Reviews

RETURN TO FINKLETON – REVIEWS
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Cameron rated it 5 of 5 stars false

 
“Finkleton truly is a magical place…”

I started reading this right after I finished the first book “The Magic of Finkleton.” Even though it’s aimed at much younger children, I still really enjoyed the first book because it took me back to those days of reading “The Magic Tree House” series. Needless to say, I was excited to see what was in store for the Finkle children next, so I’m very thankful to K. C. Hilton for being amazing and sending me “Return to Finkleton,” the second volume in the ser…more “Finkleton truly is a magical place…”

I started reading this right after I finished the first book “The Magic of Finkleton.” Even though it’s aimed at much younger children, I still really enjoyed the first book because it took me back to those days of reading “The Magic Tree House” series. Needless to say, I was excited to see what was in store for the Finkle children next, so I’m very thankful to K. C. Hilton for being amazing and sending me “Return to Finkleton,” the second volume in the series. Upon finishing this book, I gotta’ say, as much as I loved “The Magic of Finkleton,” “Return to Finkleton” was even better!

I don’t want to say anything about the plot so I don’t spoil anything for those who haven’t read the first book, but the story basically follows all three Finkle children from the first book and tells of their adventures in Finkleton. This book takes place a couple years after book one, so the siblings are a little older and a little wiser. And it’s pretty clear that the story has grown along with the children as well. This book has a lot more action and adventure than “The Magic of Finkleton” did and also features some more serious and dire situations for the children. Therefore, the story is aimed at slightly older middle grade readers, ages 9-12.

Simply put, I thought “Return to Finkleton” was marvelous! After I finished reading that last page, I got a big smile on my face and said, “Wow… that was great!” I think what made this even better than the first book, for me, was the fact that I felt more immersed in the story. “The Magic of Finkleton” more-or-less told the story, almost like a bedtime story. That’s a great technique and it worked for that book, but in this one I felt more involved in what was going on, so the pacing was much faster.

Another thing I loved about this novel was the greater growth that the characters went through. In book one, they learned the average things kids need to know at that age like keeping your promises and working together. In this one however, the characters are crossing over into the next stage of childhood where they have to deal with much more serious things like fixing their mistakes and having to do things on their own, no matter how scary.

This book also had a ton of twists and things that I, as a young adult, didn’t even see coming. These twists, as well as the tone and magic of the story, remind me less of “The Magic Tree House” books this time around and more of “The Spiderwick Chronicles,” which is one of my all-time favorite series. If you love those books, I think you’ll really like this one. Anyway, I’m very excited to read the third and final book in the series, “Saving Finkleton,” once it’s released. Bring on the magic, K.C.!

~C

 
You can find this review on: Goodreads
 
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RETURN TO FINKLETON – Kirkus Indie Book Reviews  – May 3, 2012

A father leads his family hiking one evening to see an unforgettable sight: thousands of glowworms lighting up Finkleton Valley.

In The Magic of Finkleton, the first book in this series, Jack, Lizzy and Robert realize their family acquired not just a shop, but a shop with magical secrets, including the ability to control weather. After mastering the weather and reaping two years of perfect crops, two of the children find a room hidden beneath the library floor. Initially, it seems to be just a room with more books, but closer inspection reveals some peculiarities, such as a book that glows, and one that feels cold to the touch. A rather ordinary book about memories seems harmless, but odd things start happening after Robert takes it with him upstairs to browse: A lightning strike causes a fire that burns the house of one of Finkleton’s leading citizens, and one of the children carelessly reveals the magical secrets found in Uncle Harry’s shop, encouraging a greedy outsider to pursue owning land in Finkleton. Robert believes he can right some of his past mistakes, but he accidentally breaks a clock which has the ability to move a person forward and backward through time. Meanwhile, the children work tirelessly to fix their town.

In Hilton’s lively book, she creates a thriving town as the setting, using images children can easily imagine and appreciate. Miss Caroline, a resident devoted to helping the children, needs more detail and history, considering her central role. The story sharply focuses on the three children and their actions, which young readers will appreciate. At first glance, some of the magical items in this book may remind readers of Harry Potter—a clock that controls time and a book that can answer direct questions—but their use here is unique. The plot ambles along and presents situations that, beneath their supernatural surfaces, readers will likely find familiar.

Suitable for children 9–11 years old, this continuation of a magical adventure is a pleasure to read.

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April 13, 2012
Literary Classics Book Awards and Reviews
5 Stars!
 
In KC Hilton’s newest book, Return to Finkleton, siblings, Jack, Lizzie and Robert find themselves immersed in adventure once again.  Two short years after moving to Finkleton, Lizzie stumbles upon a secret so incredible, it simply cannot be contained.  After over-hearing Lizzie speak of it with Jack, Robert sets out to find the source of her secret.  As a result of his discovery, Robert unwittingly causes a calamitous series of events.  Distraught and ridden with feelings of guilt, he sets his mind to making things right . . . and in the process, embarks upon a magical journey.
 
Hilton has done it again.  Young readers, prepare to find a comfortable spot on the edge of your seats.  –Sure to be a favorite with youngsters, Return to Finkleton is enrapturing!
 
