Update on ARC AUGUST:
Cover image and summary from goodreads.com. Image links to goodreads book page.
Title: The Ifs
Author: J.D Pooker
Summary: Landon and Broden are brothers. Sometimes they get along. Well, sometimes they don’t. But when they find out who’s behind the weird happenings in their house, they are called to battle.
Battle? Whoa. Not just one of their fun play-battles either, but a real battle in the forest with the most unusual of creatures and the wildest of animals. Can the brothers pull together when they need each other most?
Rating: ★★★☆☆ (3.5 of 5)
My Review: I received this book free from the author in exchange for an honest review. And, honestly? I liked it. It’s definitely a children’s book, and one I’m sure younger children would enjoy even more then I did, but I still really liked it.
I found The Ifs to be in the style of The Spiderwick Chronicles, Swordbird, or a younger version of Fablehaven. I know, I know. I just compared books, which I absolutely hate doing, but since this is a fairly unknown book, I decided to give y’all a few examples of similar books. The writing style was fun and resourceful, though it did take a bit of getting used to. The characters were well-thought out, and I didn’t (as I have in some other multiple POV books) ever mix up which brother was which, or who was talking, which is quite a feat for me.
The story jumped around a bit, but merely for the purpose of switching POV’s, and I think that not only was it handled quite well, but I found myself really enjoying it, and being pulled in even more by the flashbacks and such. The concept of “Ifs” , little people about 6 inches tall with whole cities and farms hidden under and above ground in local forests, is just so fascinating to me, and something I’ve always loved; This book brought back a lot of memories of my childhood. The plot was well-developed and exciting, though it did take about 60 pages to truly pick up speed. All in all, it was a fantastic book, that I really loved.
Content Advisory: Some violence. Death threats made to children. Children injure wild dogs and tiny people, in battle. No actual deaths.
To Sum it Up: Though not my all-time favorite book, it probably ranks among my favorite children’s fantasy adventure books. I’m sure my younger sister would absolutely LOVE it, and I’m looking forward to reading it to her. A fun and thought-provoking fantasy story, with great morals, life lessons, and lots of adventure, The Ifs is a thoroughly enjoyable quick read for younger audiences. Personally, I think this would be a fantastic read-aloud for a young family. J.D. Pooker has a lot of talent, and I’m really looking forward to reading her YA books written under the pseudonym “Pembroke Sinclair”. I recommend this book to ages 6+.
Have you heard of this book before? Have you read it? Did you like it?
Author Q&A with J.D. Pooker:
1. Will there be a sequel, or are Landon & Broden’s adventures over for the time being?
There is a sequel. The publisher has it, but no word on when it will be coming out. I’m also planning on a third book, but I have some other projects to finish first.
2. Did Landon & Broden’s mother ever have experience with Ifs? She says she read about them in a book, but they had a different name, to keep their identities safe… and yet SHE knew their real name.
To be honest, I’m still undecided about that. I have to mull it over in my brain a little longer.
3. I know that your children were inspiration for the main characters, but how did you come up with Ifs?
I actually had a dream one night that I caught a little man in a jar and was feeding him spaghetti. I thought the idea was fun, so I expanded it from there.
4. What author or book has most influenced your writing to date?
I have a Master’s in English, so there have been a lot of authors that have influenced me over the years. My most favorite author when I was a teen was Christopher Pike.
5. Do Ifs exist all over the world, or only in a few places?
All over the world.
6. What did you enjoy most about writing this book?
I really enjoyed imagining how my boys would react if they were put into this situation. They aren’t nearly as old as the kids in the book, so based on how they act now, I had to project what I thought their personalities would be like in the future.
7. Can you tell us a little bit about your other books?
I have several other books that have been published, including some YA zombie novels and a children’s picture book. I also have a few adult titles out. If you are interested, you can find out more about them at my blog at http://pembrokesinclair.blogspot.com/.
Thanks so much for reviewing my book and having me on your blog!
And thank YOU for allowing me to, and for coming onto my blog! It’s been fantastic getting to know you, and reading your book. I wish you all the best with future books, and can’t wait to read your YA ones. :)