The Circle is a

Winner!



Reviews for The Circle


Many thanks to reviewers, bloggers and readers who have published reviews of The Circle on their website, social media, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and everywhere!

Reviews are posted with the most recent on top. Or, scroll to the bottom of this page and click on the link to go directly to the full review. 


Amazon Review Update

Additional reviews are posted on Amazon ---- 4.6 Stars after 69 reviews!
Thanks so much, everyone!

August 23, 2016
Review submitted via this website's review form.

5 Stars
I just finished The Circle and can't wait to read The Choice. The first book had me up at 2:30 a.m. because I needed to see what was happening. I will recommend this book to all of my fantasy loving students, as well as my grandchildren!!

May 9, 2016
Interview with Pam Cable

 

 June 3, 2015
Review submitted via this website's review form.

I loved The Circle so much!! I don't think it's just for middle school children! I love books like this that take us into such a wonderful fantasy adventure!! I personally ordered 6 copies of The Circle and gave them to my young neices, nephews, god children etc. I am about to purchase the equivalent amount of copies of The Choice so that my family members and I can continue to read what lies ahead for Calum and his friends!! I cannot wait to send them off to them in TX and NM where they live!! Way to go Ms.Cipriano and who knows one day we may see this series make the big screen!! That would be awesome and well deserved!! LH

June 3, 2015
Amazon Review


5 STARS!!! This is an amazing book! It was well written and captured your attention from beginning to end. The curiosity, fantasy and magic was just absolutely phenomenal! I am so honored to have read this and have the ability to really give my opinion. Top notch writing! I'm in love with this.....I want more! Cindy - you are a very talented writer and I will keep reading your books for years to come! Thank you for giving us all (no matter what age) our imagination back!

May 14, 2015
Plethoric Thoughts
 

Not so long ago, I’ve made a book review for The Choice, the second installment of the Sidhe Series,without any significant knowledge of the first installment, The Circle. A few days ago, I was fortunate enough to be given a copy of the first book but after reading the novel, I realized that I was more than fortunate.

The Circle revolves around the life of the twelve-year-old Calum Ranson, seven years after the mysterious disappearance of his cousin, Finley. On the summer before he enters sixth grade, Laurel Werner enters his mother’s bookstore and Calum’s life bringing with her a mystery of her own that might reveal a connection to Finley. And cost Finley’s life.

I’ve known, even from reading The Choice prior to reading this book, that this series will be wonderful. And now that I’ve got my bearings to the series, I’m downright sure of it. Granted, I already know where the story was heading but that doesn’t stop the tiny details from making me excited and engaged. It was these tiny details that made me so happy in getting to read the first book.

I loved how the pace of the story was moderate–not so fast, and not too slow. Although the development of the story were, at times, going on a quite slow pace the revelations and the climax of the story rose smoothly. One great thing about reading the second book first was that the foreshadowing of the events in the first book was clearer at first read. This showed to me immediately how smooth the entire plot was set out and written.

Most of all, I especially loved the emotional struggles of Calum Ranson. Despite being different from any other kid in town, he was enduring the same kind of struggles that every kid experiences. It was that point near the end when he broke down that I felt connected to him. That I so wanted tears to fall because I was so moved by him. Because, let’s face it, at some point in our lives we have felt utterly responsible for a bad thing that happened. I know I did…a couple of times. And accepting that the world isn’t our burden to carry alone was hard.

Having read the first book now, I’m planning on rereading The Choice. Not now, really, but soon. This series is starting to see the light for me and if I have read The Circle before The Choice, I would still say the same. I’m hoping for this series to get big (even if the small hipster-ish part of me doesn’t want it to) because it has greater potential compared to the other YAs hitting the mainstream shelves nowadays. I know I’ll be following this series.

Posted on LitPick

Calum Ranson is a boy with a secret. He has magical Sidhe powers that he needs to hide. He was born on the Aessea mound, in the other world. He traveled to the Realm of man when he was little, and has been there ever since. But then, a girl named Laurel comes and changes everything. Now he realizes, that he and Laurel have to save Laurel’s brother and Calum’s own cousin from within the otherworld very soon, before they are trapped forever! Will they be able to? Hopefully with Calum’s magic and Laurel’s help they will be able to rescue them in time.


I loved The Circle. Cindy Cipriano created a different world that is so unlike, “The realm of man.” I like how the circle draws you in by giving you so many questions, and you’re just waiting for them to be answered. My favorite character in the circle was Laurel, because she was about my age, she was friendly, and she liked to read, just like me. Cindy Cipriano painted a picture in my head, and that’s what I like most about the circle. She made the book come to life. I found myself asking in real life, “Is that a faerie circle?”
 
Rating: 4
Content Rating:
Content rating - nothing offensive
April 15, 2014
Blazing Trails Through Literacy

Calum Ranson’s family is full of secrets.  Magic swirls around them, and as Calum starts to lose his abilities, he begins to worry.   When a new girl comes to town, strange things begin to happen.  Calum must decide who to trust in a battle to regain loved ones who have been lost.   

Content Notes:
No bad language or inappropriate content.

Teacher Notes:
I loved this fantasy book!  If you liked the Fablehaven books by Brandon Mull or the Spiderwick Chronicles by Tony DiTerlizzi & Holly Black you would like this book!

 Book Trailer:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CgZugrFB6OE
 

April 1, 2014
Long and Short Reviews
                                                                      

Here is an excerpt:

I really like how the author built her paranormal world. Words have power and places have meaning. It wasn’t hard to picture myself stepping through the threshold along with the characters. I’m very interested to see exactly how much power Calum’s grandfather, Uilleam, has and what was with the little girl Calum and Laurel meet on their way to the Hobayeth mound. I’m curious about the connection, if there is one, between Laurel and Calum’s cats, too. And then there’s the writing on the stacks. See? So much goes on and it all drew me in to see if this book would have its own conclusion or if it would leave me hanging. It did both. There’s closure for some parts but then also some hanging threads that set up the next book very nicely. I’m looking forward to it.

Please click here to read the entire review.



March 23, 2014
Review submitted
via this website's review form.

