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117 of 118 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Golden Acorn - a must read!
The diminishing magical world is on the verge of disappearing forever, and Jack Brenin, born at sunset on Samhain and the only mortal able to see the Golden Acorn, is the last hope...

When I buy books for my younger relatives, I always read the first few pages or first chapter, to be sure it's suitable. When I started to read this, I just couldn't stop and had...
Published on 22 Sep 2010 by Lucy Lavande

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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "The Adventures of Jack Brenin" series book 1
Jack Brenin is miserable. Growing up in Greece, he's been shipped off to Glasruhen Village to live with his Grandad following his mother's death. He's lonely, misses his dad who is still in Greece, and is now the target of a group of bullies. Yet from the day a golden acorn bounces of his head, Jack discovers he is prophesised to carry out a very important task...
Published on 21 Nov 2010 by Book Addict


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117 of 118 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Golden Acorn - a must read!, 22 Sep 2010
By 
Lucy Lavande (North Yorkshire) - See all my reviews
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The diminishing magical world is on the verge of disappearing forever, and Jack Brenin, born at sunset on Samhain and the only mortal able to see the Golden Acorn, is the last hope...

When I buy books for my younger relatives, I always read the first few pages or first chapter, to be sure it's suitable. When I started to read this, I just couldn't stop and had to have it for myself!
The magical fantasy genre is rather saturated at the moment, so when something like The Golden Acorn comes along, its pages packed with an enthralling and original story, its quality stands out like a beacon. The magic here is that of British folklore, of Druids and dryads, of water nymphs and talking ravens, and hedgerows that open and close behind you to reveal a hidden path to an enchanted wood. The story has vividly drawn, believable characters such as the instantly likeable, self-doubting but still willing hero, Jack Brenan, and a gloriously bad tempered talking raven. The settings and sights are deftly described and paint a perfect picture in the imagination. If you're thinking of buying this book, I recommend that you do so. There's no reading age guide, but I would guess around age 9+, plus adults such as myself who enjoy really well written fantasy stories. A beautiful book and just the thing for the dark, chilly evenings ahead.

The inclusion of 'The Adventures of Jack Brenin' in the title suggests more to come, I do hope so!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely!, 24 Jun 2011
By 
MJ King "MJK" (Birmingham, England) - See all my reviews
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So many good reviews for this book already so I'll keep mine short.

A well researched book, with simple but effective characterisation and believable dialogue. The story is interesting and involving and should appeal to young readers with an interest in Roman Britain.

It's aimed. I'd guess, at junior school aged kids though it could be read to younger ones who'd enjoy the stories especially the talking birds, magic and funny troll like 'baddies'.

I'm an adult with a long standing love of fantasy (Tolkien, Donaldson etc) but I really enjoyed this book and here's why:

I found it a lovely book in the sense of the warmth and feeling of safety and love that runs thru the entire book!

Reminded me of half forgotten, half true memories of my childhood. All about innocence and happy endings. There is danger and suspense, the 'hero' knows some sadness in his life and there are some 'baddies' in the book but ..................you never doubt that 'good' will prevail at the end!

100% recommended for younger readers and jaded, older one's in search of some innocent escapism from our dreary, recession filled world!

Oh, and the follow up - Glasruhen Gate - is just as good!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magical (review on behalf of my nine year old), 8 Oct 2012
By 
frenchie - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Golden Acorn: Book 1 (UK EDITION) (The Adventures of Jack Brenin) (Kindle Edition)
My 9 year old daughter just finished The Golden Acorn. It has been there on her kindle for quite a few months, as she prefers animal stories, and she thought it was a ''boys book''. But she surprised me tonight by asking me to buy another ''Jack Brenin'' book. I asked her why, and she said it was wonderful and she liked it very much and it is magical.
When I asked her to write a review she said she did not want to but I was to say it is a five stars. Jack is ace.
So, here I am, dutifully rating it 5 stars and I have also just bought her Glasruhen Gate: The Adventures of Jack Brenin, Book 2 as she requested.
I hope she will enjoy it as much as she did the first one.
I shall read them both myself later on and add my impressions to this review.
I originally bought The Golden Acorn on the strength of all good reviews and I felt safe not to read it first. I am not disappointed. Thank you to all people who reviewed it before me.
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28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A really enjoyable read., 28 Dec 2010
By 
Shaun Horrigan "Shaun" (London) - See all my reviews
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This was the first book I read on my new Kindle. I have to admit that I picked it because it was free at the time I got it, but now I have finished it I would highly recommend it!

I usually read science fiction, but for a change I also enjoy fantasy and children's books.

This book reminds me of some of Philip Pullman's works for younger readers such as I was a Rat and that really can't be a bad thing!

The story contains many of the standards in fantasy writing, a quest, druids, witches, a dragon, magical rituals and many other things to capture the interest of young enquiring minds.

After reading The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell many years ago I always enjoy seeing variations on the classic "Hero cycle" and this book fits nicely.

One thing that this book has in addition to those more usual themes is a flight back in time to Roman Britain! This I felt was the highlight of the book and very nicely done indeed. I can imagine children who have no interest in history being keen to find out more about the Romans in Britain after reading this book.

