I received this book from Netgalley/the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
I have three daughters, so I am always looking for new books for them to read. I was very excited about the opportunity to read Warren the 13th and the All-Seeing Eye. This middle grade novel by Tania del Rio seemed like the sort of book that we would enjoy.
Warren is a young boy who lives in a hotel that his family owns. He is the 13th Warren, and the hotel is his, but his uncle is serving as conservator until Warren becomes an adult. Unfortunately, his uncle has done a terrible job, and the hotel has fallen into disrepair. Even worse, his uncle recently married a witch named Annaconda who has been tearing the hotel apart looking for a magical artifact- the All-Seeing Eye. Warren has tried to warn his uncle, but the man is so besotted that he cannot see that anything is wrong. Warren is going to have to use all of his resources if he is going to find the All-Seeing eye before his wicked Aunt Annaconda. This book is full of witches, magic, treasure hunters, double crossing, pirates, and even a basement monster named Sketchy.
The illustrations throughout the book add to the fun and funky plot. They are a perfect complement to the Gothic elements throughout the story, and they are very reminiscent of Edward Gorey.
This is a lively story with a lot going on. There are plenty of plot twists, but no one is every truly in peril. Warren is a wonderful protagonist: he has a big heart, and wants nothing more than for his hotel to be as grand as it used to be. Warren is very loyal, and embodies so many good qualities.
I would absolutely recommend Warren the 13th. Author Tania del Rio has a strong background in children’s comics, and this is evident throughout the text. I hope that we can see more of Warren and perhaps some new stories too. This is a fun middle grade novel that should appeal to elementary and middle school students.