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Reviewed by Ammaarah Seboa for Readers' Favorite
When opportunity comes knocking at your door, do you jump with both feet or do you settle for another boring summer? Joseph receives an invitation from Professor Benjamin Thessit to test out a new video game on an all-expenses-paid trip to the Murean Islands. Thinking that it’s a scam, he drags his best friend Eric along for the ride. However, everything is not as it seems and the secrets of this world are revealed. With the scatterbrained Professor and their hometown bully on the island, their summer is about to be anything but boring! Join Joseph and Eric in Erift’s Journey, book one in J.T. Tenera’s Secrets of the Sealed Forest, in their adventure into a world of magic.
First things first, I loved how J.T. Tenera's style made Secrets of the Sealed Forest: Erift’s Journey their own. With many children’s books exploring the world of magic, we are used to the same incantations in a sense. However, in Erift’s Journey, the notion of magic is a lost language, with its own alphabet consisting of symbols. The world-building was beautifully developed and allows readers to follow along. It’s a great book for children of all ages and echoes the tales of Camelot and Atlantis. This is a dream come true for those who wish we had magical powers. J.T. Tenera’s writing, by way of the “nutty Professor”, focuses on the fact that we all have a little magic in us. I think that is a beautiful message to be sending out, especially to children who are easily influenced by what they come across online. Can’t wait for the next book!