If I had any writing skill at all, this would be the sort of book I would have loved to have written.

All in all a very enjoyable read and an impressive first novel!

A well deserved five stars.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A lovely read.......Magical........, 12 Dec 2010
By 
mandynolan "mandynolan" - See all my reviews
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I really enjoyed this book from the start.

It is about Jack a little boy who has moved back to England from Greece. He is staying with his Grandfather and it seems a family tragedy has taken place.

The book has lots of magic in it and I was reminded of reading the Narnia series as a child.( although it is not as genius as them!!!)

It is the sort of story where the child is at the centre and all these amazing things happen and they just accept them.

The illustrations at the start of the book are charming, I always love to see a map of a place at the start of a story!!!

It is an adventure to help the trees and I think it would appeal to readers 9 and above, or younger if read to by your parents.

I really enjoyed this book and recommend it as a good adventure story set in England and full of magic.......Excellent, BUY IT!!!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the best book!, 14 Jan 2012
This review is from: The Golden Acorn: Book 1 (UK EDITION) (The Adventures of Jack Brenin) (Kindle Edition)
When I first saw the book on my kindle I thought it would not be good but I read it anyway.But when I read it I loved the book so much I lent my kindle to my mum so she could read it!It was the best book I ever read!Now I am searching for new books in the Jack Brenin series.I wanted to tell my friends to read the book.I wanted everyone in the whole wide world to read the book!
kt age 9
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excewllent read, even for a 40 year old !, 13 Jan 2012
This review is from: The Golden Acorn: Book 1 (UK EDITION) (The Adventures of Jack Brenin) (Kindle Edition)
Loved it. I am 40 years old so not the target market, but i loved the book. could not but it down and will be looking at the rest of the series. It is also something i will read to my children as they grow up.

Powerful story.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THE GOLDEN ACORN REWIEW, 19 May 2011
By 
Absolutely wonderful book especially for youngster's wanting to get their adventure reading off the ground,my Wife loved it hence the reason for purchasing the paperback edition so that she could give it our Grandaughter.TJ120.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An enchanting tale (KINDLE VERSION), 28 Feb 2011
By 
Bob (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Golden Acorn: Book 1 (UK EDITION) (The Adventures of Jack Brenin) (Kindle Edition)
This is how Kindle books should be produced complete with maps and line drawings which you can zoom in for more detail. For some strange reason it opened at the start of the story so unless you go to menu and select the map or page backwards from the start you will miss the delightful maps.
This is a children's book in the tradition of the Enid Blyton books such as the "faraway tree" and although at the end there is some violence it is suitable for all ages, a welcome change. With talking animals, birds, trees and even time travel there is something for everyone and although it has a basic quest theme it is well written. It is book one of a series but it stands alone and although it is set up at the end for the next book there are no loose ends that require the next book to be read although you should.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "The Adventures of Jack Brenin" series book 1, 21 Nov 2010
By 
Book Addict - See all my reviews
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Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Jack Brenin is miserable. Growing up in Greece, he's been shipped off to Glasruhen Village to live with his Grandad following his mother's death. He's lonely, misses his dad who is still in Greece, and is now the target of a group of bullies. Yet from the day a golden acorn bounces of his head, Jack discovers he is prophesised to carry out a very important task.

Soon Jack is equipped with his own Book of Shadows (cleverly updated by the author), his own wand and under the tutelage of ancient Druid Nora and Camelin, a talking raven; learning how to shape shift into a bird in order to fly into the past to retrieve 3 missing parts of a cauldron. Without the missing parts, Arrana the last living Hamadryad (a wood spirit) on Earth will die, resulting in the deaths of all the tree spirits in the surrounding forests.

This is a sweet tale with an interesting blend of Celtic and Greek mythology. There are some clever ideas, some great characters (such as Camelin and members of the Night Guard) and a few really exciting moments towards the end. One part of story conclusively ends, yet there is plenty left unfinished for part 2 of this series; "Glasruhen Gate" due for publication in Feb 2011. Now my gripes. "The Golden Acorn" is a rather sedate fantasy adventure. It is very slow moving as the majority of the plot follows Jack's training, and the book is almost over before he actually travels to the past to accomplish his mission. He also never faces any real danger or adversity until the final few chapters. In fact the face offs with enemies whilst Jack is in training are quite tame, such as threatening to scorch the bad guy's bottom or changing the shape of his nose whilst these initial villains; the Bogie and the Spriggans, are more comical than scary.

Although Jack is the hero of this book, throughout the majority of the story line he seems to remain on the peripheral of the action. He doesn't help with the retrieval of the golden acorn (doh why leave it unattended in his bedroom?) and apart from some random moments, it is Nora that is solving everything thrown his way and generally saving the day. Lastly there is no real sense of wonder from Jack as he is introduced to a magical world. A golden acorn, shape shifting, dryads, nymphs and a mission to travel into the past are met so matter-of-factly that I was left wondering what Jack had been getting up to in Greece to be so blasé.
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