Dereck Dillinger and the Crystal Ball

Children - Adventure
147 Pages
Reviewed on 09/01/2019
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Eddie McPherson is a writer living in rural Georgia after 20 years fighting traffic in Atlanta. Eddie has over 75 books and plays published in the educational, children's and Christian markets, including Virgil's Wedding, Writing a Will Can Be Murder, The Entire Pilgrim's Journey in 40 Minutes or Less, Christmas in Cricket County and Once Upon a Tower. Dereck Dillinger and the Shortcut to Oz and Dereck Dillinger and the Crystal Ball are his first books for kids.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite

Fractured: Dereck Dillinger and the Crystal Ball is a children’s adventure fantasy novel written by Eddie McPherson. Dereck had been about to go for an afternoon of fun at the fair with his friends when his mom called to say she’d been held up at work. So, instead of fooling around with the guys and going on rides, he was stuck watching his little sister, Jessie, as she rode on the merry-go-round. He tried to ignore the jeers of some boys who were making fun of his babysitting, but it wasn’t easy. Suddenly, he heard the booms and sizzles of fireworks going off overhead. He found that odd as they normally didn’t set them off until dark, but still he found it impossible not to watch as they erupted overhead in a blaze of light and color. He became even more confused when he noticed the fireworks were spelling out messages for him -- one even addressed him by name. When he excitedly tried to show a passerby the messages, they seemed confused at best and walked away. Suddenly, he felt a sharp pain, and looking at the carousel, he realized that Jessie was gone. She had vanished, seemingly into thin air. Where was she? How would he find her, and how could he face his mother?

Eddie McPherson’s adventure fantasy novel for children, Fractured: Dereck Dillinger and the Crystal Ball, is a grand action and adventure frolic as Dereck finds himself in an entirely different world while he’s searching for his little sister. As with his previous adventure in Oz, Dereck must solve mysteries and answer riddles based upon fairy tales and nursery rhymes if he’s to survive his adventure and rescue Jessie. The reader also has plenty of challenges to master to help Dereck along the way and revisiting those rhymes and fairy tales is a lot of fun for readers of all ages. McPherson’s plot is twisty and fun, and his characters fairly leap from the pages. Fractured: Dereck Dillinger and the Crystal Ball is highly recommended.

Lesley Jones

In Fractured: Dereck Dillinger and the Crystal Ball by Eddie McPherson, since the death of his father a year ago, Dereck now sees himself as protector to his mother and little sister, Jessie. When Jessie mysteriously disappears from a carousel while in Dereck's care, little does he realize what lies in store for him. Dereck is plummeted into a strange world of mystery and adventure, filled with well-known characters from children's fairy tales. Through the maze of tunnels and caves filled with surprises at every turn, Dereck meets the seven dwarfs, Miss Muffet's huge spider and his faithful companion, Rumpelstiltskin. But not everyone wants Dereck to succeed in his quest, to solve the cryptic clues and find the Crystal Ball that will return him and his sister to normality. There are some forces that are determined to lure Dereck into a world that he cannot escape from.

This fantastic adventure story ticks all the right boxes for me. I loved the author's style of writing; it is extremely visual and the plot is fast and exciting, with conflict in all the right places. Dereck is such a likeable character, he is sharp, intelligent and has a huge heart. The love for his family and his need to protect them since the loss of his father is clear and very heartwarming. The concept of this story is brilliant; taking well-known characters from fairy tales and putting them in a whole new situation is genius. I especially liked Dereck’s companion on the quest, Rumble (Rumpelstiltskin) who is sharp-witted and comical. The entire story takes you on an exciting rollercoaster where the action never ends. But this is more than just an action story; there is a great plot woven throughout too, which ends with a revelation at the end that ties up all the loose ends and will make you gasp. A fantastic story by a talented author with a clear talent for engaging the reader from the first to the last page.

Kristen Van Kampen (Teen Reviewer)

Fractured: Dereck Dillinger and the Crystal Ball by Eddie McPherson is a stunning book about a boy named Dereck. When his sister is kidnapped and he is transported to a fairytale world after her, Dereck's only hope is to find a crystal ball and answer a riddle. But he can't do it by himself. Dereck finds himself teaming up with many well known fairytale characters, including Rumpelstiltskin and one of the seven dwarfs. Dereck faces many obstacles throughout his quest to save his sister, and is betrayed by people he trusted. Will he succeed in his quest and get himself and his sister home, or will he be stuck in the fairytale world forever?

I really, really enjoyed reading Fractured: Dereck Dillinger and the Crystal Ball by Eddie McPherson. The book is incredibly descriptive and amazingly written. The author expertly blends many fairytales into one story. The book has many exciting parts in it that will keep readers on the edge of their seats. The story will hook readers from the first page, and keep their attention until the last. The characters are very realistic and likeable, and I liked how caring Dereck was toward his sister. The plot is action packed, and readers will wonder what will happen next. I loved the ending, and thought that it was perfect. The story is very creative, and readers will love the author's new take on classic stories and characters. The story has many plot twists that will leave readers shocked and amazed. I would definitely recommend this book to everyone.