Thursday, October 16, 2014

Book Review: Max's Arabian Adventure


I love Wendy Leighton-Porter's Shadows From the Past series and was delighted to find her latest book, where Max the cat has an unusual adventure. Max’s Arabian Adventure has one significant difference from all his other escapades with twins Jemima and Joe and their best friend Charlie—this time Max is on his own. Although Max bravely steps up when required to do so, and often plays extremely heroic roles in the face of terrible danger and almost certain death, Max secretly hates all this derring-do and time traveling in search of the twins’ missing parents. After all, a cat only has nine lives and Max wants to hang onto all of his because you never know when you’re going to need them! It was that dratted book’s fault, of course, luring him into turning just one page. Wait a moment! How come the book was open? The book can only be opened by a special key, which Jemima keeps on a chain around her neck. Another thing: Joe is usually so careful about putting the book back into its box after each adventure. One shouldn’t leave a magical book lying around. Anyone might step into another world and without the key to get back… That’s what happened to Max. He was yanked into another world, a world of blazing sun and burning sand and it is very hot in the desert if you’re not used to it. His captor is a magician who has (somehow) heard of Max’s amazing feats and has a task for Max. He must enter a dark and dirty tunnel to ‘fetch’ (steal) something very special for this magician, who proves to be a most unsympathetic and untrustworthy character. Will Max manage to get out alive or will the magician trick him? Meeting Falak the falcon and Ghazala the camel saves his life, but how will Max get back to his family? Is he doomed to be stuck in an Arabian adventure forever?


Author Wendy Leighton-Porter and 'Max'.
Wendy Leighton-Porter’s feline hero, Max the talking Tonkinese cat, has brought such pleasure to young and young-at-heart readers. Max is technically a coward, but relies on his common sense, his evasive tactics when danger threatens, and his canny ‘cat’ sense to get out of trouble. Of course, having humans like Jemima, Joe and Charlie on his side also helps. It’s extremely difficult for a cat to manage when it comes to getting out of scrapes, like tunnels where one is trapped, and trudging miles back over desert sands to find civilization. But Max has done it before and he does it again. Readers will love the descriptions of how Max is whisked (by trickery!) from his comfy home to the horrors of being abandoned in the desert. The author has imbued Max with such realistic characteristics and a wonderful personality. This is truly Max’s adventure and he truly shines! I loved this book. Five stars! Catch all Max's adventures on Wendy's author site!
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