5 Stars
Upon the recommendation of our librarian, I read her signed copy fresh from the SC Librarians Conference before she could even get it added to the library's collection. I read the book in two days, but following the first night of reading, I read chapter one as a read aloud to my home room of 8th grade students. They loved it! I can't wait for book two and further exploits of Calum and friends from Emerald Lake and the Otherworld. Hopefully, their adventures will follow them through middle school to high school and beyond! P.S. If Siopa Leabhar really existed, I would be a daily visitor like many of Emerald Lake's residents!
March 16, 2014
Review submitted via this website's review form.

5 Stars

WOW! Finally a fantasy book that I think will satisfy parents and students alike. After having met Cindy at our SC Library Conference, I was anxious to read the book and I was not disappointed. The characters seemed so real and ones that middle schoolers can relate to so well. Calum and Laurel could be your next door neighbors (except for Calum being a Sidhe of course). I fell in love with all the characters and I definitely would want to visit the Siopa Leabhar (book store). The descriptions made me wish to be right there looking for a book and having some of Kenzie's sassafras tea. The story immediately catches you up in all of their lives and since it is set in the resort town in the NC mountains, I can relate to where I was raised. I can almost see certain characters as people I knew. The story of fairies is very appealing to everyone, especially the Harry Potter fans Being a middle school teacher and librarian makes these characters really seem real and so like your typical 6th graders. The story starts off with Calum and his problem of having his cousin disappear (Calum felt responsible) and moves to Laurel coming to town with her secret of her brother's disappearance. It then begins to weave the two lives together and intertwine them with all the parents and cousins and their lives and secrets. The other theme of the fact that Calum and his family are Sidhe's who look like humans and move back and forth between the human world and the fairy world really gets your imagination going. Then there is the fact that some are on the good side and some are on the bad side (sound like anyone we know?). I think the book will appeal to all the middle schoolers 6-8 and it will satisfy the parents who tend to shy away from a theme of magic and wizards. Fairies somehow have always been around us, even in our childhood. Cindy has done a wonderful job of having real life, fairies, suspense, and relationships all rolled into one. I personally could not put it down until I finished and I am so anxious for the next one to come out. She left you sitting on the edge wondering what will happen next!!!!! Good job, Cindy and we will be waiting to see what happens to Calum, Finley, Lauren and the rest.
February 17, 2014
Review submitted via this website's review form.

I loved reading The Circle, book 1. I couldn't put it down and didn't want it to end! I look forward to Book 2. Thanks for writing a great book on the fairy realm.

LitPick
Reviewed February 3, 2014

After Finley’s disappearance, his cousin Calum cannot stop blaming himself for what happened. Until he learns the truth.

In this action packed adventure, Calum must find Finley, make sure a girl naed Laurel doesn’t figure out who he really is and make it through his first year of middle school. Through the school year, Laurel, Calum, and Calums cousin, Hagen, become closer and closer friends, until Laurel figures out where they’re from and enlists their help to find her brother.  Over Christmas break Calum goes to the Otherworld to regain his powers and take Otherworld classes to help the friends on their quest. When things take a turn for worse, friendship is the only thing that can save them.

Opinion: I had a hard time getting into this book, but after the first few pages I couldn't put the book down. I can't think of another story quite like this one, and I can't wait for book 2 to come out. I think anyone who enjoys fantasy stories would very much like this book.


My favorite part was when Laurel saw her brother for the first time in seven years. Thank you Miss Cindy Cipriano for writing a book different than stories I've read and with characters that seem real.
December 10, 2013
Review submitted via this website's review form.

5 Stars

Very intriguing and was kept guessing what was going to happen next all the way to the end of the book! Great connections to the mystery of the faerie world and definitely want to shop for some crystals!!!! Looking forward to finding out what happens next in the sequel.
November 9, 2013
Review submitted via this website's review form.
5 Stars

I enjoyed your book very much and I am looking forward to the next in the series.
Belinda's Book Shelf
Reviewed September 29, 2013

Calum seems to be a small town all American boy, but in reality he is a half Sidhe boy who is enjoying the last few days of summer before beginning the dreaded middle school. Cindy Cipriano did a really good job of blending Calum’s two sides, the human tween angst with the Sidhe magical world in a believable way. To the point that it makes me wonder if the Sidhe could actually be real and living undetected among us.

I would definitely recommend this book to the tween through early teen aged readers, since they would be able to identify with most of Calum’s problems. Of course, I also recommend this book for the older readers who just enjoy a well written fantasy story.

September 8, 2013
Review submitted via this website's review form.

5 Stars

This book is wonderful! The characters are finely drawn in this first book, but I get the feeling we will learn so much more about these characters in later installments. Outstanding imagery--makes me want to visit Siopa Leabhar! I enjoyed seeing "Mrs. Nelson's" name on page 59! Thanks for a good read!
Mrs. Mommy Booknerd's Book Reviews and More
Reviewed August 29, 2013


Mandy's Review: Calum Ransom is trying to find his cousin Finley.  This story takes us into the world of Sidhe, faeries and magic.  Cindy does a great job of weaving this tale to keep the readers entertained and engrossed in the story.  This is a great YA book.  I really enjoyed reading this book.  I give it 4 stars.
Geo Librarian
Book Spotlight August 9, 2013


A fun middle grade story about a boy and a girl and their adventures with fairies and curses and missing people. Calum's cousin is missing and he desperately wants to find him, but he doesn't know where to start. When Laurel arrives in town determined to find her missing brother, Calum decides to help her, not realizing the possible repercussions. Cipriano creates a fun mythology surrounding fairies and the Sidhe. An enjoyable read and one I can easily recommend.
August 1, 2013
Review s
ubmitted via this website's review form.

5 Stars

My son loves this book. It is so refreshing to find a tween book told from the boy's perspective being there are so many from the girl's. He wouldn't put it down and read it in one night, he can't wait for the next one. I also read the book and found even as an adult very entertaining, well written and age appropriate. WELL DONE.
As They Grow Up
Reviewed July 30, 2013

My Thoughts:
I have read a lot of fantasy books over the years.  Young Adult fantasy books have been a favorite landing place for me because overall they seem to have better plots (because they don't rely on heavy adult situations to carry the story).  This story held me from chapter one.  I ended up staying up very late reading the whole book in one night!  It was captivating.  I needed to know what had happened to Finley and more about the clans.  There was enough mystery to have me wanting to read more.  I honestly can't wait for the rest of the series to be released!  Now this is coming from an adult - but I can tell you that grades 5+ will enjoy this book as well.  A great intriguing story will have them also  hooked after the first chapter.  If you have a tween or teen looking for something new to read I highly recommend this book!
July 20, 2013
Review submitted via this website's review form.

