Reviews

The Olivia Brophie Series has won four awards!

 

Winner of the 2012 President's Book Awards Silver Medal
for Children's Literature!




USA Best Book Award 2014 for Sky Island

 


Winner of the Honor Book Award from the Society of School Librarians International

Winner of the People's Choice Award


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Here is a video review of the series from a student in Michigan. They read the series in their class.
video


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The Florida Book Review posted a long review written by Louis K Lowy: http://www.floridabookreview.com/id18.html

"Tozier’s tale is a non-stop Tilt-a-whirl"

"It is a rousing, Tom Sawyer on steroids adventure"

"Tozier was wise to include Olivia’s intimate struggles because they provide depth to the larger, grandiose battle, and ultimately they are the reason we want to root for her."

"Olivia Brophie and the Pearl of Tagelus is written for middle-graders. It is fast paced, larger than life and filled with lessons on Florida habitat, above and below the ground. It is the first in a series, and by the end of this initial offering Olivia is in even more trouble than she was throughout the previous 214 pages. Tighten your harness and hold on, the carnival ride is about to crank into overdrive."


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Listen to a review by Linda Fasulo on WGCU Public Radio

Here is the transcript, but I prefer to hear Linda present it. The mellifluous tone of her voice conveys a layer of opinion that the words themselves only approximate!

"The other night, a 30-something year old contestant on the game show Jeopardy admitted to being particularly fond of reading teen fiction. When asked why, she replied that there is a sense of innocence and wonder in these books that cannot be found in adult novels. It was an interesting comment. And having just finished today's featured novel titled Olivia Brophie and the Pearl of Tagelus by first-time novelist Christopher Tozier, her statement is one with which I fully concur.

In Tozier's novel, premier book in his planned Olivia Brophie series for children ages 8 through 14, readers are introduced to 10 year old Olivia Brophie.  Olivia lives in Wisconsin with her dad and video-game-obsessed younger brother Nathan, or "Gnat" spelled G-N-A-T to Olivia's way of thinking. Her mother is a soldier fighting in Iraq and other than missing her mom, life in Wisconsin has been pretty good for Olivia Brophie. That is, until a package arrived and changed everything. Now, she and Gnat have been sent to live in the Florida scrub with a crazy Aunt and Uncle she didn't know she had. Coral snakes keep leaving her presents. At night, tree frogs write eerie messages in cursive on her window. And bears follow her home from school each day. At least they keep the bullies from bugging her like they had when she first arrived. Yet what Olivia doesn't know but will soon discover, is that bears aren't the only scary things following her home from school. And that far worse things lie in wait in the Florida scrub.

Frankly, I thoroughly enjoyed Olivia Brophie and the Pearl of Tagelus. The book is written in an easy style, simple to follow, easily relatable to its target age-group. The storyline itself is purely magic. And the sense of wonder created by some of its unique characters is truly magic in itself. Take Squirt for example, but then you will have to read the book to figure out who or what he or she really is.

Yet, there is far more to this novel than first meets the eye. Tozier has carefully crafted his prose to illustrate to teens and pre-teens the importance of persevering in the face of adversity and of standing firm in their belief in themselves and in the sure knowledge of their own self-worth. The importance of failure is also explored. By adulthood, most of us have learned that failure is only a beginning, its never an end, but rather the first step on the road to incredible and amazing possibilities. Just ask Olivia Brophie.

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Check out these comments and review from my readers. You will be a believer in how inspiring Olivia is for young readers hungry for a strong but realistic female character. http://www.christophertozier.com/2012/11/strong-female-character-for-kids.html


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Here is an email I received from Shauna, a young reader. She even entered into the Olivia Brophie Artwork Contest.


Dear Mr.Tozier,
     It's Shauna, and I just finished your book today! I could NOT put it down! It boggled my mind and all together amazed me! When I first picked it up I only read 2 chapters... I was devastated because I didn't have time. Summer came along and I said I need to read his book,and I finished it in 2 days. Every time I was put at a cliff hanger; even NOW I am. I simply couldn't let my mind wait.My favorite character is Squirt! He's sooooooo cute! I now want to go into the scrub next to my house and see if I can go down to Junonia. Thunder was a strong and mighty character, and I love the way he put his life 2nd and protected Olivia's.I always had that feeling that the teacher,Miss.Rinkle, was... evil.There's so much in your book that I loved, I just can explain it all! I was astonished by all of it ; From the 1st word "There". I can't wait till you're 2nd book is published!
Hope you're summer is going well,
      Shauna
Oh p.s. I drew a picture of squirt for fun!



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Here is a review sent to me by a middle school teacher. I can't believe she took the time from her busy schedule to write to me!


What a spectacular read!!  This would be a wonderful novel for ANY middle school group ...would keep them wanting more.  Action, mystery, fantasy, nature, relationships...it moves quickly in all areas.  Just enough vocabulary for good word study, but not too much to stumble over during reading.  Plot/comprehension easy to follow, but enough twists and turns to keep the young mind wondering about the connections and outcomes. 

I love this character of Gnat and his video game voice phrases.  Adds a great sense of humor along the way in this book.

Ms. Brophie is such a strong character for young ladies today.  This would make a fantastic movie with the special effects that could be done!!!!    The sphere leaves us knowing it has more secrets to divulge.  No one is REALLY in control.  We humans just can’t be content leaving it at that….someone HAS to control the sphere and conquer it inside, on behalf of all those brave people who tried before. I loved it!!  




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For a state with the highest percentage of seniors, we sure do have a lot of children's book authors. Most intriguing one of the week: Christopher Tozier. Olivia Brophie and the Pearl of Tagelus has plenty of gumption for a debut novel, painlessly working a hefty helping of eco-science into a supernatural adventure tale set in the wilds of Florida.    ---Tod Caviness, Orlando Sentinel




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 My students were at the edge of their seats( their words), action packed, and great for kids.  They are anxious for Book two!




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A review sent to me by Zach, a young reader and a good writer himself!

Olivia Brophie and the Pearl of Tagelus is a fantastic read! It has relations to everyday people, it has a fun mini science lesson about the Florida scrub, and...some normal people. Journey along with Olivia Brophie and her friends in this wonderful fantasy! Watch as they 'fall' into an amazing adventure as Olivia learns many lessons. And as this book ends remember that Olivia the Guardian will face more challenges for you to read later

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Here is an email from a teacher:

I was talking with a mom of a student from last year and she stated writing is now her son's favorite subject. I asked her what the turning point was because he definitely did not like writing at the beginning of the year and he struggled incorporating details throughout the year. His mom said that the Skype with you and the personal feedback from you had the greatest impact on him. He took to heart everything you told him and is now incorporating that feedback into his fifth grade writing and now has such a passion for writing!