Book Review – Maya and the Book of Everything

Maya and the Book of Everything

Paperback: 310 pages

Publisher: Hinterlands Press; 1 edition (25 Nov. 2016)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 0997845309

ISBN-13: 978-0997845303

You’ve probably seen the blog Notes From the Hinterland by Laurie Graves – this is her book.

I’m probably not the best person to review a fantasy book for young adults as my experience started with the Narnia books, experienced a gap, then started again with Harry Potter. Even then, it finished after the first few Potter books because they got too big to hold.

On that subject, did you know that there are 257,045 words in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix? Here are some word counts for famous novels. Bigger isn’t always better.

I’m not sure where Maya stands in the matter of word count, but in terms of quality it’s up there with the books I’m using as comparisons.

The action starts early and carries on at a brisk pace with plenty of twists. There are well-developed characters, a murder, a stabbing, some soppy stuff, a bit of morality and a cliff-hanger ending.

It’s ahead of most of the Harry Potter novels in being shorter, which makes for a tighter and more enjoyable read. It’s ahead of the Narnia books because the odd spot of morality that appears isn’t rammed down your throat: even as a ten-year-old I objected to having religion rammed down my throat by C. S. Lewis.

So there you have it – Maya is a better read than Harry Potter.

That will look good as a quote on the cover of Volume 2.

Where it falls short (and this is just my opinion) is that the Potter and Narnia books have a more developed environment. You could, of course say that it is uncluttered, but I would like to see a bit more detail and development.

And that’s about it. I’m now looking forwards to reading the sequel.




11 thoughts on “Book Review – Maya and the Book of Everything

  1. Pingback: A Note About Laurie Graves – Author, Raconteur and Eater of Ice Cream | quercuscommunity

  2. hermitsdoor

    Great set-up quote for Laurie!

    I too grew up on the Narnia Chronicles, theology aside. I could not get past the first 100 pages of Tolkien’s Hobbit, guess I was stuck in the Hobbit House, you could say. Star Wars came along during my adolescent days… you might say I have thing for Buddist influenced, green puppets. Not having children, Harry Potter piled up too many volumes for me to try to catch up on, though friends who read them with their children credit them with reviving a generation for reading. As I speculated (that’s as close as I will get to prophecy), The Great Library Series may speak to a new generation of young readers.

    Thanks for directing me to your review.

    1. quercuscommunity

      Harry Potter – too long they got, as the Green One would say.

      My kids grew up reading Pokemon cards, comic books and sports reports. Our local librarian told me this was better than reading nothing, which is (probably) true.

      I’m looking forward to the next Maya book and would love to see the series grow as I think it has a lot to offer.

      1. hermitsdoor

        I recall that after the first Star Wars movie was a hit, Lucas had a plan to produce 9 movies over 27 years. Well, 40 years later, he is almost there. And, with Dinsey owning the franchise, and an official “canon” of those 9 movie plots, and the “legends” series of books (sort of like the Gospel of Thomas) Star Wars movies are likely to outlive us! I see light saber duels for some years to come. -Oscar

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