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"The Blue Umbrella"

"The Blue Umbrella" by Mike Mason 
Published by David C. Cook in 2009
425 pages of reading
To view the book trailer click on the following link:
This book was provided for me for the purpose of review by the David C. Cook B&B Media Group, Inc. 

"The Blue Umbrella" by Mike Mason is the first in a series for nine to twelve year olds.

Ten year old Zac Spark's mother was killed by lightening, and shortly afterwards he goes to live with two great aunts in the town of Five Corners. Zac's life with these two Auntie's is chilling. Zac meets Sky Porter the owner of the general store across the street from the Auntie's house. Sky is approachable and friendly, but can Zac trust him? Sky's blue umbrella is a mystery and the focal point of the story.

The people that live in the town of Five Corners are a morphed version of a cross between Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, and Cruella De vil. Each of the characters leap off of the pages in their extremity of facial expressions, demeanor, clothing--they are almost cartoonish.
The auntie's Esmeralda and Pris would fit well as guards at Auschwitz---they are evil to the maximum.
The plot and storyline is complicated, and required me to take notes to be able to keep up with all of the variety of exasperations, psyche behind the characters, and complicated settings.
To me this is a deep storyline---not a storyline that middle school age young adult readers would understand.
I also felt that some of the scenes were disturbing and they troubled me. Of course I am sensitive in nature, some young adults maybe more thick skinned than I am.
I did feel that this book was brilliantly crafted in creativity. The mind of the author is near on par with C. S. Lewis and other writers of classic fantasy novels.
The story does wrap up well and for this I was grateful, I had a sigh of relief.
I would recommend this book to an adult to read. I would be timid about referring this book to a person younger that high school age.

Blissful Reading!