Caramel reviews Talons of Power (Book Nine of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland

Today Caramel reviews the ninth book of Tui Sutherland’s Wings of Fire series: Talons of Power. As usual Sprinkles is taking notes and asking followup questions. 

Before reading this review you might wish to check out Caramel’s reviews of the graphic novel versions of the first five books (The Dragonet Prophecy,  The Lost Heir,  The Hidden KingdomThe Dark Secret, and The Brightest Night), as well as his review of the very first book (The Dragonet Prophecy, the sixth book (Moon Rising), the seventh (Winter Turning) and the eighth (Escaping Peril).

Caramel reviews Talons of Power (Book Nine of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland.
Caramel reviews Talons of Power (Book Nine of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland.

Sprinkles: So we are in book nine. Tell us about it!

Caramel: This one is about Turtle, who is a SeaWing. He has a secret power which he does not want others to know about. He is an animus, that means he has magic.

S: What kind of magic?

C: He can enchant things. For example he made a bowl that multiplies things, kind of like a Star Trek replicator. But he doesn’t want others to know he can do this.

S: Do his friends know?

C: Yes actually all his friends know. But he does not want other dragons to know. Because he is afraid. And then Darkstalker, the evil dragon we met before, comes and tries to convince others that he has become a good dragon. And this is a lie, of course.

S: And Turtle knows this?

C: Yes, and he even made himself invisible to Darkstalker. Darkstalker cannot see him or remember him. He can’t even hear him.

S: Why?

C: Because he is scared. He is a scaredy cat, but for a good reason. Because Darkstalker is actually still evil and has terrible plans to take over the whole continent.

S: That sounds serious.

C: It is! And all the other dragons believe Darkstalker, so Turtle has to save the day himself.

S: Hmm, that is a good synopsis Caramel so let us leave the plot here before we go into spoiler territory.

C: Okay.

Caramel is reading Talons of Power (Book Nine of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland.
Caramel is reading Talons of Power (Book Nine of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland.

S: So let us think more generally about the book. Turtle was a character we met before, but this is the book where he becomes the central character, right?

C: Yes.

S: Do you like him?

C: Yes. And actually I like him more now that I understand what is going on in his mind. And he is a good dragon, and his super secret power is really cool.

S: What would you do with that power if you had it Caramel?

C: Well, I am not sure I’d use it, because each time you use your super powers, it drains a part of your soul. It makes you less of yourself somehow.

S: Ooh, I did not know that! So maybe it makes sense that Turtle doesn’t want others to know he has super powers.

C: Yes I think so, too.

S: Okay, is that why Darkstalker is bad, because he keeps using his power?

C: No, he actually protected his soul because he learned how to. But his soul is not so nice, he was originally evil, so there is that.

S: Hmm, why can’t Turtle protect his soul?

C: Well, I guess he could, too, but he is still scared of using his powers.

S: I see. Then how about we move on? So what three words would you use to describe this book? How about we try to think of what distinguishes this book from the earlier ones?

C: There is more treachery in this one, so how about “treacherous”?

S: That is a good word! What else? You need two more ideas or ways to distinguish this one from the earlier eight books.

C: We knew the inner thoughts of almost everyone from the sixth book because Moonwatcher could read their thoughts. Everyone except Peril and Turtle. But Peril we learned about her thoughts in Escaping Peril, so only Turtle’s inner thoughts were unknown. Till this book.

S: Hmm, so is there a word that could help you capture this?

C: Revelation! This one reveals Turtle’s thoughts!

S: Yes! That is a neat word Caramel. I think a related descriptive adjective would be “revelatory”.

C: Okay, so my second word is “revelatory”.

S: How about your third word?

C: Well, I found it interesting that Turtle was afraid of becoming a hero.

S: Hmm, how about calling him a “reluctant hero” then?

C: Yes. I think that describes him well. Would that count?

S: Well, it is not quite a descriptor for the book, but let’s say it will do.

C: Yes, so can we wrap this up so I can move on to the tenth book?

S: I think we can Caramel.

C: Yay!

S: But before that, what will you tell our readers?

C: Stay tuned for more book bunny reviews!

Caramel loved reading Talons of Power (Book Nine of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland, and can't wait to dive next into the tenth book.
Caramel loved reading Talons of Power (Book Nine of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland, and can’t wait to dive next into the tenth book.

Caramel reviews Escaping Peril (Book Eight of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland

Caramel has been reviewing Tui Sutherland’s Wings of Fire books one by one, and today he is talking about the eighth book: Escaping Peril. As usual Sprinkles is taking notes and asking followup questions.

