Author: Tania del Rio
Illustrator: Will Staehle
Release Date: November 24th, 2015
Publisher: Quirk Books
Pages: 224 (Hardcover)
Genre: MG | Fantasy | Adventure
Series: Warren the 13th
Read: from October 22 to 24, 2015
Source & Shelf: NetGalley | Kobo
ISBN: 9781594748035 (Hardcover)
Meet Warren the 13th, a cursed 12-year-old Victorian bellhop who’s terribly unlucky . . . yet perpetually optimistic, hard-working, and curious. Orphan Warren’s pride and joy is his family’s hotel, but he’s been miserable ever since his evil Aunt Anaconda took over the management. Anaconda believes a mysterious treasure known as the All-Seeing Eye is hidden somewhere on the grounds, and she’ll do anything to find it. If Warren wants to preserve his family’s legacy, he’ll need to find the treasure first—if the hotel’s many strange and wacky guests don’t beat him to it! This middle-grade adventure features gorgeous two-color illustrations on every page and a lavish two-column Victorian design that will pull young readers into a spooky and delightful mystery.
Disclaimer: Thank you NetGalley and Quirk Books for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Warren the 13th and the All-Seeing Eye was simply an adorable tale about optimism, being true to one-self and friendship. Accompanied by beautiful illustrations, this is a very easy-going book for pretty much all ages. It has you hook since page one to find out more about not only Warren himself but also about the adventure he’s soon to be faced with.
Warren is the 13th in line in to run his family’s hotel. Unfortunately for him, his uncle married and his life has been pretty much a misery since then. But his optimism and his genuinely happy personality keeps his days bright and always ready for what’s about to come. When his aunt begins to search for the All-Seeing Eye, something that legend says contains much power, he’s thrown into an adventure that will change his life forever.
I received a digital ARC (advance readers copy) of this book through NetGalley and some of the illustrations towards the end of the book were incomplete. A shame, really, because one of the positive things about this book are exactly the illustrations. They are gorgeous and fit the story rather well. The ones I was lucky enough to have seen, gave us a pretty insight of the settings that the author wished to create. I admit that one of the main reasons I requested this book were exactly the illustrations that reminded me of Tim Burton’s movies. Take a look:
Warren was an amazing character to met and read about. His development was also one of the positive points in the story and his voice was down-to-earth and it flew with the story. In the beginning he’s this sort of lonely, shy, little boy that soon grows into a very special character that is the heart of the whole story.
There were funny moments to the plot, others that border the creepy (not too much though), there was magic, witches, friendship, strange creatures and a hotel. All this set in the Victorian period which makes everything much, for the lack of a better word, cooler.
The mystery surrounding this strange object called the All-Seeing Eye and its search makes the story much more interesting. In the end I admit I was surprised with what it turned out to be and that was one major positive thing. It wasn’t that predictable and wanting to know exactly what this so call powerful object is all about, is one of the main things that grabs your attention.
Overall, I think Warren the 13th and the All-Seeing Eye was an excellent story with a great main character, a unpredictable mystery and adventure that will definitely be the delight of pretty much everyone. Add the beautiful Burton-ish illustrations, and you have a book that is easy to read and makes you simply feel optimistic, even if it’s just Warren’s contagious spirit.