- Format: Kindle Edition
- File Size: 573 KB
- Print Length: 148 pages
- Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1540350584
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publisher: Bree Wolf (4 Dec. 2013)
- Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00FJ7S3OY
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Average Customer Review: 4 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #12,183 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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|Print List Price:||£4.99|
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Fireflies: A Tale of Life and Death (Heroes Next Door Series Book 1) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 148 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||Age Level: 9 - 18||Grade Level: 4 - 12|
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Top Customer Reviews
It’s a book that gave our on-line reading group a huge range of responses. I found it read well, the kids were believable in their own ways, and didn’t notice any particular dialogue difficulties, unlike other members of the group. I wondered whether people expected all the kids to speak in the way their own did, or whether there is a ‘standard US kid speak’ outside which kids who copy their elders’ speech patterns are thought to be peculiar. Maybe I read it in a different accent – which is certainly the case. I thoroughly enjoyed the story, and the writing, which risked getting mawkish at times, but managed not to turn me off, which was a great feat!
It’s a lovely story, which risks being one of those ‘misfit finds friendship’ tropes, but pulls out with powerful writing and keen visualisation. I could certainly feel the heat, see the river and the woods, and the potential for adventure. Hannah’s adventure is particularly well handled.
Easy to read, and with engaging characters, Bree Wolf guides the young reader through the trials and tribulations of a young boy's summer of self-discovery.
The plot is interesting, and full of fun, but the story also presents more serious issues with a sensitivity suitable for the younger reader.
I would have loved to read this, as a child, and I would highly recommend it.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)
I’ve now caught onto the trend—that is the trend in most of the self-published works I review—and Fireflies is no different…sadly. With most books of this fashion, the author has a bit of talent with words and strings lines together decently, sometimes very well. This author, too, exemplifies this.
Even in broad daylight the house seemed haunted. Most of the paint was peeled off, giving the wood a run-down impression. Bushes and trees, not to mention the lawn, grew in wild abundance. They hadn’t seen shears or a lawn mower in years.
She gives us what any good writer should: details. She paints a picture…and then things go awry. The fault in a lot of indie works is not necessarily the moments of description, but dialog. Here, too, I find it difficult to believe any child, no matter what age, consistently speaks like these kids do.
“She told me she would die.”
“That’s not true. You understood her wrong.”
I don’t know how, but it feels scripted or what someone would expect another person to say without delving into the emotions of another…or at times, it was just straight up filler. Overall, it really brought me down and irked me most of the time.
Here I encountered another common problem with these books: too many characters. We get a good sense of Gabriel from the beginning—a shy introvert. Cool. Even though his parents aren’t one hundred percent fleshed out, seeing they send him off soon and disappear from the story, it’s forgiveable.
But upon making new friends in the little burg he ends up in, we are bombarded with names and new characters aplenty, among them are—if I remember—Eddie, Jordan, Liam, and Jack. We meet others, but initially this is the crew he hangs with. Beyond their names each character is given one identifying trait that they repeat incessantly in order to…characterize? I’m not sure.
If anything the author should have trimmed one or two characters out, especially after yet another character, Hannah, joins. By the end, they are like one large roaming gang of kids—which though it reminds me of my hometown youth, it doesn’t pan out well when the characters can’t develop well.
The story, per se, wasn’t bad. As far as middle grade goes, there is a lot of range within this group. That being said, this book feels like it belongs at the lower end of the age range. The story is not particularly difficult or well developed and can be easily read by younger readers. For older ones—as in fifth grade reading level or higher—they might find it a bit tedious and unbelievable, as I did.
Not only that, but I also found the movement of the plot and the unraveling of the riddles a bit ridiculous, but this was only further exaggerated by the tragic dialog. If their conversations were a bit more sparkling, quite possibly the transitions from one scene to another wouldn’t feel so poorly done. To be honest, I can’t say.
It may have sounded like a bad review, but in the end—a week after having read it—I don’t have hateful memories of the book as I’ve had with much worse reads. The idea and attempt was good. There were just too many skipped parts that lowered the book in my opinion as a whole. Like I said, too many characters made everyone seem flat and lifeless, while the watered-down, I-think-a-kid-would-talk-like-this dialog really dampened my overall impression. But…the author seems to be figuring out what needs to be done. Maybe in the future she’ll hit the right mix of every element. As for this one, I’d say it was a miss.
Gabriel, a 12 year old city boy, spends the summer at his grandparents' house in a small town. He joins forces with a group of local kids, riding bikes and swimming in the local swimming hole. But when Gabriel meets Hannah, he truly learns the impact that one person can have on another's life.
It wasn't. It was much more.
It was a page-turning coming of age story about a boy who was uncomfortable in his own skin. He eventually sheds that skin to meet new friends. With those new friends, he finds he can find his own "adventures". Each character is very well fleshed out. I can put a faces from my own childhood on many of them. Fireflies is a book I'd recommend to anyone at any age (especially those who have ever felt isolated). In fact, I'm going to request it at my local library.