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Thursday, September 15, 2016

Blog Tour, Review & Giveaway: un/FAIR by Steven Harper

Title: un/FAIR
Series: N/A
Author: Steven Harper
Publisher: Month9Books
Publication Date: September 06, 2016
Pages: 214
Genres: Children's Fiction, Fantasy
Source: ARC

It's difficult enough to live in the neighborhood "freakazoid" house. It's even more difficult when you're autistic and neither your family nor best friend really understands you. So when Ryan November wakes up on his eleventh birthday with the unexpected ability to see the future, he braces himself for trouble. But even his newfound power doesn't anticipate that the fair folk--undines, salamanders, gnomes, and sylphs--want him dead, dead, dead. Ryan races to defend himself and his family against unrelenting danger from the fairy realm so he can uncover the truth about his family history--and himself. Except as Ryan's power grows, the more enticing the fairy realm becomes, forcing him to choose between order and chaos, power and family. And for an autistic boy, such choices are never cut and dry.

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I received this book for free from the publisher via Chapter by Chapter in exchange for an honest review.

This was such an exciting children's/middle grade read! It was very creative and I think that it will definitely hold the attention of younger readers. I intend on reading this to my kids at bedtime!

If you've read the synopsis, you will know that the main character is an eleven year old boy with autism. Ryan's world is put right out there for you right from the first page. I love the diversity! And I love how the author spun the autism into the story giving it a fantastical origin. You really felt the main character's struggles with autism, and the struggles of those that love him while they deal with him having autism. We also get a small glimpse at social status in Ryan's best friend, Alison. She comes from a poor family, her family doesn't really pay much attention to her, and her father drank himself to death. So the book does encompass many stigmas.

The fantasy elements of the book were convincing and imaginative. The plot plays out quite nicely, and in such a way that I think young readers will be able to follow things without issues. There are details, but not so much as to overwhelm younger readers. 

The characters were especially likable. I really enjoyed this book because the children in the book act like children. In many books, if something horrible happens the kids whip themselves into action immediately knowing what grown up thing needs to be done. When Ryan's parents and aunts disappear and there is impending danger to him and Alison, he doesn't know what to do. He is frightened and has to work through it, which is way more realistic. This IS a fantasy, but set in modern day. A typical eleven year old would be totally lost in the same situations that Ryan was in. I loved the way that the author handled this.

Overall, this book was fantastic! I have no doubt that young readers will love it, and I think that adult readers would enjoy it as well. I certainly did!

Steven Harper/Piziks is the author of multiple fantasy and science fiction novels written for adults, notably the Clockwork Empire and Silent Empire series for Roc as Steven Harper and movie novelizations and tie ins for Pocket Books as Steven Piziks (IDENTITY, THE EXORCIST: THE BEGINNING, GHOST WHISPERER: THE PLAUGE ROOM). He’s also the father of an autistic son.

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