March Book Madness: Beyond the Spiderwick Chronicles

book cover of   The Nixie's Song    (Beyond the Spiderwick Chronicles, book 1)  by  Holly Black and   Tony DiTerlizzi
This is part of my March Book Madness series of posts. Mostly, I have been sharing out student work. But I also throw in my own reviews now and then, and here is one for Beyond the Spiderwick Chronicles by Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi that I read aloud to my six year old son.

I’ll have to be sort of blunt: I didn’t like this one. And I don’t think my son did, either, although he enjoyed the illustrations of the giants, faeries and other enchanted creatures. But he wasn’t clammoring for me to cuddle up on the couch for read aloud (which is not like him) and I felt as if we needed to finish it just to finish it and move on to another book, and not to finish it because we were so engaged in the story.

And that’s disappointing because we both loved DiTerlizzi’s The Search for WondLa. That book had rich characters, an interesting plot with several story arcs and a setting that was full of wonder and surprises.

This book, which is an offshoot of the original Spiderwick Chronicles? Meh. We never really connected with the main character (although there was something there about this boy that I wanted to see further developed), the plot seemed strung together rather quickly, and it really felt as if someone had made a sequel to famous movie but only half-heartedly (as if, well, money for a follow-up were the reason, not the art itself). At least, it was short.

I admit that I picked this one up by mistake, thinking it was part of the original Spiderwick series. But I don’t think my son or I have much interest in reading more Spiderwick at this point in time. Enchanted creatures or not, the writing left me bored and dreaming of something better to read with my son.

Peace (in the book chronicle),
Kevin

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