Before reading this review you might wish to check out Caramel’s reviews of the graphic novel versions of the first five books (The Dragonet Prophecy,  The Lost Heir,  The Hidden KingdomThe Dark Secret, and The Brightest Night), as well as his review of the very first book (The Dragonet Prophecy, the sixth book (Moon Rising), and the seventh (Winter Turning). Also beware: there might be more spoilers in this review than our usual fare.

Caramel reviews Escaping Peril (Book Eight of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland.
Caramel reviews Escaping Peril (Book Eight of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland.

Sprinkles: So Caramel, you are back to reading another Wings of Fire book!

Caramel: Yup. This one is called Escaping Peril, and it is all about Peril, a Skywing with the firescales.

S: Hmm, I know each of these books is focusing on one of the main characters. So is Peril someone we just met?

C: No, she appears in the very first book actually, The Dragonet Prophecy. And I reviewed that book twice, the graphic novel version and the original book. So I know what is in it pretty well.

S: I see. So we have met Peril before. How is the Peril in this book different from the other depictions of her?

C: Well, in the other books Peril is always seen from the outside. We don’t ever hear her thoughts or feelings. Even Darkstalker and Moonwatcher who can hear other dragons’ thoughts cannot read her mind. All Moon can see in Peril’s mind is walls of fire actually.

S: Oh yes I remember Moon from your review of Moon Rising. So Peril has been a mystery to the readers for a while now.

C: Yes I think you can say that. And in this book, we finally learn her version of the story. She is actually not so mean and wants to have friends but thinks nobody would ever like her because she is so mean. But she does actually have a friend, Clay, and we met Clay all the way back in the first book.

S: Oh, I like how all these characters and their stories are so intertwined with one another! The author must be a master weaver of story threads!

C: I guess you could say that too. I like these stories so much!

Caramel and a happy friend are reading Escaping Peril (Book Eight of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland.
Caramel and a happy friend are reading Escaping Peril (Book Eight of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland.

S: So maybe tell us a bit more about the actual story line of this particular book.

C: This is about Peril trying to find the ex-queen Scarlet.

S: Wait, you mentioned a Queen Scarlet before.

C: Yes, she calls herself a queen but she is no longer a queen actually. But Peril is faithful to her and wants her to become the queen again. Of course we learn that she was enchanted and that is why she is so loyal to Scarlet. And eventually she rips off the enchantment and burns it–

S: Wait, I think we are very close to or already past the line for too many spoilers!

C: But Queen Scarlet is killed, Ruby kills her–

S: Wait, that is even more spoilers. I think we should not give away too much.

C: Well, I disagree. It is more fun to talk about what actually happens in the book.

S: Okay, but there might be folks reading this without having read the book itself. So for those people, let us be more cautious, and leave some things in the book for them to discover on their own.

C: Okay, I can see how that would be more thoughtful, I suppose.

Caramel and his happy friend are discussing the various types of dragons in Escaping Peril (Book Eight of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland.
Caramel and his happy friend are discussing the various types of dragons in Escaping Peril (Book Eight of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland.

S: Okay, so having read these eight books (and actually, you jumped ahead and read the eleventh one too), who is your favorite character?

C: I still like Qibli. He is still the funniest character, though I am not quite sure if I am pronouncing his name correctly. And even my happy octopus friend agrees that Qibli is the best character.

S: I see. But I think Qibli is not a main character, no?

C: I think he will be, in the tenth book. But you are right, so far, he is not one of the main characters.

S: So among the eight main characters you met so far, which one is your favorite?

C: I like all of them. Because we get to see the world through their eyes and we can understand them.

S: I see. That is nice Caramel, that you can empathize, even with dragons!

C: Why wouldn’t I? I love dragons. Anyways I also kind of wish the author would write a book about Kinkajou, the RainWing. I think it would be interesting because she is always so positive–

S: You mean like optimistic?

C: Yes.

S: Okay, so what three words would you use to describe Escaping Peril?

C: Descriptive, because there is a lot of description. Especially in the gory parts.

S: So it is also gory?

C: A bit. Like when Ruby rips off Queen Scarlet’s wing–

S: Wait, that does sound vicious.

C: Yes. But Ruby is actually nice and this happens in a duel to the death so Ruby has to kill Scarlet.

S: That does sound a bit too much.

C: Yes, there is gore but it is only in some small parts. And war is violent and vicious and pretty terrible, always, so why hide it?

