How to be a Hero

Cat Weldon. Pan Macmillan. (256p) ISBN 9781529045031

How to be a Hero

How to be a Hero

I received this from Pan Macmillan at the end of last year in exchange for a review, the way time has been going recently that feels like an absolute age ago.

How to be a Hero follows the (mis)adventures of Whetstone (a useless thief and an orphan) and Lotta (a pretty poor trainee Valkyrie) in a fast-paced, comedic tromp all over what we know of Norse Mythology

There are gigantic Vikings chasing Whetstone when he does eventually steal something, a giant dragon chasing Whetstone when he goes looking for the thing he stole, a Norse God chasing him to try and get what he’s stolen. There’s a lot of chasing going on.

There are plenty of mud and smelly jokes for the whole family, and Cat’s particular take on Viking history and personalities is hilarious.

As the mystery of what is going on unfolds we are taken through various aspects of Norse mythology, talking about various realms, gods, and denizens who could all become part of the story as it develops in the next two instalments still to come of this fun trilogy.


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The Time of Green Magic

Hilary McKay. Pan Macmillan. (224p) ISBN 9781529019247

The Time of Green Magic

The Time of Green Magic

I was really lucky to get a proof copy of The Time of Green Magic from Macmillan as I really loved The Skylarks’ War and was looking forward to this.

When Theo and Polly met Abi’s life went through some big changes, two families blended, and she didn’t have her dad Theo all to herself anymore. More than that though she also had Max and Louis, two new stepbrothers to share everything with.

When they move into a mysterious ivy-clad new house for the extra space, mysterious happenings start to haunt them.

Shadows throughout the house and a mysterious visitor makes for a magical mysterious adventure with a real hint of danger.

Themes of change, growth, and familial love give this book a wonderful magical depth that needed a couple of read throughs to get everything out of it.


If you want to help and support this blog and my other projects (Indie Publishers and Big Bearded Bookseller) you could become a Patreon which would help pay for my hosting, domain names, streaming services, and the occasional bag of popcorn to eat while watching films.

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Storm Hound

Claire Fayers. Pan Macmillan. (256p) ISBN 9781509895045

Storm Hound

Storm Hound

Storm of Odin, youngest hound in the Wild Hunt, finds himself in a spot of trouble after falling to earth. He is no longer a gigantic, ravening force of nature tearing the very fabric of the sky apart, he is now a cute puppy with floppy ears and a flappy tail!

The tail weaves Welsh mythology into the modern day, old sorcerors, shape-shifting boys, and a trio of dark, but oh so stupid, wizards looking to steal the power of Storm to power their own magic and ambitions.

A wonderful adventure, that was so funny I was snorting in public (strange looks in Nero), the sections of misunderstanding between Storm and the human world are hilarious and so well written you would think Claire had first hand experience.

I loved this so much I actually had to read it a second time to make sure it was a 5-star book that I will be recommending to everyone and their granny.

I received a copy of Storm Hound from NetGalley for an honest review.


If you want to help and support this blog and my other projects (Indie Publishers and Big Bearded Bookseller) you could become a Patreon which would help pay for my hosting, domain names, streaming services, and the occasional bag of popcorn to eat while watching films.

If you can’t support with a monthly subscription a tip at my Ko-Fi is always appreciated, as is buying things from my Ko-Fi Shop.

You can always email me on contact@bigbeardedbookseller.com with any suggestions.

Mirror Magic

Claire Fayers. Pan Macmillan. (304p) ISBN 9781509870066

Mirror Magic

Mirror Magic

Magic in mirrors, alternative worlds, doorways through mirrors. All these topics had me so interested in this book when it arrived.

I wasn’t disappointed, Mirror Magic was read in a day. Funny, fresh and exciting!

Claire’s world is one set in the late 19th century where our world has separated from the magic a few hundred years in the past and the only link are Mirrors.

The mystery and magic develops through the book when Ava returns after the death of her father and discovers a lot about herself and this new (to her world). Inextricably linked to Unworld by a bargain sealed years ago, Ava is the key to both worlds salvation or destruction.

I would love to see this world developed further.

A compelling read, always wanting to find out what happened next, make sure you get your copy soon.


If you want to help and support this blog and my other projects (Indie Publishers and Big Bearded Bookseller) you could become a Patreon which would help pay for my hosting, domain names, streaming services, and the occasional bag of popcorn to eat while watching films.

If you can’t support with a monthly subscription a tip at my Ko-Fi is always appreciated, as is buying things from my Ko-Fi Shop.

You can always email me on contact@bigbeardedbookseller.com with any suggestions.