10 Stars

Cindy Cipriano is the next J.K. Rowling. I'm just going to go ahead and be the first to say it.
So I'm Fifty
Reviewed July 15, 2013


What I Thought: Cipriano is a gifted storyteller. She weaves a tale using actual Gaelic faery folklore. I loved learning the new words and what they meant. She created a believable world that exists within our own and was able to address real middle grade issues while leading the reader though a fantasy adventure. It started slow, telling us about the characters and setting up her world.The details were enough to keep me reading but may bog down a less skilled reader. It would be a great read aloud. Since the main character, Calum Ransom is a boy it brings an interesting perspective rarely used in fantasies about the world of the Fae. This is a great adventure and promises to be a fun series.

Pulling Down Books
Reviewed July 13, 2013

There's something I've noticed about most middle grades books involving magic. They all involve a character who is completely unversed in the world of magic being introduced to said world. Harry Potter knows nothing about magic, and so he has a sense of wonder and amazement every time he sees something as simple as using magic to open a door. It makes sense, since we are looking through the character's eyes and being introduced to magic along with him or her, but at the same time it was incredibly refreshing to read a book that features a protagonist who is already immersed in a world of magic.

Cindy Cipriano’s The Circle  is the first book in a new series about a boy who comes from a family of fae.  At the book’s opening, Calum Ranson has already had plenty of adventures, including one that caused his cousin Finley to go missing.  Calum has been in the human world for some time, forbidden from travelling back to the “Otherworld,” essentially a magical fairy land.

I won’t give away any spoilers, but most of the book centers around Calum’s desire to find his cousin, while being forced to stay in the “Realm of Man.”  He meets a new human friend (Laurel) who is more involved than he realizes, and also pulls in another cousin in his quest to save Finley.

A lot of what I liked about The Circle came from the richness of the culture and world of Calum’s people.  Cipriano has thought this all through very well, and you get the sense that she isn’t just coming up with it all on the fly.  At the same time, she also captures the essence of middle school and trying to figure out who you really are at that age.  Middle school readers will see themselves in this book, even though there are fairies and magic.

One thing that was missing, at least for me, was a pronunciation guide.  There were a lot of names that were hard to figure out, and it would have been nice to have a guide in the back to help out with that.  All the same, I suspect that most readers will decide how they want to pronounce the names, and pronounce them that way, whether it’s correct or not.  It took me years to learn the right way to pronounce Princess Eilonwy’s name from The Black Cauldron, but that didn’t take away anything from my enjoyment of that book, and it was much the same with this one.

I will warn you that the ending doesn’t really wrap things up very neatly, and in some ways presents more questions rather than answers, but I actually appreciated that.  Cipriano could have given us an easy solution, and then brought on a new problem for the second book, but instead it seems that the problem will continue into the second book instead.  Overall, I enjoyed the book and would certainly recommend it to a middle grades reader who enjoys a good Harry Potter-esque book.

Books for Kids
Reviewed July 8, 2013


This is a fun and rather unique approach to a middle grade fantasy. It is a light, quick read that I think most kids would enjoy.  The characters are likable and generally easy to relate to.

I liked the way the human world and the magical world are separate, yet entwined. The ending was nice because it wrapped up without a cliffhanger, yet it wasn't completely resolved. The unresolved parts of the story will carry us into the next book in the series.  I really hope to learn more about the Sidhe, their customs, and their verses as the series continues.

All  in all, it was a good read. Nice, clean, and full of magic and friendship. Click here for the full review.

The Maniacal Bookworm
Reviewed July 6, 2013

            So many of you are probably reading the genre I have The Circle under and are thinking, “What the heck is Contemporary Fantasy?” I shall tell you. Contemporary Fantasy (yes, it’s title a came up with on very own…well maybe not, but I think I should get some credit for using it) is a book set in modern day times with a fantasy twist to it. Like Fairies. Like the Sidhe. Like The Circle. Contemporary Fantasy is a book that more than likely sparks the clichéd sentence, ‘They live among us’. Back to my review.

               What I liked:

I liked how Ms. Cipriano wrote that fairies live among us pretending to be human. I’ll never look at another person again without thinking, “Hmmm. Fairy or no?” (You think I’m kidding but seriously, there’s this person at our church…yeah, they might be a fairy. No joke, so don’t laugh.) The characters were all amazing, and I want to take this time to say a HUGE thank you to Ms. Cipriano for putting my name in her book. That was the first book I read with a character named Brenna in there and let me tell you, I was so tickled. :) And I loved how there was a middle graders romance in there. It was so funny reading about it and oh so true to life. And although, this book is being toted as a Middle Grade novel for Middle Grade readers, I know quite a few adults and teenagers that would love to read this book. So don’t judge a book by what age level it was written for because I promise, people of all ages will love this book!

What I did not like:

The CLIFF HANGER!!! Cliff hangers are my evil enemy. Now I’m dying for Book Two!

Note to the author:

Great job on the book! I loved it! Cannot wait for book two.

Shannon's View from Here
Reviewed July 3, 2013


Book Review ~ The Circle by Cindy Cipriano
The Circle Book One of the Sidhe By: Cindy Cipriano
One of the reasons I love books in print


As of late I have been surrounding myself with people who have a love of writing. I have always known that I would one day write a novel. I have the stories in my head and I just need to get them out. When I do, I hope I am as successful as Cindy Cipriano is at telling her stories.

This is the first of a trilogy geared towards the young adult crowd. I have confidently passed this novel on to my 10 year old daughter to read.

The characters are easy to like and all seem to have a secret. The main character, Calum, has a strong tie to his family and their history. As a reader, it is refreshing to read a young adult novel with no family drama. The strength and unity that this family portrays is heartwarming. The whole family is a great cast of characters.

The Cipriano created Otherworld, a parallel world filled with all things Sidhe, is so perfectly described. The reader remembers every colorful detail and can't wait for the next visit, just like Calum, to explore and experience more.