S: Wow, Caramel, that is unfortunately true and pretty wise for a little bunny. Okay, so descriptions, gore, what else is worth pointing out about this book? What would be your third word?

C: Funny. It is still funny.

S: So are you and your happy friend ready to move on to book nine?

C: Yes, and then book ten, and then book eleven–

S: Okay, I get the point. Then let us wrap up this review. What do you want to tell our readers?

C: Stay tuned for more book bunnies reviews!

Caramel and his happy friend loved reading Escaping Peril (Book Eight of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland, and recommend it to all little bunnies (and little happy octopi, too) who like dragons.
Caramel and his happy friend loved reading Escaping Peril (Book Eight of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland, and recommend it to all little bunnies (and little happy octopi, too) who like dragons.

Caramel reviews Somewhere, Right Now by Kerry Docherty

Today Caramel reviews Somewhere, Right Now, a 2022 picture book written by Kerry Docherty and illustrated by Suzie Mason. As usual Sprinkles is taking notes and asking questions.

The book bunnies received this book as a review copy.

Caramel reviews Somewhere, Right Now, written by Kerry Docherty and illustrated by Suzie Mason.
Caramel reviews Somewhere, Right Now, written by Kerry Docherty and illustrated by Suzie Mason.

Sprinkles: So Caramel, tell us a bit about this book.

Caramel: This book is about a girl named Alma who is scared and then her mom helps her by making her think of some nice thing happening somewhere right now. Then her brother gets mad, and then Alma helps him the same way. Then the father is sad and then the mom is overwhelmed, and they all help one another, all the same way.

S: So it is about a family who has a lot of small disappointments through their day and they support each other through it all?

C: Yes, pretty much. And I really like how they do it. They think about how somewhere there is something nice going on.

S: So having some perspective about things, that life might be upsetting in some ways for you right now, but look at the big picture: somewhere something good is happening. It’s like that?

C: Yes. For example there is a happy giraffe and a mommy whale and a baby whale and so on.

S: So it is almost like a game, right? If you are not feeling good about your life right now, say you are sad or angry, or disappointed or something, you can think about something nice. I like the idea. Almost like Pollyanna and her glad game. So let us think about something happening somewhere right now that could help us smile.

C: In the book there is a baby horse learning to walk. That made me smile.

S: Yes, me too! But I want you to come up with something yourself. Can you imagine something like that that could help you feel better?

C: Okay, so I’ll “close my eyes and imagine that somewhere, right now” … a bunny is getting sleepy and snuggling near his mommy.

S: Hmm, I think I know exactly where that bunny is!

C: Yes you do. Sitting right next to you.

S: Okay. I think that our readers might find that smile-worthy. I do. Let me try too. I’ll “close my eyes and imagine that somewhere, right now” … there is a beautiful sunrise over a green bay.

C: I like that!

Caramel is reading Somewhere, Right Now, written by Kerry Docherty and illustrated by Suzie Mason.
Caramel is reading Somewhere, Right Now, written by Kerry Docherty and illustrated by Suzie Mason.

S: So what did you think about the illustrations in the book?

C: I think they are cute. I especially like the baby horse learning to walk.

S: True. This is a really sweet book all around. I also thought the family members looked like one another, but not completely. So they could really be a family, don’t you think?

C: Yes. I agree. And the girl Alma has a little brother Jack. Like Marshmallow has me.

S: Yes, that is true too. Did you know there is a song to accompany this book?

C: No! Can we listen to it?

S: Sure. I will also embed it here:

Somewhere, Right Now Song | Kindergarten and Preschool Songs – YouTube (posted by the publisher Penguin Kids).

S: The song makes me think of the times we have been stuck at home and got really bored and frustrated. At such times, we could have played the “somewhere, right now” game and imagine something good happening somewhere.

C: Now we can. Hey, I have another one! Somewhere, right now, I think a baby polar bear might be playing with his mommy. Or maybe sleeping next to her because it is actually kind of late.

S: I see you are trying to send me a signal Caramel.

C: Yes.

S: This book made me want to snuggle too. I think it is a very good book for snuggling with one’s favorite little bunny and reading together.

C: Yes. I think so too. How about we do just that?

S: I think we might. But before that, tell me three words to describe the book.

C: Colorful, happy, and sweet.

S: I agree with all three of your words Caramel! So let us wrap up this review then. What do you want to tell our readers?

C: Stay tuned for more book bunny reviews! Oh and May the Fourth be with you!

