Thursday, 12 January 2017

Blog Tour Review + Guest Blog Post The Unicorns of Blossom Wood #1-4 by Catherine Coe (Children's, 5 years +, 10E/10E)

5th January 2017, Scholastic, 112 pages, Paperback, Review copies

Nayu's thoughts 
Book #1 summary
When cousins Cora, Isabelle and Lei discover magical hoof prints in the ground, they're whisked away to an amazing land where they're no longer girls ... they're unicorns! But the animals in Blossom Wood don't believe in unicorns. Can the three cousins change their minds - with the help of a little magic?

Nayu's thoughts on book #1
I can't recall a book where he main characters turn into animals, let alone unicorns! (Just thought of one but that's it). Unicorns are spectacular creatures so it was a delight for me to say yes to this tour. Scholastic sweetly sent the entire series so I knew what happens in the beginning! How the cousins change is awesome. Their close friendship helps them through the remarkable experience of being in Blossom Wood, as well as the exciting capabilities as unicorns. The hoof thing is truly magical and a joy to read about. 

I wonder what colour my mane would be! I liked Lei's hair braid which influences her mane (sort of). The illustrations are super cute, making me smile lots as I explored Blossom Wood with the girls. The animals' reaction was understandable, and with the help of a new friend the girls eventually get to know the animals. I was a bit surprised that only 1 girl found her magical talent in this book, but knowing there are others has me reaching for the next one! 

 Book #2 summary
Isabelle, Lei and Cora are back in Blossom Wood - just in time for a magical festival. All of the animals are there, except for one. Lizzie the bunny is lost in Echo Mountains! Can the Unicorns of Blossom Wood use their magic to find her?
Nayu's thoughts on book 2
Isabelle discover her magical talent which proves useful in their quest to find a missing creature. I'm wondering how else it will help residents of Blossom Wood in future stories. It's fun seeing a different season, for 2 of the girls experience snow for the first time and their delight flies off the page. 

It's the little details which make this world so special-I love it when animals wear clothes, so to see lots of little hats and scarves on everyone made me smile. I like the types of food and drink the girls get to try. 

The only thing which seems absent in the series so far is a bit more depth on how the girls are finding life as a horse, as their eyesight (if going by a horse biology) would be different, and I know characters in most books rarely use the bathroom but going as an equine is different from humans! However, since the girls are unicorns maybe aight, their mouth are he same and magic prevents bathroom needs.That's why the series still gets full marks 

Book #3 summary
 Cora, Isabelle and Lei arrive in Blossom Wood to bright sunshine. But moments later, a storm begins to rain down. Blossom Wood is being flooded and the animals need their help. The only problem is, Lei still doesn't know what her unicorn magic is! Can the Unicorns of Blossom Wood come to the rescue?

Nayu's thoughts on book #3
I want to go to a rainbow party! The fun there is infectious. Lei finally finds her magical talent, after a whirlwind of emotions which affects not onky herself but all the animals in Blossom Wood. I got teary eyed with relief when she discovered it, as she had been so down over being the odd one out with her friends. Highlights included just how big a help all the girls were in their unicorn form when danger strikes.  

Book #4 summary
Lei, Isabelle and Cora are back in Blossom Wood for another adventure. Their friend Loulou the squirrel is organizing a talent show for all the animals. The three cousins can't wait to help, but what's the matter with Loulou? Can the Unicorns of Blossom Wood use their special powers to make Loulou happy again?

Nayu's thoughts on book 4
I was so sad when I finished this book because I didn't want the fun to stop. It's a great culmination of the girls using their magical talents to help out Loulou, only in an unexpected way which made me cry for joy. It's such a clever plot twist! This book shows readers how much organisation goes into a talent show, that everyone has a talent no matter how small it seems, and practice increases the probability of the routine going well. I loved how the different animals used their best natural talents to entertain everyone, and that although the girls thought they might miss out on a routine, tthey managed not to. 

Nayu's thoughts on the series as a whole
The series as a whole is spectacular in imagination and the trials the girls face. They have to conquer fears, uncertainty, and problems caused by animals and nature. The puzzles aren't too difficult to solve, nor are they super easy-in book 2 I only found 4 of the 5 differences in the two pictures. There is always a spot the difference. The animal facts at the end is interesting too. The 1st 3 books saw each girl discover their magical talent, with the 4th using all their talents. 

Find out more on the dedicated Blossom Wood website!

If I weren't an author I'd be... by Catherine Coe

1. A librarian - because then I'd be surrounded by books and get to talk about books all day. (Although my husband would probably say this is pretty much true anyway - my bookshelves are teetering out of control!) Nayu: mine are in a similar situation!

2. Or a Lego designer (yep, that really is a job). I was obsessed with Lego when I was younger, and my bedroom floor was ALWAYS covered in my creations. I still have my giant box of Lego in the attic. One day I will retrieve that box and spend days upon days making stuff again (when I don't have a deadline!). 

3. Or an athlete - because I am super competitive and love sports and running in particular, and I like to fool myself that I could somehow have been an Olympic sprinter (realistically, extremely unlikely!). 

4. Or I'd work at an owl sanctuary - they're such amazing creatures and I was lucky enough to spend lots of time at a local sanctuary whie researching the Owls of Blossom Wood. Nayu: incredibly jealous as I adore owls! 

5. Or maybe I'd be a tour guide, because I like to learn unusual facts about places, I love to travel, and I may be a tiny bit bossy...

6. Or a unicorn - because that's a job, right?  After all, someone has to spread magic and sparkle around the world! Nayu: you're already doing that with your books!

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