The Circle is over all a fantastic fantasy filled read. I of course devoured this book in almost one sitting and quickly emailed Cipriano.... "When is book 2 available?" I emailed. The reply. "I am typing as fast as I can!". Keep typing Cindy and please let me know when I can continue on this adventure to the Sidhe Otherworld.

The verdict:

Well I am pretty sure you can tell by my review that I loved this book and can not wait for the rest of the series. My daughter (10) also enjoyed the book. We give this book:


June 28, 2013
The Tyler Blog


5 Stars

The Circle is a book to expect the unexpected. The things I loved is the perfect imagery, the foreshadowing, and the creativity of the names of the clans in The Otherworld. I can't wait for book Two, The Lost to see what else Cindy has in store for us. I already see an amazing future for this series.
Vacen Taylor, Author of The Starchild Series
Reviewed June 25, 2013


Firstly, I love the combination of folklore and fantasy. I didn't know anything about the Sidhe prior to reading The Circle so I've learned something new from reading this book. The opening provides a sense of mystery with Finley's disappearance. I liked the talent of mind reading all adult Sidhe possessed and how Calum was yet to develop this ability.

Secondly, I like how they work together and the whole friendship and bonding that goes on throughout the book. I also like the good friends theme very much! I'm intrigued by the "legend" of the Sidhe fairies. I think weaving in a family secret, missing cousin, and the issue of trust brings a deeper storytelling to the readers.

I think this is a fantastic start to a fabulous series. I congratulate Cindy Cipriano for producing such a wonderful debut novel. I would recommend this book to middle school grade or even older readers who like folklore, fantasy and fairies. I enjoyed it! I look forward to reading the next book in the series.

Derisive
Reviewed June 25, 2013
Originally posted on Amazon - permission of reviewer given for posting here.

I finished it in less than a day and really enjoyed reading it! Although I kind of wish I had read it slower, I may go back and read it again! I really enjoyed that not every description was fed to you in an easy paragraph like some young adult novels, sometimes you were left in the dark about some aspects of the Sidhe world and had to figure things out as you go along. I used to read a lot of similar books like this when I was younger and it was a great throwback, I'm sure kids will love it even more than I did.

Boys and Literacy
Reviewed June 23, 2013


Before Calum Ranson starts middle school, he spends a summer helping his mom in the family's bookstore, the Siopa Leabhar. When he's not working, Calum thinks about his missing cousin, Findley, and figures he will be the one to find him. 

Though the family appear normal to the outside world, they are really part of the Sidhe, a faerie clan. Nobody knows this until Laurel, a new girl in town, shows up at the bookstore wearing necklace which Calum recognizes as a symbol of the dark faerie clan, the Hobayeth. As Calum and his friends drift apart, his friendship with Laurel grows. The must learn to work together in the real world and the Otherworld to rescue her brother who disappeared seven years earlier, around the same time as Findley. Will the attempt free Findley as well or cost him his life? 

Cipriano's debut novel, The Circle, captivates the the reader with intrigue and mysterious twists. Relatable characters help to make the transition from "real world" to fantasy a smooth one.  An underlying message of the importance of family ties and friendship help round off the solid fantasy novel. Click here for the full review.
Mother/Gamer/Writer
Reviewed June 13, 2013


First of all, this was a great debut novel for Cindy Cipriano.  The first few pages were a little slow, but by the end of the first chapter I was hooked.  Cipriano introduces an amazing world of magic with the Sidhe and she keeps readers guessing as Calum tries to find out what happened to his cousin Finley.

One of the things that really intrigued me about the novel was the fact that it’s full of Irish phrases, which can be a little tricky at first but there is a pronunciation guide on the book’s website.  I always get fascinated whenever something European is involved, so this was a huge plus for me.

Something else that I found really interesting about the novel was the fact that there were different clans of Sidhe and each clan has their own token and their own verse, and I don’t think we’ve been introduced to all of the clans yet, so I am looking forward to the possibility of that in future books in the series.

The characters are fantastic, Calum is your typical 11 year old boy (aside from being a Sidhe of course) and he’s an extremely easy character to relate to.  Apart from anything magical going on in the novel, Calum is, like a lot of children, nervous about middle school.  He meets Laurel, a human girl, and is reluctant to be friends with her because she is a girl.  His best friend is hanging out with other kids, bullies, and the two are drifting apart.  It is an extremely real telling of this particular time in a kid’s life, Sidhe or otherwise.

That being said, the interactions between Calum and Laurel are really enjoyable, the awkward just getting to know someone new right before starting a new school situation is done really well.  Hagen, Calum’s cousin, is a great character as well.  He and Calum act more like brothers than they do cousins, and Hagen is just as dedicated to finding Finley as Calum is.  There are family trees in the back of the book, which come in handy and I wish I would have checked the back of the book before I read the whole book because it can be a little difficult at times to keep track of who is related to who and how they are related.

There are still some things that seem a little mysterious that I am looking forward potentially being explained in the rest of the series.  Something still seems a little suspicious with Laurel to me (you’ll understand once you read the book) and of course, the book ends on a cliff hanger leaving lots of room for the next novel.

I’m giving The Circle 5/5 game controllers.  It was a great read, something that I thoroughly enjoyed, and definitely would have enjoyed when I was younger.  Fantastic debut novel, and I can’t wait to read more.


My Rating


5 out of 5 Controllers

rate 5

This Kid Reviews Books
Reviewed June 10, 2013

HAPPY SUMMER VACATION TO ME!!! WOO! What better way to celebrate my first day of summer vacation then with a review of a great book? :D

The Circle: Book One of The Sidhe
By Cindy Cipriano
186 pages – ages 9+
Published by Odyssey Books on June 1, 2013

To the rest of the world Calum Ranson and his family looked like typical Americans living in a small town. Little did the others know Calum and his family were Sidhe fairies.  Calum blamed himself for his cousin Finley’s disappearance years before when they were visiting the fairy world. When Laurel, a new girl in town, shows up at Siopa Leabhar (Calum’s mother’s bookshop – pronounced: Shuppa Leb-har) wearing a necklace with the symbol of a notorious fairy clan – the Hobayeth clan (Calum and his family are Sidhe fairies of the Aessea clan and the Hobayeth fairies are a not so nice clan), Calum and his cousin Hagen are suspicious of why a normal human is wearing a fairy necklace. Months later, Laurel figures out that the Ranson family are actually fairies and she needs their help to find her missing brother. Calum and Hagen decide to help Laurel rescue her brother from the Hobayeth before it’s too late!

