Today I am reviewing Middle Grade/Tween book titled Fearless Joe Dearborne by Lisa Whitney Mitchell. More about the author:
Lisa Whitney Mitchell lives in Florida with her husband, two sons, and their dog. When she’s not writing, she practices law. Fearless Joe Dearborne is her first novel.
Some might say he’s courageous, while others would say he’s daring, maybe even a little crazy. But when Joe Dearborne risked his life and ran into a burning building to save a puppy, the local newspaper referred to him as “fearless”—and that’s a pretty big title for a sixth-grader to live up to.
Plus, Joe already has plenty else to worry about. After other daring feats in the past, Joe promised his father he wouldn’t do anything dangerous again, and, alas, he’s just broken that promise.
But whatever trouble he expects to get into with his father, and despite the dangers he’s triumphed over in the past, nothing could prepare Joe for what he’s about to encounter when a cold, bitterness creeps into his home.
A mysterious and peculiar woman named Mrs. Chill has just been hired to care for Joe while his father is away on business. In no time, however, Joe discovers that she’s up to more than cooking and cleaning, and she has plans to destroy his family. Joe’s effort to save them results in perilous, sometimes humorous, encounters, and leads him on a journey through the threatening wilderness where he faces his greatest challenge yet.
The book cover is really nice, particularly the big, bold font used for the title. It carries the feeling of ‘fearlessness’ in it. I kind of relate it to some game I used to play when I was younger – Indiana Jones!. The devilish character in the background shown on the cover, is a coyote and I love how artistically it’s shown. The protagonist is a sixth grader, Joe Dearborne. He doesn’t have the feeling of fear in him!. That makes him do things like saving a puppy by rushing into a burning house and more. Thus he earns the name Fearless Joe Dearborne!
However, a casual comment from a fan of his, makes him doubt himself and he does something reckless just to know if he could experience fear. Unfortunately, he does and something within him changes overnight. Joe is so modest and humble. He doesn’t lap up the attention everyone gives him, instead he likes to keep to himself. He looks up to Trent Rapids, a survival expert who has traveled the world and wrote a series about his experiences. Joe happens to be in a situation whereby he takes inspiration from what he read and applies it to his situation, thus saving the day!.
There are some hilarious events in this book that are equally given importance as are the dangerous ones. The author has really thought out and written an excellent story, managing the level of danger perfectly. I didn’t expect that level of danger, but it indeed is so thrilling and exciting. I couldn’t put this book down and soon, I was flying through the pages, wanting to know more. The author has successfully woven an exciting story!
There are many important characters in the story but the most important one is Mrs. Chill, who as her name suggests, is a cold woman, with a heart of stone. She is a conniving lady, with ulterior motives, who happens to be appointed as Joe’s housekeeper. Joe soon understands that this lady is upto no good. If he doesn’t do something, there will be several deaths. Was he successful and did he emerge a hero?. You got to read the books to know more!. This book is meant for kids of age 8 and up. Joe can easily inspire young readers, make them more brave and perceptive. What an excellent read!. I cannot believe this is this author’s very first novel!
I give this book 5 out of 5, which by Goodreads standards mean that ‘it was amazing’!
Links to the book
Source : I was provided a complimentary ebook copy for review purpose. All opinions are 100% my own.