Return to Finkleton earns the Literary Classics Seal of Approval, a designation reserved for those books which uphold the rigorous criteria set forth by the Children’s Literary Classics review committee, a team comprised of individuals with backgrounds in publishing, editing, writing, illustration and graphic design.
 
LITERARY CLASSICS Book Reviews & Awards http://literaryclassicsreviews.com
 
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4.0 out of 5 stars Returning to the Magic!
April 7, 2012
 
Bunny Cates (Madisonville, KY United States)
 
This review is from: Return to Finkleton (Volume 2) (Paperback)
I love this entire series. I really liked book one, the Magic of Finkleton (read my review here). As much as I liked book one, I LOVED book two!
In book two the kids are a little older, and so is the writing style. It’s almost like Mrs Hilton is letting the kid readers – grow along with the story. Book One was more for say 6 and up with help reading the bigger words. Book Two is like ages 8 and up, no help required. So it’s gone from Childrens book to Middle Grade, if that makes sense. I think it’s fantastic.
The Return to Finkleton is book two in the series, but it is also written well enough that it can be read as a stand alone. If you haven’t read book one, you won’t be lost at all. I love series when they are written this way. Each book is it’s own complete story, which in the end will go together to tell the BIGGER story.
For the series itself, in my mind I can see so many possibilities on where the storylines could go! I mean these kids have their entire lives to live, so much can happen between 8 and 80, you know? I am glad that another book is already in the works. There is a sneak peek of it at the end of RtF , “Saving Finkelton”!
Character wise, each of the three siblings (Robert, Jack, and Lizzie) are very well fleshed out. Their personalities are as defined as their looks, which in my opinion, most childrens books miss the mark on. I love that they are ALL smart, whether it be book smart or “street smart”. Their personalities help to define the family dynamic, and I love that as well. So many books now a days have characters with a strong sense of self. So strong that the sense of “FAMILY” gets lost along the way. Not in Finkleton. In the Finkleton series, “FAMILY” is forefront. We need to see more of that in our childrens literature!
Plot wise, there is nothing I want to tell you that’s not already stated in the synopsis. This story is as much a mystery as it is an adventure. I would hate myself if I thought I “spoiled” the book for anyone! I will say that even though it is the “MAGIC” of Finkleton series, there are no witches or anything like that in it. It’s more a “fairy tale” type magic. Think faerie type magic and you are leading in the right direction. BUT with that said – there are no fae in Finkleton either. Or are there? hmmmmm LOL.
I’m a fan of this entire series, and not just because I helped edit the second book! I think it’s fantastic for little ones. This one helps in teaching the lesson of “accountability” and the repercussions of ones actions.
Mom Notes: Great series! I would say good for age 7 (advanced readers)+
Videos and giveaway for this title are available on my site. Dont miss our EPIC Return to Finkleton Giveaway! hosted on bunnycates.com
 
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March 21, 2012  5 of 5 stars
RETURN TO FINKLETON is magical, whimsical, and a fun
journey into the marvelous land of Finkleton!
 
 
Let me say this: I love middle grade novels.
Sure, I’m 14, but middle grade novels had that little spark that can take you
into a magical place that, almost always, does not focus on romance. K.C.
Hilton’s latest novel is one of the best middle grade novels I’ve ever
read.
 
 
Two words: The. Imagination. This world that Hilton
has created is fun, magical, but also haunting. This vivid and bright place has
the one of the best storytellers telling the book. Every little detail of the
book played out perfectly clear inside my head, and I didn’t want to set the
book down.
 
 
K.C. Hilton also has the magnetic writing style that
entices the reader into the story and doesn’t let them leave the world of
Finkleton until the very last page. This fun experience had me actually
dreaming about what would happen next to our beloved
characters.
 
 
Overall, RETURN TO FINKLETON is a wondrous and great
middle grade novel that I highly recommend you go read!
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5.0 out of 5 stars
Magical Read! – March 17, 2012
This review is from: Return to Finkleton (Volume 2) (Paperback)
(Spoiler Alert)

In this sequel to The Magic of Finkleton, taking place two years later, the Finkle
children, Jack, Lizzy, and Robert have adjusted to living in the town of
Finkleton. The family is still running their late uncle’s shop, in which the
children discover a secret room full of mysterious books. Robert sneaks into the
room and pulls a magical lever that causes lighting to strike a nearby home.
Feeling guilty, Robert is determined to change his mistake, and with the help a
magical clock, he might be able to do so. First, he accidentally travels to the
future, where he sees the outcome of his actions.

I thoroughly enjoyed the first book and eagerly waited for the second book to be released. I read the book in one sitting! Just like the original, the sequel has a dazzling cover but this time with a magical clock. The sequel focuses more on the youngest child Robert as he travels through time to undo a fire that he caused. My favorite character still has to be Lizzy, as she and I have a love for books. This time around, we meet some new characters and get to explore some of the other shops in Finkleton. Mr. Lowsley returns as the villain, even more determined to find out what or who is responsible for the magical occurrences in Finkleton. KC Hilton has once again created a wonderfully original fantasy that both children and adults will love. I like how the author leaves a few unanswered questions for the reader to think about. Who is Mrs. Caroline? Luckily we don`t have to wait long because we get a sneak peak at the third book Saving Finkleton, in which I cannot wait to read, in the back of the book. I recommend the book to everyone!

