File Size: 3755 KB
Print Length: 198 pages
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Publication Date: December 22, 2013
Sold by: Digital Services LLC
X-Ray: Not Enabled
Word Wise: Enabled
Lending: Not Enabled
Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Best Sellers Rank: #157,529 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store) #4 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Children's eBooks > Literature & Fiction > Historical Fiction > Africa #14 in Books > Children's Books > Literature & Fiction > Historical Fiction > Africa #485 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Children's eBooks > Science Fiction, Fantasy & Scary Stories > Fantasy & Magic > Sword & Sorcery
The Enchanted Castle: Shioni of Sheba is the story of a young white girl named Shioni who has been sold into slavery to the king of West Sheba as an expensive play-thing and future protector for his motherless daughter. The novel takes place during West Sheba's conquest of an adjacent kingdom and while the warriors of the kingdom are in full battle dress and clinking their swords, young Shioni attempts to keep her life simple and focused around her training, being entertaining to her princess, cleaning, doing slave-type duties and learning who she can and cannot trust. Yet she continually finds herself dragged into events of much grander scope, events that may determine the fate of the entire kingdom, events that may hold the lives of all the people around her, including her own.One of the best aspects of this book is the concrete yet dramatic drawing of the gravity of Shioni's situations. Here is one example. As a slave girl, Shioni's movements and whereabouts are restricted so in order to do what she feels is vitally necessary she must continually break the rules and sneak out. This basically risks her life as she would be seen as a runaway slave if she were to be caught before she can sneak back in. I really liked that although what Shioni is doing is for the benefit of everyone she still has to pay the consequences for her disobedience. Too many middle school kid's books have main characters who flaunt the rules and everything turns out grand for them and I have always questioned that message. Here we have a character who certainly breaks rules but with dire consequences and she knows it and she has to answer for her actions.
Recently I have fallen out of love with Middle Grade Fantasy Books. I've lost interest in the obligatory paint-by-numbers format which often involves the typical Coming-of-Age, Ancient Prophecy and The Chosen One storylines. No doubt those are the main attractions to this genre. But there's something very wearisome about picking up a book and knowing exactly how it will turn out because you've read that story a thousand times already.I was a bit apprehensive when I accepted the chance to read this book and would probably have passed on it if not for the unique African setting which is practically never used in a children's fantasy book. Having now read this book from cover-to-cover, I am thankful that I didn't make that mistake.The Enchanted Castle, Book One of the Shioni of Sheba series, is a very magical and spellbinding tale. Every page is bursting with fun and excitement. The story moves quickly, but is richly narrated. I hadn't heard of or previously encountered the legends that inspire this book. But it wasn't hard to figure out that the story had roots in the folktales of the ancient peoples of sub-Saharan Africa. This authenticity lends not only credibility to the story, but helps to give it its richness.I am impressed with the writing style of the author. The prose is very inviting and suitable for children and adults alike. Despite the exotic setting and ancient landscape, the characters feel very familiar. You can relate to the plight of Shioni, the young slave girl who is the central figure in this series. The supporting cast is equally delightful.
The Enchanted Castle (Shioni of Sheba Book 1) The King's Horse (Shioni of Sheba Book 2) The Fiuri Realms (Shioni of Sheba Book 5) The Sacred Lake (Shioni of Sheba Book 4) The Mad Giant (Shioni of Sheba Book 3) Enchantresses and Fair Folk: Fantasy Coloring Book (Enchanted Colors) (Volume 3) Battle Group Avalon (Castle Federation Book 3) Space Carrier Avalon (Castle Federation Book 1) Stellar Fox (Castle Federation Book 2) Magic Tree House Volumes 17-20 Boxed Set: The Mystery of the Enchanted Dog Enchanted Doll Enchanted by Vietnam: A Journey of Flavours through Vietnam Fairy Gardens: A Guide to Growing an Enchanted Miniature World Magical Beginnings, Enchanted Lives: A Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth The Enchanted World of Rankin/Bass The Enchanted Islands: The Galapagos Discovered Enchanted Evenings: The Broadway Musical from Show Boat to Sondheim The Enchanted April (Classic bestseller) ¡Bogotá!: A Bilingual Guide to the Enchanted City/Una guía bilingüe de la ciudad encantada (Spanish Edition) No Enchanted Palace: The End of Empire and the Ideological Origins of the United Nations (The Lawrence Stone Lectures)