I really love mystical creatures and fairies are close to the top of the list of my favorite kinds (I admit, I kinda like Tinkerbell… ;) ), and this book has furthered my interest in them. I like the “legend” of the Sidhe fairies. It is pretty interesting. Calum is a great character. He’s kind and like a modern kid, PLUS his Mom owns a bookstore! The plot is very exciting and I think it is a unique plot for a magic story (really gets away from a “Harry Potter” theme).  The first few pages of the story were a little slow, but it soon sucked me into reading page after page. I really like all of the action in the story! I like the idea of the fairy world too. Ms. Cipriano describes it very well. I think kids 9+ would really like this book!

I give “The Circle: Book 1″       5 out of 5 bookworms!fivebooks

Through the Open Book
Reviewed June 7, 2013


My Thoughts: 

A fabulous new series full of folklore, fantasy, and friendship!  In her debut novel to The Sidhe series, Cindy Cipriano presents a wonderfully fresh depiction of Fairies and magic, as well as the prominent fears and concerns of most sixth-grade students as they enter middle school and begin to develop new bonds of friendship.  Calum appears to be a  typical sixth-grade boy convinced he's old enough to spend summer vacation without supervision.  However, his Mum thinks otherwise and Calum spends his summer vacation helping in the family bookstore.  This is where he meets newcomer, Laurel, and our story begins.  Laurel has a deep fascination with Faeries and Folklore, but is there more to this than simply a young girl's whimsical imagination?  Calum is bursting at the seams to share his family secret as well as his longing to find his missing cousin, Finley, but is Laurel the one he can trust with this?  And why isn't it ok for your new best friend to be a girl?  Filled with endearing characters and unexpected twists and turns throughout, The Circle, is sure to appeal to fans of magic and fantasy at any age.  I particularly enjoyed the folklore and its historical background, as well as the connections to Ireland.  The Circle is an amazing start to what's sure to be a very enchanting series from a wonderfully gifted storyteller.  FIVE stars!

Mission Possible - Homemaking, Homeschooling, Healthy Living also posted on NC Homeschool-ology
Reviewed June 7, 2013


I can highly recommend The Circle by Cindy Cipriano, as summer reading for 4th-8th graders who love the fantasy genre!

The Circle is the first in a new series written by North Carolina author, Cindy Cipriano. Your kids will love this book- it manages to be both magical and “down to earth” at the same time.

The lore is well-developed and well explained. Celtic touches throughout the story make the “otherworld” come to life, and make the intersection of our world and the faerie realm seem not only possible, but likely.

Young people will appreciate the magic, mystery and adventure. Parents will appreciate the way the characters handle the good and bad of being a sixth grader who has access to magic and a magical “otherworld”!

Calum acts bravely even when afraid. He puts others first and respects his friend Laurel, who is a girl. The book has strong female characters and strong family ties are depicted. The story deals well with bullying, crushes, friendship and family, while showing education as enjoyable and valuable.

The character names are unique and lovely. I enjoyed the illustrations, the story, and the “cliff hanger” ending too.

The Write Path
Reviewed June 7, 2013

My Thoughts -
I enjoyed the book, especially the tying together of the human world and the Sidhe world. It was fun to unravel the mystery of what happened to Laurel's brother, and then when it ties into Callum's own life, things got even more interesting. One of my favorite parts is when Callum gets to go to Sidhe school during break. I like the creative things the kids have to learn.

This book is also a complete story. We get the entire plot of Laurel and her brother wrapped up and over before moving on to the second book. Plus, the end leads to the natural plot line of what book 2 will be about- there is no guess work.

I do wish that the Sidhe world and its magic had been delved into more. I just crave those types of details. The story starts off in the mother's bookstore, and the first chapter is so amazing as it describes these wooden shelves and banisters with elven writing engraved in them. I was disappointed when the story never delved into the origins of the store or the reason the elven writing was there.

Another thing that hit me as odd, was that right up front you know that Callum's cousin Finley went missing. Callum thinks back on the great memories they made together. Then we have Laurel, who is upset about her missing brother. It seems like these events happened in the recent past, but halfway through the book I realized it happened 7 years ago when Callum and Laurel were 4. They were totally little, but previously the book made it feel like it had happened in the last year or so. I had to do a complete re-think.

There is a lot of potential here and I definitely want to read the second book.

Lindsay and Jane's Views and Reviews
Reviewed June 7, 2013

Reviewed by Cheyenne, aged 12

4 Stars

The story was exciting and made me want to keep reading. Just when I thought one thing would happen, it didn’t, something completely different happened instead, so I found it unpredictable. I haven’t read anything like this before and think the storyline  is unusual and I really enjoyed it.
Shaken But Not Stirred
Reviewed May 30, 2013


I’m very excited to feature my friend, Cindy Cipriano, here today. Her debut novel The Circle (published by Odyssey Books) releases June 1, 2013, and I’m extremely thrilled for her literary accomplishments.

Cindy and I are fellow members of the critique group “Triad Writers,” and her debut novel holds a personal level of attachment for me. I (and other members from our quaint critique group) have had the pleasure of reading The Circle with a fine-tooth, critique-yielding comb in which Cindy has graciously thanked us all for doing so on her acknowledgments page of the book.

Cindy is an excellent writer with an amazing eye for storytelling. In this debut novel, she draws you into her characters’ layers with effortless ease and takes you on a mystical adventure that’s sure to spark and hold your interest. 

The Circle is a Middle Grades/YA novel that’s full of intrigue, magic, and mystery. It’s great for those who like reading fantasy novels.

Please help me welcome Cindy to my blog home, and enjoy this brief insider look at a wonderful new author hitting the literary scene.

Ah, fresh fantasy!
May 28, 2013 by Elizabeth Palmieri

Originally posted on Amazon --- Permission of reviewer given for posting here.


The Circle may be for middle school students, but adults will definitely enjoy it, too. The protagonists are sixth graders on a mission to find missing family, but their parents are very involved in the narrative. I was immediately hooked on all the characters.

