Atticus Everheart, Fifth Grade Tutor, and Monster Hunter? by C.L. Colyer


Atticus Everheart, Fifth Grade Tutor, and Monster Hunter? by C.L. Colyer
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Middle Grade (8 – 12 y.o.), Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Paranormal, Contemporary
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewed by Astilbe

Nothing frightens Atticus Everheart more than monsters, thanks to his older brothers, who often threaten to feed him to the beastly creatures. Fearing that’s what they will do if he doesn’t replace the book he accidentally ruined, he takes a job tutoring a boy in his neighborhood. Although nervous about the job, Atticus soon discovers there’s a lot more in store for him than teaching. Never in a trillion years would he have imagined he’d be hiding from monsters, working with ghosts, or searching for werewolves and witches. He’s not brave, and he has no plans to change. Until he’s forced to.

Tutoring isn’t always as easy as it looks.

Ms. Colyer has a smooth writing style that makes her work a joy to read. She knew exactly when to explain things in a way that would make sense to her target audience as well as when to leave other details a little vague for the amusement of older readers or later chapters when all would be revealed. I appreciated her sense of timing and her willingness to allow some of her readers to be a little confused for a while in order to build tension for future scenes. This was my second time reading one of her books, and I hope to have many more adventures with her characters in the future.

In a review of a previous work of hers, I had mentioned wishing the author had spent more time on world building. It was delightful to see exactly that happen this time around. The plot didn’t require the characters to dig too deeply into why half-vampires existed in their universe, to share but one example, but it did give me exactly enough information about what sorts of supernatural creatures existed here and how ordinary humans reacted to the idea of them. Would I have liked to know even more? Yes, but it wasn’t strictly necessary for the storyline, and I walked away pretty content with what I did know. Sometimes it’s better to leave an audience wanting more, after all.

Kids don’t always interpret our world the same way grownups do, and that’s one of the reasons why I enjoy middle grade fiction so much. There’s something magical about seeing a character attempt to figure out an unusual and rare social convention or discover the meaning of a complex word for the first time. I had plenty of opportunities to do just that in this tale, and I relished every miscommunication and misunderstanding Atticus faced as he attempted to earn the money he needed to replace his brother’s book. Those moments were as funny as they were necessary for everything else that was about to happen to him.

Speaking of that, I was also impressed with how focused the writing was on its target audience. While adults can enjoy it, too, it truly was written for middle grade readers from the first scene to the last one. This isn’t something I see nearly as much as I’d like to in this genre, and it was refreshing to read a story that knew exactly who its audience was and never wavered from speaking to them in ways they’d best understand.

Atticus Everheart, Fifth Grade Tutor, and Monster Hunter? was a spooky and delightful read.

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Comments

  1. Thanks for hosting!

  2. I’m delighted you enjoyed Atticus’s story! Thank you for sharing your lovely review with your followers and for being a part of the tour.

    I’ll stop back by, so if anyone has a question for me, pop it in the comments!

  3. What a great review! Love this author! Thank you!

  4. Great review

  5. Bea LaRocca says

    Thank you for sharing your review of Atticus Everheart, Fifth Grade Tutor, and Monster Hunter?, this sounds like a great story to share with my grandchildren

  6. Eva Millien says

    Great cover, Atticus Everheart, Fifth Grade Tutor, and Monster Hunter? sounds like an excellent book to entertain the kids! Thanks for sharing it with me!

    Thanks, Astilbe, for sharing your review!

    Have an awesome weekend!

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