Today is my stop on the blog tour for The Mostly Invisible Boy by AJ Vanderhorst, and I am excited to be sharing my review with you all.
A massive thank you to @The_WriteReads for allowing me to be a part of the tour, and for providing me with a copy of the book, in exchange for an honest review.
Eleven-year-old Casey is stubbornly friendly, but he’s eternally the new kid at Vintage Woods Middle School. Students look right through him—and they’re not faking. Casey doesn’t know why he’s mostly-invisible, but when he scales a colossal oak, he discovers a fortress in its branches. The forgotten sentry tree marks the border between his safe, suburban life and a fierce frontier.
Casey and his little sister Gloria infiltrate Sylvan Woods, a secret forest society devoted to ancient, wild things. Sky-high footpaths. Survival sewing. Monster control. Shockingly, people here actually see Casey—but being seen isn’t enough. He wants to belong.
Keeping his identity hidden–while struggling to prove he fits–is hard enough, but Butcher Beasts have returned to Sylvan Woods after a hundred years. Trickery is under siege. As the monsters close in, and the fearsome Sylvan Watch hunts Casey down, he and his newfound friends must unearth abandoned magic, buried at the forest’s roots…or be devoured along with everyone else, Sylvans and civilians alike.
A fast-paced middle grade fantasy/adventure book with all the monsters kids could ever hope for.
I’m not a huge middle grade reader, but recently (mainly thanks to The Write Reads) I have been reading more middle grade, and I have to say, The Mostly Invisible Boy is one of my favourites so far!
The story starts in an interesting way. You immediately feel sorry for Casey, having to deal with being mostly invisible. He just seems so sad and lonely, and even his parents don’t seem very interested (not that they stick around for that long). But being in the forest seems to be his happy place, and then he discovers the giant oak tree, and his adventure truly begins.
I absolutely love the world that AJ Vanderhorst has created here, he really does have a wonderful imagination. It kind of gives off treetop Percy Jackson vibes, and I am totally here for it. I would love to get lost in the magically treetop world of Sylvan Woods, but I don’t think I’d like to face all of those awful creatures!
There are some great characters and relationships in this story. The best of course has to be the sibling relationship between Casey and Gloria. They are just such a lovely pair, and the way they care for each other is so beautiful. At times I was a little unsure on Luci, but as a whole, I did like her. Robert was an interesting one… Although he’s not exactly a likeable character, he certainly grows as the story continues.
There are a few unanswered questions throughout the book, which I was hoping would be wrapped up in the ending, but weren’t. However, I thought that the ending to this story was really enjoyable. There’s a lot of excitement, and edge of the seat moments throughout the story, and the ending was no different.
This was a fun, exciting, and enjoyable read, and I will definitely be reading the next book in the series, which will hopefully provide some answers to the questions that were left unanswered in this book.
I give The Mostly Invisible Boy a 4.5 star rating!
About The Author:
AJ Vanderhorst has had many jobs, including journalist, paramedic, escape artist, and baby whisperer. One time in fifth grade, he built a traffic-stopping fort in a huge oak tree, using only branches and imagination, and slept there for a week.
Now he and his wife live in a woodsy house with their proteges and a ridiculous number of pets, including a turtle with a taste for human toes.
This makes AJ an expert on wild, dangerous things—invisibility spells, butcher beasts, hungry kids, you get the idea.
He is the only author in the world who enjoys pickup basketball and enormous bonfires, preferably not at the same time. He and his family have drawn up several blueprints for their future tree castle. Visit AJ online at ajvanderhorst.com.
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