A lot of my interest has to do with the adults in the story. The older characters are so fascinating to me! I never knew whether to laugh at how casually such amazing circumstances were treated. Obviously, the story was filtered through the view of Calum and everything was completely normal to him, so he would mention in passing things that I was flipping out over. I want to know about Kenzie, the spunky fairy woman, and Gus, the laid-back human who takes things in stride. They make the best reverse of the supernatural romance cliché, mostly because Gus is not only okay with being married into a family of magical beings and having a son of the same race, but is still a normal human. I want to know how this happened.

But don't let this convince you that the adults were the only ones I cared about. Calum is a good kid. He's confused, as middle schoolers often are (oh, how I do not miss that age), but he's relatively smart and obedient and tries. He'll grow up well. I like that he and Laurel had parallel stories in a way that came together later, and I like their shared determination to find someone lost. Hagen is also great, and I look forward to him causing trouble down the road. I occasionally felt they were too young for all this--the hints of romance, investigating seven-year-old kidnappings, etc--but eleven-year-olds are often underestimated. I do like the kids, and I love that their full dynamic hasn't been established yet. They have so much room and potential to develop around each other, and all of it wasn't established at once in the first book.

In summary of all this, I'm really looking forward to more of the Sidhe series. I'm already spreading the word among friends who will most certainly like it, and I hope many more people discover The Circle!
BookTrailers4KidsandYA
Reviewed May 28, 2013


Calum Ranson is a young boy convinced his missing cousin Finley is still alive. Still out there somewhere just waiting to be found. He feels a strong sense of guilt believing it was his own actions that caused Finley’s disappearance.

The arrival of Laurel, a girl with secrets of her own adds to Calum's growing urgency to find Finley. When he discovers Laurel’s own brother has also disappeared the two of them begin to plot a rescue plan by visiting a place called Otherworld. It is this place that holds the key to everything.

For middle grade readers who enjoy magic, fantasy as well as a good mystery then this may be the one for you. Throw in a little jealous rivalry and even a bit of Halloween and you have the beginnings of a great new fantasy series.

Spellbindings
Reviewed May 24, 2013

I was immediately drawn into this story because of the Celtic touches and fairy lore. It's obvious Cindy has done her homework. As someone married to an Irishman and deeply entrenched in Celtic lore and language, I was greatly impressed. I also loved the story Cindy developed with touches of Magical Realism here and there as well as Fantasy elements. This is a great book for Middle Grade readers, YA or anyone who enjoys a sweet Fantasy.
Rebecca Ryals Russell
MG/YA Fantasy Author
Spiced Latte
Reviewed May 21, 2013


Overall Score: 4 Stars

This middle grade story was truly magical filled with adventure, mystery and a world that was beautiful and unique. When Calum's cousin goes missing, he needs to figure out how to find him and helping Laurel will show him the way to the solution.

The Circle by Cindy Cipriano really opened my eyes to a world that was so beautiful and simple but yet was complex and united at the same time. It was hard for me to believe at times that this world was a product of imagination and was completely made up by the author. And the characters! I absolutely adored each one of them and they were very realistic. Every conversation was true and defined which never left me confused. 


Literary Sweet
Reviewed May 21, 2013


I think anyone who enjoys magic, mystery, and adventure would love this story as much as I did. The mystery around the disappearance of Laurel’s brother drew me into the story, but as a lover of fantasy, I found the world enchanting and entertaining too.

The encyclopedia of faeries also interested me as I didn’t know about the Sidhe prior to reading The Circle. It’s always fun to learn new mythologies and histories when reading, even if it’s fiction. I also enjoyed the characters, found them relatable, and I’ve already told Rae that there’s more to the story. With six more books, I can’t wait to read more.

Rogue Mission
Reviewed May 20, 2013


I really enjoyed reading this young adult fantasy book.  The setting is a bookstore where Calum helps his mother during summer break.  It is here he meets Laurel.  The two become quick friends.

This book focuses a great deal upon relationships both friendships and family.  It portrays the families as very strongly bonded.  This is yet another reason I liked the book.  The author really gives a great feel for life among the people and their individual relationships.  This adds to the emotional impact of children mysteriously disappearing.

Calum befriends Laurel who believes in fairies.  When he finds out her brother was taken seven years ago, he suspects the dark Hobayeth clan.  Calum and Hagen's own cousin was also taken years ago.  The children suspect that both are still alive and set out on a quest to find them and bring them back.

To sum it up without giving away any spoilers, this story takes the reader on a magical, fairy infused adventure where children save the day.  It is a fun and fantastic read I could see my own kids enjoying.

JC's Book Haven
Reviewed May 18, 2013

Review Excerpt


Fairies in a Book Store and Pluto is a Fairy Planet

It doesn't get much better than that, folks. OK so this is a Middle grade book that I enjoy as a lighter read sometimes in between adult reads. I also like to find good books for my son, and this one fits the bill.

The Good
I've always enjoyed fairies or the Sidhe and this book has a different spin on them which I greatly like. I also really found the thought of children as fairies to be a new aspect that I haven't yet read in books. Mostly, I've read pretty dark stories with fairies in them and although this one had some bad fairies as well as good ones, the overall characters were good in nature.

The setting is a book store which is familiar for me as a reader and fan of books. Calum works there with his mother during the summer vacation until he goes back to school. He meets a new girl, Laurel, who happens to believe in fairies and becomes fast friends with her even though she doesn't know his secret. There are missing children and other weird things happening in the background that keep the story going.

The writing was very well done and will keep anyone entertained no matter their age. There are quite a few characters to follow, but each have their own traits and are fun to learn about in their own right. The story itself is a new one and executed well with a few nice surprises.

The Romance
Asa a middle grade book, there really is no romance to mention. Calum does get jealous of Laurel's apparent infatuation with his cousin, Hagen, but they really acted more like best friends throughout the book than a crush of any kind. They had a nice friendship all in all though and it could lead somewhere in the future.


Conclusion
This is a magical, well-thought out and executed book about children doing all they can to save the ones they love surrounded by fairies and their own rules. If you enjoy light-hearted, fun reads then I would recommend you give this one a try. I also see children very much liking this one. Click here for the full review.

Sher A Hart: Written Art
Reviewed May 17, 2013

Review Excerpt

Hi there, Paul here today. I hope all is well with you. I am excited to share my review of the middle grade book The Circle with you and since you read the blurb above, here we go.

