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1.0 out of 5 starsIt’s About Young Thugs, not About Ninjas!
Reviewed in the United States on July 28, 2019
There is simply no accounting for tastes, right? So many readers apparently “loved” this book, finding it “awesome,” but my 9-year-old boy and I found it to be rude, mean-spirited, and very poorly written. We will avoid this author from now on. My boy was reading this book aloud to me and we were quite interested up until the “ninjas” appeared in the trees. After that, it went downhill, fast, for both of us. The gang of mean (yes, mean) ninja-wanna-be kids had actually bound the hands of a student they had ganged up on and held him captive, and this was right off the bat. And at the end of the story, the hero’s face got literally beaten to a bloody pulp by the gang leader (Where were the school personnel—and why didn’t a “good kid” quickly seek help)? From the beginning, the two cousins reported none of this dangerous physical aggressiveness to their teachers, but, instead, began constantly bickering and spouting sarcastic remarks back and forth to each other, on any subject, none of which were even slightly amusing. The author proceeded to toss out more mysterious occurrences, but never solving their mystery in the book. Examples: It was questioned by the two cousins as to why there were no footprints or signs of activity at the site where the kid was kidnapped and tied up. Never got an explanation. And later, it was never explained how the gang leader managed to get to the money from fund-raising in the first place, in order to steal it. No easy feat, but he managed, no problem! It became obvious right away that this author is very immature, lazy, totally inept at moving a story along with logic, and has to “pad it with fluff” to keep it moving—or else, he just decided to rely on a child-reader’s naivete and hoped the lack of explanations for events would simply never be questioned. The story did have potential, and the author was all over the place with hints about interesting sideline subject matter that might come up later to enhance the storyline, but they were never mentioned again (ADHD, allergy to bee-stings, etc.). Another random bit of story padding which my 9-year-old and I both found annoying was the frequent reference to the gym teacher’s “laziness.” This was rude, disrespectful and totally irrelevant and unnecessary. I could go on, but the intended takeaway here is that the story was NOT about ninjas, but rather, was about how many dead-end-questions-without-answers, or how many cheap-shot, scary or gruesomely shocking occurrences (3-4 mentions of blood from the battered face) he could throw in to keep his young audience interested. The entire “moral object lesson” of standing up for what is right could have been told better in 5 pages, without all the pandering to a kid’s fascination with violence. Nice touch though that, that after the boy’s face had been repeatedly pummeled and bloodied, an adult finally appeared and suggested that maybe the kid should go see the school nurse. You THINK?
My 2 cents review as a parent would begin with the fairly “blah” story. Not much to it. But it’s “okay” I suppose. Not very much excitement nor cool ninja action. My 3 complaints would be that firstly, the good guys in the story decide to steal a purse as requested by the ninja leader. So not the greatest ethical choice for our heroes. Next, the final battle showdown is a bit bloody & violent in our current PC age. Not really necessary to get so graphic in my opinion. Finally, why the author thought the line “why don’t you two get a room?” was a good choice for a kids book is beyond me. Why? Doesn’t advance the story. It’s a throwaway waste of a line and anyone writing a children’s book should have thought better than that I’d have hoped. Just dumb. I’m no prude but maybe a little better editing & thought on those 3 points could have gone a long way to a more positive review. My kid enjoyed it enough so maybe 3-4 stars from my child’s perspective. I’d give it a 2 & average it out to a 3 between the two of us. I’m on the fence about continuing this series.
It tends to be difficult to keep my son's interest in anything other than videogames and YouTube. The downside of a pushbutton, instant gratification era. This story not only kept his attention, but he'd complain when we had to stop reading. Both of us greatly enjoyed it. Plus it helped teach good moral decisions. My son begged me to buy part 2 and I will be definitely purchasing it. Ninjas and pirates in one story!?! How cool is that? ;)
My 10-year-old son (headed to sixth grade) hates to read. I found this book and thought we'd give it a shot. He LOVED it. He has read the entire series, and has asked for the other books by this author. I've never seen him read like this. He is sad to see this series end. Not only has he read the books, he has talked about them and laughed about parts as he tells us about them. Definitely recommended!
Pretty good book for my 2nd and 4th grader. The started reading this book series last year and continued reading them. They asked me for the whole set. I would recommend to other moms. I notice though, that as you go up in the series the writing gets smaller, so be mindful of that.
I bought this book for my 11 years old son because he didn't like to read at all! So I was looking for a book that can atrack him and keep him reading and that's ecxactly what happen. Now he likes reading and enjoys reading fiction books.
I really like.. love this book this is the 3rd time I’ve read it and each time I find something new I hadn’t read quite well last time. I recommend this book to people who are adventurous, love fantasy, and don’t have a problem with blood or bullies cause ye. I gave it 4 star because I don’t really like blood and in the end there is quite a lot but he treated it like a champ. If the author reads this (which probably not) keep up the good work.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 7, 2020
My grandson hates reading. So to encourage him I’ve tried various methods to break the phone/computer/flatscreen obsession. Well I’ve cracked it with these books. He is now on number 4. And reads a chapter each night in bed. He find them funny and easy reading and good stories. I throughly recommend them to all parents. Not cheep but a good investment to engage both boys and girls
this series is so good i read each book twice and my favorite bit was when chase found out that faith was the white ninja so good i wish i was him i recomend his book to all people and by the way what is with the bad reviews its so good :) #best