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5+ stars for Barris and the Prince of Rappa by @brandt_ricca #kidlit #fantasy #adventure #bookreview

Title: Barris and the Prince of Rappa

Author: Brandt Ricca, Matt Miller (Illustrator)

Genre: Children's Fantasy

Book Blurb:

It’s September 1952 in New Orleans, Louisiana and Barris Hart and his three sisters have just moved from Washington D.C. to support their mother’s ambitions. While Barris navigates his new life, he becomes paranoid when the new neighbors, the Longthistles, move in across the street.

One night after dinner where Barris expresses his feelings towards the new residents on his street, he gets carried away into his dream universe, which is made up of different worlds. While there he encounters characters and magic. His guide, Gracie, who helms from a long line of Keepers, helps him navigate his dream world of Rappa. Soon they find themselves in strange circumstances, all caused by the Prince of Rappa and Grelda, the dream universe witch. Before leaving Rappa, Barris realizes he and the Longthistles have more in common with the dream world than he thinks.

My Review:

A young boy is carried away to a dream universe where he must find the Prince of Rappa and restore the dream universe before it’s too late. Having just moved to New Orleans with his family to satisfy his mother’s yearning for all things French, Barris adjusts to a new neighborhood, new school, and meeting new friends. When a new family named Longthistle moves in next door, Barris is unsure of them. There’s a girl about his age and his mother suggests Barris befriend her. He balks at the idea, citing her strange tallness and long arms. When he goes to bed that night, he enters the dream universe and meets Gracie, his guide. A calamity has occurred in Rappa and she needs his help to put it right. As they travel the dream world, Barris learns a lot he can use in real life. Can they find where the prince and the witch have gone and restore the world of Rappa so Barris can return to his family?

Barris and the Prince of Rappa is a delightful fantasy adventure for children from start to finish. As I started reading, I found myself being drawn into the story and universe of Barris. There’s a whimsical quality to the writing, reminiscent of children’s fantasy authors like Dahl, L’Engle, Lewis, and more. I connected with Barris right away. His French-speaking mother adds a comedic flair without being over the top. The descriptive narration is intricate and allows the reader to become part of the story. The author inserts interesting facts kids will find fascinating. The plot moves at a nice easy pace with plenty of adventure to please any child. The illustrations are beautiful and in full color. When I finished, I wanted the adventure to continue. I look forward to reading the next adventure of Barris. If you’re looking for a children’s fantasy book to dive into, pick up Barris and the Prince of Rappa. If your child loves fantasy, you’ll want them to read this book. While this is a children’s book, I found this highly enjoyable so I think most fantasy readers will love this book. Highly recommend!

My Rating: 5+ stars

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Author Biography:

Brandt Ricca is a D.C.-based entrepreneur. Having a writing background and a family history of owning a newspaper, telling stories has always been at the forefront of Brandt's mindset. Creating a narrative is a must for Brandt, who always wants to convey a message with events or imagery through his branding agency, Nora Lee by Brandt Ricca. Brandt was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and loves the Southern culture and creative atmosphere of New Orleans, which inspired the setting for the life of Barris Hart.

Matt Miller is a D.C.-based designer and artist. Matt began drawing houses and designing floor plans at a young age, bringing his passion for interior design and architecture to life. After graduating from Virginia Commonwealth University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Interior Design, he worked for two distinguished interior design firms in Washington, D.C., and in Tampa, Florida. After over eight years of working as a lead designer and project manager on multiple residential and commercial interior design projects, Matt realized that designers rarely had time to focus on much-needed renderings for presentations and announcements. Thus, in 2018, Perspective by Matt Miller was founded as an art studio with a focus on renderings with a hand-drawn look for interior designers and architects.

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Reviewed by: Mrs. N


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