Caramel enjoyed reading Somewhere, Right Now, written by Kerry Docherty and illustrated by Suzie Mason, and recommends it to all the little bunnies (and the big bunnies they read together with) for snuggle time.
Caramel enjoyed reading Somewhere, Right Now, written by Kerry Docherty and illustrated by Suzie Mason, and recommends it to all the little bunnies (and the big bunnies they read together with) for snuggle time.

Caramel reviews Winter Turning (Book Seven of the Wings of Fire series) by Tui Sutherland

Though still quite a little bunny, Caramel has been reading bigger and longer books these days. As a dedicated fan of all things dragon, he got into the Wings of Fire series of Tui Sutherland via the graphic novel versions of the first five books (The Dragonet Prophecy,  The Lost Heir,  The Hidden KingdomThe Dark Secret, and The Brightest Night). Then he began to read the original books. You can read his review of the very first book (The Dragonet Prophecy) and the sixth book (Moon Rising) before diving into this review, which is of the seventh book: Winter Turning. As usual, Sprinkles is taking notes and asking questions. (After all, Caramel is still a very little bunny.)

Caramel reviews Winter Turning (Book Seven of Wings of Fire) by Tui Sutherland.
Caramel reviews Winter Turning (Book Seven of Wings of Fire) by Tui Sutherland.

Sprinkles: So Caramel, this is book seven. What is going on in this one?

Caramel: This one is about a new dragonet named Winter. We met him before, in Moon Rising. That is the sixth book.

S: Okay, so I am guessing this book is centered around Winter then, given the title of the book.

C: Yes. But he is not turning anywhere. Or at least he is not turning bad.

S: Is someone trying to turn him bad?

C: No not quite. Well, there is Scarlet who is kind of trying. And Winter has a sister, named Icicle, who is already bad. And maybe I guess you could say she tries to turn Winter evil too.

S: I see.

C: But Winter has some classmates from Jade Academy. They call them clawmates, and Moonwatcher is one of them. Remember she was the main character from Moon Rising. Winter thinks that his kind of dragons, IceWings, are superior to the others, and thinks he does not need anybody’s help. But his friends try to help him anyway.

S: That is what friends are for, right?

C: Yes. But unfortunately they find themselves facing Queen Scarlet who is pretty bad. And dangerous. And then eventually Winter is alone and has to continue the path almost alone, he does have his brother with him. Hailstorm. And Hailstorm is good. But he has been transformed into a Skywing, named Pyrite, who is annoyingly loyal to Queen Scarlet.

S: Wait. I am confused. First how can one type of dragon be transformed into another? And you said Scarlet is evil. So if Pyrite, or Hailstorm is actually good, how is he so loyal to this evil queen?

C: One word. Darkstalker. And some of that is in the previous book.

S: Oh, so is Pyrite the one that is not what she seems in the prophecy?

C: I think so. Pyrite is definitely not the female SkyWing that she seems to be. She is actually a male IceWing named Hailstorm.

S: Oh, did we give away a lot here?

C: No, this comes up soon in this book. So not too much of a spoiler really.

Caramel is reading Winter Turning (Book Seven of Wings of Fire) by Tui Sutherland.
Caramel is reading Winter Turning (Book Seven of Wings of Fire) by Tui Sutherland.

S: So okay, maybe we can leave the plot aside because I’m afraid we will give away some vital information. But it seemed to me that you really enjoyed this book too. Is that true?

C: Yup. The books are all very very exciting! Icicle tries to kill Winter and then —

S: Wait, no more of the plot! I want to hear more general things. So tell me for example your three words to describe the book.

C: Exciting!

S: What else?

C: Confused.

S: You mean confusing?

C: No, I mean confused. Winter is confused. He is in love with Moon but he is not supposed to love a NightWing.

S: Okay, but you are getting awfully close to giving away more plot clues! What is your third word?

C: Funny! Qibli is really funny! He makes lots of jokes. And he is the friend of both Winter and Moonwatcher. We met him first in Moon Rising actually.

S: I see. So is he your favorite character then?

C: I think so.

S: That is cool. Are you ready to dive right into the next book then?

C: YES!

S: Okay. Let us wrap up this review then so you do just that. What do you want to tell our readers?

C: Stay tuned for more book bunny reviews!

Caramel loved reading Winter Turning (Book Seven of Wings of Fire) by Tui Sutherland and is ready to dive right into the eighth book.
Caramel loved reading Winter Turning (Book Seven of Wings of Fire) by Tui Sutherland and is ready to dive right into the eighth book.