Snakes & Ladders

Bannister's Muster Book Two

Children - Adventure
316 Pages
Reviewed on 02/04/2018
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

When I was young, my parents never asked me what I wanted for my birthday. Instead they asked me which book I wanted for my birthday! So I grew up with a love of reading and writing, in a house of overflowing book shelves.
I made up stories every night. First I thought of a word, or a simple situation. Then I worked out a story to match, and wrote the story in my head until I fell asleep. I must have written hundreds of stories over the years, but there weren’t many on paper. I wrote a play for my primary school all about a peasant girl, but I spelled it wrongly and it came out as pheasant girl, which really confused my teacher. I wrote fairy stories too, but I expect they were terrible.

I have a love for both history and fantasy, and have written many books of both kinds. Most of these books have been written for adults, but I love to write for children too.

And so the new Bannister’s Muster series began. It also combines history with fantasy, and adventure. I have written three so far and intend having six in this series, and I am enjoying every minute.

Although I was born in England, I live in Australia amongst the kangaroos, koalas, and thousands of parrots. This is a great way to encourage my imagination, and I still love to dream.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Michelle Stanley for Readers' Favorite

Snakes and Ladders, Book Two in the Bannister’s Muster series is a pre-teen fantasy by Barbara Gaskell Denvil. Nathan Bannister and his sister, Poppy, travel into a past that’s steeped in danger. They meet with their friends Alice, John Ten-Toes, and Alfie from ancient London who accompany them on their next dangerous adventure. The siblings can’t believe they’re Queen Messina’s children or that Nathan is her successor. But this won’t happen if the tyrannical Hazlett family have their way. The Hazletts are wizards who constantly use their dark powers to prevent Queen Messina’s family from ruling the kingdom of Lashtang. Poppy and Alice are bitten by a poisonous spider while searching for the Cord of Destiny that’s hidden by the Hazletts, and they become ill. Queen Messina attempts to help them, unaware that her efforts could lead to her death by the hand of a traitor.

The title Snakes and Ladders has significant meaning in this gripping sequel to Bannister’s Muster. The magical adventure that began in Book One continues so there is never a dull moment. Barbara Gaskell Denvil made sure of that. New characters like the Epilogs (invisible people) are as interesting as the main ones. Poppy is fearless yet doubts her magical skills. Nathan has matured a lot since learning what his future entails. Children will love the quests or exploits that these kids experience. The plot is filled with danger, fun, laughter, and love. The author writes remarkably well and imaginatively. Snakes and Ladders is a terrific novel for children who like fantasy and lots of action.