What I liked best: I really liked everything about this story to be truthful. It was great, and as most of you know, I love a good middle grade book. If I have to pick one thing it would be Calum and Laurel's relationship. Their age is so fun and the boy/girl relationship is challenging at that age. Two great characters that have a great relationship, it's hard to go too far wrong with that.

What missed a bit: At some point, maybe halfway through the book or more I felt a little bit like I was waiting for something to happen. Not just anything, because plenty was going on, but that BIG thing you knew was coming. Shortly thereafter, it happened. So this miss is minor. 

Overall: I really liked many things about this book. I loved the Irish/Gaelic stuff (I just returned from a trip to Ireland so this was perfect!). I loved the book store, Siopa Leabhar. The name, the decor, the feeling, the books everything. I would love to hang out there myself. The author did a wonderful job of conveying sixth graders emotions, whether it was fearing your peers would think a girl is your girlfriend if you hang around them too much, or first day of school jitters. It was superb. I have to tell you that I have a habit of booking too many book reviews too close together and this was the case with The Circle and another book. I finished the other book a couple of days before The Circle and had very little time to read it and write my review. Lucky for me, I LOVED it and read it in  a few short days. It's a great book and I am more than happy to give it 5 stars! Click here for the full review.

All Fantasy Worlds
Reviewed May 17, 2013

I don’t know why, but I’ve always been fascinated by the myth of fairies that kidnap human children and leave one of their own in their place. Even though in The Circle the myth is used somewhat differently, I was just as enthusiastic about the story and I couldn’t wait to learn what actually happened to the children who had been taken away from their families. There were many things I loved about this book.


First of all, I really liked the characters and the peaceful family atmosphere the author created. Calum and Hagen have always felt guilty about their cousin’s disappearance. Laurel, their best friend, lost her brother almost seven years ago, but she is sure that he is still alive. When she finds out that Calum and Hagen are actually Sidhe, she knows that her brother must have been kidnapped by one of their kind and they are the only ones who can help her get him back. These children are amazing together. They are bound by a strong friendship, trust, and the desire to save their loved ones. I have to admit that my favorite was Hagen, not Calum, who is the main character. I thought Hagen and his father, Donnelly, were the most complex and interesting characters, maybe because, unlike the other Sidhe, they also had something dark in their blood, given the fact that they belonged to the Hobayeth, the darkest of the Sidhe clans.

The family atmosphere is one of the things that make you wish you lived in Cindy Cipriano’s fantasy world. I think any child would love to spend a peaceful evening with the Ransons, drinking Kenzie’s special tea, listening to Gus’ jokes, and talking with Calum, Hagen and Laurel about magic, fairy verses and the Otherworld.

My only complaint is that sometimes the action is a bit rushed. When Calum and Laurel reach the Fairy Stone mound, they find Laurel’s brother and Calum’s cousin too easily.  I was expecting for this part to have more adventure and difficult situations the children had so find solutions to. But, other than that, The Circle was a very enjoyable read, and after reading the first chapter in the second book of The Sidhe series, The Lost, I must say I can hardly wait for the children’s next adventures.


The Daily Harrell
Reviewed May 17, 2013
Review Excerpt


This book is difficult for me to review because I realized, as I read it, that middle grade just isn't my style. I like romance and more adult situations too much, so it is hard for me to be entertained by a MG read. But let me tell you why, if you or your child enjoys MG, you might like this story:

* It's fresh in that typical paranormal stories feature a fae (or other) character who is afraid of people and what will happen if people find out his secret. In this story, the threat to Calum comes from the fae themselves. People are good guys in this story and I liked that.

* The world building is imaginative and cool. There are necklaces that can get you into the Otherworld, Gaelic writing on bookshelves that's really spells, and kids who can call their parents by their first names because good fae are made more powerful when their names are used. Who wouldn't have loved that excuse as a kid? Plus, Calum gets to travel to another world, learn about different fae cultures, and see and practice magic. It's not as magic-driven has Harry Potter, but it's still pretty cool.

* The characters are in very real places in their MG lives. Calum loses a good friend who suddenly thinks he's too cool for him after hanging around with an older kid. Calum, who is just entering middle school, is embarrassed to have a girl (Laurel) for a friend, even if she is awesome. And he will so NOT admit that he's jealous that she stares at his cousin all of the time.

* I also liked how the lives of Calum and Laurel, who hadn't known each other before the story begins, have such parallel lives without knowing it. And by helping Laurel with her problem, Calum ends up solving part of the mystery that had been plaguing him. The themes of friendship and helping others are strong in this book without being in your face.

All in all, this was a delightful little MG book and I want to thank the author and publisher for providing me with an advance reader copy in exchange for my honest review.  Click here for the full review.

Fire and Ice
Reviewed May 16, 2013

If you love Fairy myths you are going to love The Circle. I really did enjoy this read and for the most part it kept my attention for the whole of the read. There were a few points where to me it slowed down a little bit or seemed a little bit muddled. That aside over all it is a good book and one that you can get into.

Calum by far to me was the most intriguing of the characters and the one that I wanted to spend the most time with. However the whole cast of characters brings you into the world and holds you there like a captive in the best of ways. If you enjoy a good story and fairies. I think you really will enjoy The Circle.

My Gemstone Rating:

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A Book Lover's Library
Reviewed May 16, 2013


A young boy discovers a new friend during the summer before sixth grade and a key to a family mystery. Could the girl be tied to his missing cousin? Why does she know things about his people that no human should? There are too many questions for one boy to answer alone.

This was a very enjoyable read. The story moved along at a relatively fast pace with a plot that had many layers. You start out thinking that the story is about a boy in school, then his missing cousin, then the strange stone, then ... so many other incidents that don't add up until you get to the end.

The characters are well-done. They are complex as they deal with their own feelings, peer pressure, and family expectations. These are sixth graders mostly, and they have complicated lives just like adults. The author goes into all that. Sadly, I had too many memories of my sixth grade pop back up as she described their lives in school and the interactions with their classmates.

This is a paranormal story as the boy and his family are fairies and have magical abilities. They live in the human world but can travel to their own world whenever they like. The problem is that not all fairies get along.

