on 2 September 2014
This book was recently entered in The Wishing Shelf Book Awards. This iis what our young readers thought:
Author: Saoirse O’Mara
Title: The Lost Diadem
The children thought the cover was very good. They liked the image of the two children and they thought the lettering was age and genre-appropriate. When it was held up to a class, they all guessed correctly that the book was an ‘adventure book for children’.
The children very much enjoyed this story. They liked all the plot twists and they thought the two central characters were interesting and fun to follow. They also thought Govin was resourceful and brave, particularly when he rescued Tayla. They also thought the cliffhanger at the end of the book was well thought out and made them want to read the next book in the set.
The biggest problem was the length of the story. Almost all of the 11 and 12 year olds who read it thought it was way too short and felt frustrated that it ended so soon. Consequently, the children scored it rather low despite the fact that they thought it was good.
The children (and teachers) discovered no grammatical, punctuation of spelling problems in the story. However, they felt it slowed a little in the middle and that a good editor would have insisted you lengthen the story to include more adventure and character development.
The children thought the story flowed very well. They understood all of the words and they liked that there was lots of speech. However, a few thought the two characters spoke in a very similar way. One reader (girl, aged 12) put, ‘Tayla and Govin come from very different backgrounds but they spoke exactly the same way. I thought that was a little strange.’
The plot was very well crafted, the beginning strong, pulling the reader in; the ending enjoyable and fulfilling making the readers want to read a sequel.
Of the 17 readers:
15 liked the cover and the blurb.
17 thought it was too short.
17 finished the story.
15 would like to read the sequel.
9 thought the plot was the best part of the book.
3 felt the central character, Govin, was the best part of the book.
2 thought it was a little slow in the middle.
6 thought the cliffhanger was brill!
‘A fun, exciting adventure. Highly recommended.’ The Wishing Shelf Awards
on 19 January 2014
I really enjoyed what I hope is going to be the start of an exciting series. I loved Govins story and the twists of fate that lead to the adventure he embarks on. It was all very well thought out and moved along nicely with some great characters in support and there is pretty much something for everyone with action, treachery and a little romance brewing away. Easy to recommend to other fans of this genre.