Monday, March 4, 2013

Cragbridge Hall, Book 1 by Chad Morris

Chad Morris is a writer friend of mine. I met him and his lovely wife Shelly online a couple of years ago, and we've had the opportunity to socialize at a number of writerly meet and greets. 

Well, Chad's got a book coming out this week called Cragbridge Hall, Book 1. It's a delightful middle grade story . . . but he's not going to any book launches.

Why, you wonder? 

Because his nine-year-old daughter had surgery last week to remove a brain tumor. As you can imagine, Chad and Shelly aren't worrying about the release of Chad's book. 

So, with Chad and Shelly so busy with real-life issues, I want to help   spread the word around. I had the opportunity to read Cragbridge Hall when I signed up to be part of a traveling ARC--I was even the first person on the list! 

What can I say about it? I LOVED this book. Here's the review I posted after I read it:

Imagine a school in the year 2074 where students don't read history, but watch it happen around them; where running in gym class isn't around a track, but up a virtual mountain; and where learning about animals means becoming one through an avatar.

Welcome to Cragbridge Hall, the most advanced and prestigious school in the world. Twin siblings Abby and Derick Cragbridge are excited as new students to use their famed grandfather's inventions that make Cragbridge Hall so incredible. But when their grandfather and parents go missing, the twins begin following a trail of clues left by their grandfather. They must find out where their family is, learn who they can trust, and discover what secrets are hidden within Cragbridge Hall.

Abby and Derick soon realize they are caught in a race with a fierce adversary to discover their grandfather's greatest secret--a dangerous discovery that could alter both history and reality.
This is the best middle grade book I've read in a while. I loved it.
This book has a flavor of Percy Jackson in that the storyline is an interesting (and exciting) way to tease the reader with snippets--but of history rather than mythology. And just like the Percy Jackson books, this made me want to find out more about the historical events and people. The thing that I really found charming was the clever way Morris wove historical events through the tale and then let what the characters learned from history be part of handling various things that happen to Abby and Derick. 
Imagine that. Learning from history!
You don't know who you can trust as you move through the story, and I found it easy to sympathize with the kids as they tried to figure out how to proceed.
And all I can say is Carol rocks.
I've already purchased a copy to give to my nine-year-old grandson. I have no doubt his older sister will be sneaking it from him as soon as she can. She's thirteen, and it's just the kind of book she'd enjoy, too.

Goodreads         Amazon

And if you want to help make a little girl smile, do up a picture of yourself with a mustache and post it on FB for Chad to share.


  1. First of all, this is so kind of you! I will be posting about this now that I know. And I will be purchasing a copy or two of the book!

    I have a tumor behind my left eye and have had to have surgery so I can at least understand the pain that comes with it, thought it sounds like their case is more severe.

    They are in my prayers!

  2. *hugs* Konstanz. I hope you're doing okay now.

    My mother died when I was 14 from complications following brain tumor surgery. Any time a child suffers or is in danger hits home, but this one gets me where I live because the loss of my mother changed my life forever.

  3. Awe.. very sweet of you.

    Hugs and chocolate,

    Will share.

  4. That is really awesome of you to help Chad. Prayers for his daughter.

  5. I wish the best for Chad's daughter. It is wonderful that you're helping out and spreading the word about his book.

  6. That is great of you to give him some exposure! Wow, that would be tough as a parent to work through--my heart goes out to him.

    Off to tweet!

  7. Wonderful thing to do, hope his daughter is doing well.

  8. Glad you're spotlighting Chad's book. It looks good. I posted about it on Facebook. Hope Chad's daughter is doing well.

  9. I'm planning on posting about this next week after I finish reading his book. The two of them are awesome!

  10. Oh, life, you crazy B...

    What a cool sounding story though! And I've seen that cover many times and admired it. Sending Chad and Shelly nothing but good thoughts for their daughter's recovery and the success of the book.

  11. Hope his daughter is doing well first and foremost, that is the main thing. Great spotlight too.

  12. Really glad more people are getting involved with Chad and his family during this tough time. I just can't imagine...

    Wonderful post and review

  13. I just read about this on another blog. I hope everything goes well for Maddie. No child go through something like that.

    I love the cover!!!!

  14. It's so great you're doing this. And the book looks interesting.


  15. Very kind of you to help Chad out! I tweeted about his book earlier. It's not much...but it's something, right?

    Best wishes for his daughter!!

  16. This book sounds awesome. So nice of you to promote it NOW.

  17. Sounds like an amazing story. I love the futuristic school settings. :) Thanks for sharing.

  18. Wow, Chad's book sounds awesome and the cover is spectacular. Hope all goes well for his little girl.


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