A Strong, Young Heroine: The Warble by Victoria Simcox
The Warble is the first book in The Bernovem Chronicles, written by Victoria Simcox. Description: Dwarfs, gnomes, fairies, talking animals, and an evil queen – all these and more can be found in The Warble, an enchanting tale of adventure and friendship.
Twelve-year-old Kristina Kingsly feels like the most unpopular girl in her school. The kids all tease her, and she never seems to fit in. But when Kristina receives an unusual Christmas gift, she suddenly finds herself transported to the land of Bernovem: home of dwarfs, gnomes, fairies, talking animals, and the evil Queen Sentiz.
In Bernovem, Kristina not only fits in, but she’s also honored as “the chosen one” (the only one who can release the land from Queen Sentiz’s control). But it’s not as simple as it seems. To save Bernovem, she must place the famous “Warble” in its final resting place. And she must travel through the deep forest, climb a treacherous mountain, and risk capture by the queen’s “zelbocks” before she reaches her destination. Guided by her new fairy friends, Clover and Looper and by Prince Werrien, a teenage boy, as well as an assortment of other characters, Kristina sets off on a perilous journey that not only tests her strength but her heart.
My Reader Review
The plight of Kristina Kingsly touched my heart in the first few pages of the book. I was that girl everyone on the bus taunted and made fun of. Kristina’s reactions were so typical of kids who are being bullied: She tried her best to stand up to the criticism and not appear hurt by it.
What Kristina didn’t know that fateful day on the bus was that an unexpected Christmas gift from her teacher would change her life forever. That very same night Kristina is transported to another dimension called Bernovem where she learns her arrival was part of an ancient prophecy. She is the chosen child who will restore peace to the land and reinstate the rightful monarchs.
Kristina will meet many friends and foes in her journey to replace the magical orb to its rightful place at the top of the mountain. Kristina isn’t the only one who magically appears in Bernovem. Anyone or anything that touched the box containing the Warble suddenly appears in Bernnovem too.
Victoria Simcox has spun a delightful tale of friendship, compassion, courage, and determination. The characters represent the good and evil children face each day in a tale that will engage even the most reluctant reader. Kids will see in Hester Crumfield, Graham Kepler, and Davina Pavey why it’s important to try to be more like Kristina.
This is a great read and a copy should be in every school library.
More by Victoria Simcox
The Shard is Victoria Simcox’s fast-paced, intricately woven sequel to The Warble. The book takes Kristina Kingsly and her schoolmates back to Bernovem…and into a thrilling, often dangerous adventure.
Kristina’s stay at summer horse camp is horrible, to say the least. It’s all because Hester and Davina are there, too, making her life miserable. When Hester’s cruel prank goes terribly wrong, sending the three girls back to the magical land.
In Bernovem, Kristina is excited to see her former friend, Prince Werrien. When he invites her to sail with him on his ship to his homeland Tezerel, Kristina can’t refuse.
Kristina is reunited with her gnome, dwarf, animal, fairy friends and best of all, Werrien. Things seem like they couldn’t get any better for Kristina. As Werrien becomes fascinated with an unusual seeing stone, the “Shard,” Kristina becomes haunted by a ghostlike hag.
Kristina struggles against suspicion, guilt, illness, and ultimately the one who wants to possess her soul. She will soon see it’s in her weakest moment that she will encounter more strength than she has ever known.
My Review of Book 2
I read this second book in the Bernovem Chronicles after reading the first. Yes, the first was that good!!
Kristina and the kids are a bit older than they were in book 1. After returning to our world, life became somewhat normal again. Well, as normal as life can get after you’ve met gnomes, dwarf, fairies, and your dream prince.
Now, I hate to be judgmental, but I know how Kristina must have felt when she suddenly finds herself pulled into Bernovem again with the same kids who annoyed her the first time: Davina Pave (now 17, but acting like a 12-year-old), Hester Crumfield who has only grown more annoying, and Graham Kepler, perhaps the dumbest of them all.
This book delves more deeply into the feeling the now older Kristina has for Prince Werrien. This time around, Kristina will discover that being the “Chosen One” may be a curse instead of a blessing.
Kids who have never felt they “measure-up” will love these books! They are perfect for middle-grade and up readers. Who doesn’t love a book that takes us back in time to a place where we all believed in fairies?
Kristina’s stayed on in the magical land, to join Hector Mysteria. They are in the search for the wizard, Azaril Crimson, who hid Bernovem’s Book of Prophecy in the forsaken land of Jalmara. Queen Sentiz is also back. The queen is in search of a key item―the Medallion. She needs it in order to cast her final spell to rule Bernovem. Things would be much easier for her if only the whereabouts of the Medallion were known.
Join Kristina as she continues on her dangerous journey. She’ll soar high above the land and seas, on the back of a dragon, barely escape the clutches of death, and meet someone from her past she’d never dreamed of seeing in Bernovem.
The whole world of Bernovem is in chaos, thanks to Resucca and his followers.
Kristina and company start out at Finimus Island―no more romantic, orchid scented, and breezy but raging with typhoons.
Sentiz and her followers have given the citizens of the lands two choices―become Irguls or face a horrific death.
Haunted by the gruesome old hag and the serpent, as well as dealing with her own personal teenage dilemmas, Kristina continues her mission of saving the lands.
Get ready for a whirlwind of events to transpire as well as an ending that will change the course of everything in this grand finale of The Bernovem Chronicles.
About the Author, Victoria Simcox
Victoria Simcox was born in Scarborough, Ontario, Canada, to an Austrian immigrant mother and a Dutch immigrant father.
She now calls Western Washington home. Besides her writing career, Victoria taught elementary-school art for several years. Her past times are writing, reading, painting watercolors, hiking and spending time with her hubby of 28 years. She likes to read theological as well as some fantasy genres. Two of her favorite authors are R.C. Sproul and C.S. Lewis.