Plot: Capable young characters escape the confines of an inhumane orphanage on a quest to uncover the truth about the protagonist's parents. This is a far-flung adventure story that will readily interest the target audience.
Prose: The author writes in clear, descriptive prose that at times harkens back to an earlier era, an effect that offers an element of timelessness to the storytelling.
Originality: Readers of the genre will undoubtedly find overlap between this novel and other works, but the author nevertheless integrates alluring and novel details throughout.
Character Development: The central child characters are charismatic and fully capable of carrying the story. Adult characters are often characteristically self-serving, bumbling, or unkind.
Date Submitted: August 20, 2019
Narrator Ian Russell carries listeners along for a thrilling, fast-paced adventure about two kids, Tom and Sarah, who run away from a bleak Yorkshire orphanage. Pursued by a determined police detective, they face even more danger when Tom discovers a clue about his ancestry that may link him to the royal family and a plot to eliminate his bloodline--including him. With varied accents and voices, Russell transports listeners to England and brings each character to life. As hot-air balloon crashes, several narrow escapes, and a white-knuckle chase through London ensue, Russell ramps up the pace of his narration, making the danger all the more palpable. S.C. © AudioFile 2019, Portland, Maine [Published: SEPTEMBER 2019]
“An intriguing first-in-series read that is sure to capture the attention of middle grade and young adult crowd. Readers journey through English cities and countryside beautifully rendered in the narrative. The book also includes maps and intelligent background information about the setting and history with access to online illustrations and commentaries. Britfield weaves plot, texture, storytelling, and fascinating characters into a winning combination and enriching experience."
- Chanticleer Book Review - 5 Stars!
“Tom just barely escapes the evil orphanage with his friend Sara to follow the clues of his long-lost parents who may still be alive! Could he really be the heir of the British throne? Such a thrilling book filled with so much awesome history about England, crazy mysteries, and truly amazing characters. It had me hooked every second of reading it!! I can’t wait for the sequel.”
- Hannah, Age 13, Kids’ Book Buzz - 5 Stars!
Britfield and the Lost Crown is an adventure starring two orphans in modern-day England. When the book begins, the two orphans are in a corrupt orphanage called Weatherly. The orphans, who are named Tom and Sarah, are very good friends and soon begin to plan an escape. However, not everything goes as planned, and an orphan-catching detective is immediately sent after them to prevent the owner’s corrupt business from being discovered. Detective Gowerstone, who is the detective sent after the duo, is a professional orphan-catcher. We soon discover that the one case this detective was never able to solve has a mysterious relationship to Tom’s family.
The two orphans travel all over England, from Oxford to London, as well as stopping by at Windsor Castle. While stopping by at Oxford, they befriend Professor Hainsworth, who later proves himself crucial for their evasion of the detective. With the help of the professor, Tom and Sarah soon learn that Tom may be part of the long-lost Britfield family that once had a claim to the English throne. This book is full of action, including a daring escape from the orphanage and adventures in a hot air balloon, and suspense as Tom and Sarah do their best to find Tom’s family before they are caught.
With a story full of life-threatening situations, including a professional assassin is sent to capture them by all means and a surprise twist ending involving the detective’s true motives, this book is like no other. The characters all complement each other with their skills, including Tom’s bravery, Sarah’s trickery, and Professor Hainsworth’s intelligence. This is an easy-to-follow and thrilling story. As the overseers at Weatherly Orphanage are constantly sending threats to stop the runaway children, the story is constantly evolving and introducing new characters and themes. This book also has an extra level of realism with real-life locations that include Hyde Park and other tourist destinations in England. I would give this book five stars to readers who enjoy fantasy, royalty, and a bit of English history
- Super Book Boy, Age 12, Kids Book Buzz - 5 Stars
“A perfect mixture of fast-paced excitement, heart-stopping surprises, fascinating history, and endearing characters with historical references scattered along the way. Tom and Sarah’s devotion to each other provides an excellent backdrop to the many mishaps and dangers in which they find themselves. I could see this book being used in a classroom setting both as a literature piece and as a geographical and historical resource. Stewart’s clever narrative draws you in and doesn’t let you go till the end!”
- Dawn Weaver, Reader’s favorite Book Reviews - 5 Stars!
Gold Medal: Parents' Choice Foundation Awards, Audiobook
Winner: American Fiction Awards, Best Cover Design - Children's Books
First Place: Purple Dragonfly Book Award, Middle Grade Fiction
Award-Winning Story Monsters Ink Magazine Approved!
“Recognizing & honoring accomplished authors in the field of
children’s literature that inspire, inform, teach & entertain.”
Award Winning Finalist: American Fiction Awards, Pre-Teen Fiction
Award-Winning Finalist: International Book Awards, Children’s Fiction
Winner: Book Excellence Awards, Pre-Teen Fiction
First Place: CIPA EVVY BOOK AWARD, Juvinile Fiction
Silver Medal: Global Ebook Awards, Children’s Literary Fiction
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