Monday, March 28, 2011

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday: The Grey Griffins: The Brimstone Key

Happy MMGM. It is my children's spring break this week, so my blogging will be sparse at best.

This week I picked The Brimstone Key (The Grey Griffins: The Clockwork Chronicles #1). I picked this because I had heard fab things about it and thought more MG steampunk: good. So I matched it up against The Clockwork Three for MGMTD.

The Brimstone Key (The Grey Griffins: The Clockwork Chronicles #1)
By Derek Benz & JS Lewis
Published in 2010.

Other books in The Grey Griffins series (and I recommend as prereq reading):
The Revenge of the Shadow King
The Rise of the Black Wolf
The Fall of the Templar

Other books in The Clockwork Chronicles:
The Relic Hunters (May 2011)
The Changelings (or The Immortals)

The Hook: Four friends with extraordinary powers/talents unknowingly release an old villian, The Clockwork King, from his prison and try to stop him from getting The Brimstone Key, a portal to the shadow world.

Why I liked this book: pacing and action. Chalk-full, maybe even too full but they can turn a page. Pretty much anything magical or of fantasy origin is in this book. From Templars to gnomes to EMPs to hologram training decks to faeries to ....(you think of something because I promise it is mentioned in the book). I do give them cred for using automatons well. Other steampunk just has them in there to count as steampunk but this book really uses them for evil...and good...and everything else. It was quick ride and is great for boys. While there are a couple of girl characters in the book, I would only recommend this to girls who love high fantasy and D&D card games.

Oh, and while this says #1 in this adventure, it is really book 4 for The Grey Griffins series. So read the others, before starting this one, for better context and investment in the characters.

For another review of this book, check out Ben Langhinrchs' post at My Comfy Chair.

And check out other great MMGMers:


  1. I didn't realize this was a continuation of the Shadow King books. The boys in my 11 year old's class read that series a couple years ago, but I haven't yet. Good to know those precede!

  2. Thanks for the linkage, Brooke. I've just posted and linked to you too.

    Great review! MG steampunk rocks.

  3. I read this one before reading the first three books, and although I managed to figure out what was going on just fine, I do wish I'd read the others first--I agree that it would have made me more invested in the characters!

  4. It sounds like such a fun read for my boys and me. Thanks for sharing!