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March 15, 2012 – Goodreads
S. Bell  5 of 5 stars
Oh yeah, I read this and forgot to mention it! I read it on a plane sometime in the abyss between March 10th and 12th, so I’m just gonna say it was the 11th because I can’t recall exactly when I read it (though I think it might even have been at KL airport, which wason the 11th) and the timezones were changing madly anyway, so who knows really what date went with what day? I mean, I flew out of London on 10pm Saturday and 24 hours later it was 9am Monday in Melbourne. And this is why I keep waking up at 5am and crashing by like 8:30.BUT I DIGRESS.This book is awesome!! I loved the first book in the series, but I think I might have actually liked this one even more. Omg, I don’t know. It’s the perfect follow-up, though. The perfect second novel, while the first one was the perfect first/introduction. It’s very fast-paced and gripping, and everything fits together so neatly. I didn’t want to put it down. So I didn’t! It’s just the right length to read all in one sitting 😀 And still has that lovely Enid Blyton-esque charm to it, and still makes me think that this would make a freakin’ awesome TV series.
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March 11, 2012 
Reviewed by Rita V for Readers Favorite
5 Stars
“Return To Finkleton” is a wonderful mystery book for children aged 9-12. Written by KC Hilton, this is the second book in the ‘Finkleton Series’. Two years have passed and Jack, Lizzy and Robert are still discovering magical items and protecting their treasured secrets in  their late Uncle Harry’s shop. The magical secrets must be kept in the right hands because of greedy out-of-towners and citizens trying to get their hands on it for their own selfish purposes and financial gains. The weather, crops and the town’s survival rests in the hands of the three very wise and responsible children. But will they be able to protect their secrets with the overwhelming whirlpool of greed attacking them from all directions? There are 28 action packed and fast flowing chapters that include everything from the magical valley, mysterious visitors, new magical items to discover, and ghosts. As an added bonus, children will learn the moral of the story which is that greed can become an overwhelming hunger. The smallest of human acts can lead to the most destructive and loathsome acts of mankind.

KC Hiltons does it again in this magical adventure book for pre-teens! Though I am 39 years old I loved every minute of reading this book as if I were a child again. Furthermore, this book has received many prestigious literary and Best Fiction Awards recently! The cover of the book is eye catching and captivating. The mysterious antiqued and gold applique look of the book makes it easy to pick up and hard to put down. The plot is solid and flows easily for children to read. It also is a great second book to the first in the series; “The Magic of Finkleton”. I can easily see this series made into a movie series on the big screen and would be disppointed if it doesn’t make it into motion pictures. I highly recommend it for all children aged 9 and up. I cannot wait for KC Hilton’s next mystery book “Saving Finkleton”, and many more books after that. KC Hilton is a gifted writer and truly has put together a masterpiece in each book that compliments the series nicely.

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Jan 19, 2012
Donna (Goodreads)  rated it        5 of 5 stars
Although I didn’t read the first one, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I liked the characters and all the little magical things that can happen in Finkleton! I sincerely cant wait for the next one! You have me HOOKED! Thanks for the Goodread!
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Jan 14, 2012
Ashlee  (Goodreads)  rated it        5 of 5 stars
Just a note: This was an ARC, so the final version may be slightly different.I recall reviewing the The Magic of Finkleton last year as “exciting, fast-paced, and magical.” The second installment is soooo much more… well, MORE than the first.  There is no “sophomore slump” with her second novel (although, I guess technically this is Hilton’s third. Shame on me for not having read her 90 Miles to Freedom by now).  Anyway, the second Finkleton is cleverly written (giving the right amount of description so as to move the story along, but not bore its younger readers), slyly plotted (you’re never exactly sure what’s going to happen next), and will be, if this book is any indication, a staple for young readers for many generations to come.
Revolving around a clock and a hidden library with a bright blue book, the Finkle children are once again protecting their village from both weather-related issues and blunders, as well as from the odious Mr. Lowsely. Can Robert fix a grievous accident in time? Can he keep the family’s secret in the family? Read this novel and find out just how exciting the magical world of Finkleton really is. I eagerly await the third and final installment to Finkleton; I also eagerly await Hilton’s many other novels that I hope are to come.
My advice? Read the books. But please, keep in mind they ARE middle grade. Don’t be that person who complains that it reads too young – they’re for kids, read the description. More importantly, read the books.
KC Hilton

KC Hilton

K.C. is a wife, mother and entrepreneur. She self-published the award-winning Finkleton series and My Name is Rapunzel under the pseudonym K.C. Hilton. She currently resides in the great state of Kentucky with her amazing husband and spoiled dog. K.C.’s husband refers to her as Hobbit size and claims that she is “nuttier than a fruit cake.” She owns a complete set of pink tools, believes in aliens and secretly wants to become a badass ninja. In her spare time, she can be found daydreaming about leaving work early to eat chocolate and drink wine. Sometimes her dreams come true.

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