Saving Hogmand

Tales From the MIA

Young Adult - Fantasy - General
263 Pages
Reviewed on 10/28/2023
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Anne-Marie Reynolds for Readers' Favorite

Saving Hogmand: Tales From the MIA by Aleksandra Chumak is a YA fantasy story. Clara and Sasha have been desperate for an adventure for as long as they can remember, but they are about to learn that, sometimes, what you wish for isn’t always what you really want. Beneath Sasha’s house, a magical tunnel has appeared, and when the girls enter it, they find Hogmand, a magical, enchanted land. However, it appears to be under the control of something evil, and the girls must battle bloodthirsty unicorns, ghosts, and a witch, not to mention two evil girls who look just like them. The Hogmand natives join the girls on their quest to free the land, but can they break the evil witch’s grip, or will one of their own betray them?

Saving Hogmand by Aleksandra Chumak is a wonderful YA story, full of action and written in an intriguing, captivating manner that makes you want to keep reading. It provides all the ingredients needed for a YA adventure – plenty of mystery, battles with quirky creatures, and lots of humor, too. The characters are exceptional, developed into people – or creatures – you can believe in, and you’ll root for the good guys all the way through. This is a page-turner, a book you won’t put down until you’ve reached the end, and it will leave you wanting to read the next one in the series straight away. This is a great first book in a new series, and I hope the rest follow suit as this looks like a series to follow.

K.J. Simmill

In Aleksandra Chumak’s Saving Hogmand, when Clara and Sasha came home to find a mysterious ladder in their cellar, one revealed and hidden by magic words, they could only hope it was the start of an adventure. But they never dreamed the MIA (Magic Interuniverse Agency) would need their help. They hadn't even known the MIA existed. But when they opened the portal to Hogmand, their fates were sealed. The two girls must eliminate the threat to Hogmand or risk being trapped there forever. To succeed in their mission, they must eliminate the two ghosts planning to take over, but how do you kill something that is already dead?

Written in a rather unique observer/narrator perspective, which adapts the omniscient perspective to allow the reader to enter the thoughts and minds of the characters, Aleksandra Chumak creates a fantasy tale suitable for youngsters and young adults alike in Saving Hogmand, part of the Tales From the MIA series. It was thrilling to watch Clara and Sasha navigate the challenges and trials as they are drawn into a new world with its own order, rules, and creatures. There has clearly been a great deal of work put into the creation of the world, and consideration into learning who to trust and where to tread with caution. The quotes at the start of each chapter are a nice touch that gives the reader mini-thinking points. This book has all the elements that make fantasy great, from unique magic and fantastical settings to intrigue, mystery, and characters who grow through the struggles they face. Danger, humor, and magic combine to create a tale that could be enjoyed by the whole family.

Essien Asian

Sasha and Clara are two friends who constantly long for an adventure that would shake up their lives. Their best efforts have remained firmly within the realms of wishful thinking until now. At the end of one of their bike rides, they come across an oddly placed ladder. In a moment of blissful ignorance, a random wish for the ladder to open up into an enchanted world is instantly granted and the two teenagers are immediately co-opted into a battle to save the enchanted kingdom of Hogmand from a pair of tyrannical ghosts. Will their inaugural adventure have the happy ending they have always dreamed of or will they become the next victims of the ghosts and their cohorts? Only time will tell in Aleksandra Chumak's Saving Hogmand.

Aleksandra Chumak continues Tales From The MIA series with this fantasy tale titled Saving Hogmand. Her storyline has two teenagers discover the dark side of those fairytales they have always wanted to partake in. There is a curious assortment of characters as the girls and their colleagues are joined by an interesting array of mythical creatures made famous by other pop culture classics. The conversations between the characters are youthful and loaded with the barbs one can expect in youthful banter tinged with some level of distrust. Kiki's positive outlook toward every situation the teens find themselves in sets a light-hearted tone for a story that at times sounds more mature than its intended audience. Chumak’s combination of frightening characters that are described in vivid detail with almost carefree adventure gives Saving Hogmand a one-of-a-kind appeal that will easily attract true fantasy fans.