Book Review: Emba Oak & the Terrible Tomorrows

By Jenny Moore

Emba lives in a cave with Fred, the Wise Hermit of Witcherly Wood. Fred is the guardian and interpreter of the Tome of Terrible Tomorrows, a book of obscure prophecies, as well as the only mother Emba has ever known.  When Emba sees a dragon that no one else does, Fred decides come clean about Emba’s parentage. It turns out Emba actually hatched from a dragon’s egg. Fred has been using magic charms to protect Emba from the necromancer, Necromalcolm, who is desperately seeking dragon blood. While Emba worries about what it all means, Fred is abducted, and a ransom note from Necromalcolm threatens a calamitous end to Fred if Emba doesn’t present herself at his door. Despite not knowing what ‘calamitous’ means, Emba and her friend, Odolf BraveBuckle, set off on a journey to rescue Fred.

Emba Oak and the Terrible Tomorrows is an imaginative, well-written, and fun story. Emba, with her snake skin arms, her courage and fierce determination to rescue Fred, regardless of the cost, and her kind nature, is a great heroine. Odolf, who longs to be the hero, but struggles to overcome his fear when faced with danger, is a loyal friend and worthy sidekick. I loved the imaginative details scattered throughout the book – the snare roots and boulder beasts of the forest, for instance, or the Pool of Perilous Perception which shows either your greatest fear or your greatest desire (funnily enough, often people can’t tell which they have been shown!).  The story is told in a very light-hearted humorous way, and while I usually prefer my fantasy less tongue-in-cheek, I really enjoyed this charming magical adventure (though the toenail talisman totally grossed me out!). Emba Oak is sure to be a hit with young readers too.

Thanks to BookCraic for the h/t, and also to NetGalley and the publishers for a copy of the book which was published October this year. I’ll be watching out for book 2!

Knitted TOTP really wanted to be pictured in his Santa outfit this week but I forgot! Live TOTP will have to do instead… this is a photo which I am going to enter in my workplace best dressed Christmas pet! What do you think?

10 thoughts on “Book Review: Emba Oak & the Terrible Tomorrows

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