is fast-paced with short chapters and quirky characters. Reluctant readers will enjoy this aspect of Jack Death. They will also enjoy Professor Blunderbunn, a most peculiar character, if not the quirkiest in the story. Blunderbunn is the reluctant hero to Jack's cause, but who is he? Jack Death will grip kids quickly. The hook will grab hold of kids on the first page and they will not be able to put the story down until . . . the end of the book, of course. The ending to Jack Death can only be satisfying IF there is another story on the way. There is so much yet to tell. Nadine's secret eventually shows itself, but Jack's . . . we only hear about it. Without Jack confronting this secret, his story is incomplete. One note for concerned parents: Death occurs frequently in Jack Death, but there are no gruesome scenes or nightmarish situations. Driving up and down the curving mountain road is more dangerous and scary than any other scene. Kids shouldnot have any nightmares or horrible dreams after reading Jack Death, which is actually a quite thrilling bedtime story." - Kid Lit Reviews"