I read this book in one sitting. Usually for this age group I don't get that involved, but this one had me wondering about the new girl, the stone, the many weird events. They kept coming at me at a steady and interesting pace. I just had to get to the end where I was very upset. I immediately wanted the next book. (This is payback for my own endings, I think.) All I can do is beg the author to get it released. I want to put it on my to-read list. :)

Writer's Alley: Middle Grades Madness
Reviewed May 16, 2013

NIGHTSTAND WORTHY +1

 A heartening tale that will sweep young readers into the adventurous world of the Sidhe and the importance of family.

The story opens with a poem, setting up the story perfectly and giving a 'feel' of mischievous play. There is something elfish or fairy-like about it. 

Middle grade voices abound through distinct characters. Calum has the typical MG response to a girl of shyness yet intrigue. He's mature enough to face it head on, though. The friends Cipriano has created for Calum support his personality--both challenging and comforting him--as well as his mortal and otherlyworld. What is absolutely atypically about this story is the names. If you know anything about me then you know I'm a major name buff. Using unusual character names adds flavor and color to the world and mounds of the Sidhe; I found that so Harry Potter-like. Ingenious connections between the Otherworld and the Realm of Man are plausible.

Another aspect that caught my attention was the sweet, caring relationship Calum has with his mom. It builds trust and a strong foundation with the reader. His father is also involved, which is a nice change from a lot of books I've read lately. The family is fully intact; no absent parents here.

Young readers will enjoy piecing the scattered crumbs of mystery Cipriano strategically places throughout the story. As mystery one crumb builds on the next, posing questions as to where and from who Laurel--Calum's new friend--got the stone she wears, the reader is challenged to think and evaluate what he/she has already read. But then a strange reaction from Laurel to old friend/cousin Hagen suddenly turns the story awkward and very normal. When this happens, Calum senses something odd, but doesn't know what it is other than it seems he's crushing on Laurel. As you might have guessed ... well, you'll have to read the story to discover that.

Bookmarks, Spoilers and Happily Ever After
Reviewed May 16, 2013


Fairy tales are awesome.

Just thought I'd throw that out there before I tell you about this book and why I liked it. The Circle is more traditional lore than deviating to create it's own, but that doesn't mean it lacks twist and turns that will take you by surprise. The lore combined with all the tragedy, action and intensity make this book truly enjoyable.

There are so many characters that sometimes it's a little overwhelming to keep everyone's story straight. However, the three main characters Calum, Lauren and Hagen all have personalities that keep the story moving at a good pace, so you never have a chance to get stuck anywhere. Add to their personalities all the determination and spunk, you get the character depth you come to expect from extraordinary heroes and heroines.  These characters don't lack ANYTHING, even though they've gone through some horrible things, and it seems they will have some obstacles in the future.

At times this story does feel a little young, but it is a middle grade story so in the end I felt like any age group could love this book, just at certain points you can tell it was aimed at someone much younger than I am. (stop laughing at me, I know I'm getting old) However, this does not detract from it, AT ALL. On the polar opposite side, there are times that the characters seem to act much older than they are, but it isn't a flaw. In fact, if I had to take a guess this is probably done on purpose. These kids have been through so much, they grew too fast. With experience comes maturity and that is definitely what these kids have.

I really enjoyed this book and would encourage anyone to read and share it with their kids too! There a lot of questions to be answered yet in this world, but that's what a series is for so I can't wait to read more from The Sidhe series!- My Opinion- Buy!


A TiffyFit's Reading Corner
Reviewed May 15, 2013

I really enjoyed this YA/middle grade fantasy. Had I read it in middle school, it would have been one of my favorite books, much like Robin McKinley's "Beauty." Subtle magic, introduction of a different culture (the Sidhe), two missing boys, steadfast and growing friendship between a small group of sixth graders, but also learning that friendships do not remain the same as Calum quickly learns. Despite being from a Sidhe clan, Calum is dealing with the every day issues that middle school-aged kids go through. "No one can have a best friend that is an opposite sex anymore! That's weird!" Your good friend just dumped you for a total douchebag. Does she like my friend? Does she like me? Am I okay with that? It was very real, and very sweet. Friendship, the unending bonds of good friends, is a main theme here. 

I am not a fan of cliffhangers and having to wait for the next book to discover what happens next, etc. That would be the only fault I find in this book. I hate cliffhangers! LOL There IS a nice little preview of the first chapter of the next book, The Lost, however, that picks up a MOMENT after this book ends, so I am very much looking forward to it!

I liked the closeness of family, even when Calum is doubting his uncle and then regretting doubting him. The dynamics of the family and what it is to be a pre-teen are really well-described. I didn't really understand that Kenzie's concern for Calum, keeping him away from his heritage, stemmed from the disappearance of his cousin, Riley. I thought there was more to it based on her actions and overheard snippets of conversation, but it's truly just a mother's love. The glimpses of the different clans of Faerie were interesting; the new rules put into place thanks to Finley's disappearance and the slightest hint that Calum and his family are indeed royalty. I also liked the introduction of other fae, notably Brownshire, a brownie, who is NOT nice at all.

I would recommend this book to anyone who has children in the middle school grades (5th -8th) who love to read fantasy, as a book to read to younger children, and as something to enjoy yourself! I cannot wait to read more in this series myself, to see how everything works out, what complications there are, if they find their powers and learn to use them more, etc. I like the teamwork aspect instead of a lone hero and I hope this continues with future books.


Tressa's Wishful Endings
Reviewed May 15, 2013


This was a fun and quick read, perfect for middle graders. I liked Kenzie's shop and the little quaint town. I also liked Calum, Laurel, and Hagen. The story wasn't completely predictable. There is a little bit of a shock towards the end of the book and I give kudos to the author for not making things simple and all nicely wrapped up. Obviously this is the first book in a series.
 
I do wish the story and characters would have been developed even more, but I'm sure more of that will happen in the following books.
 
If you're looking for a clean fantasy adventure for your middle-grader then pick this up!

Mythical Books
May 14, 2013


He’d known there was something special about Laurel since the day she reached for the faerie book. Like it held the answer to some riddle. He’d known because he’d recognized the look of someone searching desperately for something lost.

If I, who I left behind long time ago the middle grade phase, I liked the book, surely many will love it, and the middle grades ones will certainly have a new series to dream of.

We are accustomed with the feelings and clashes of the 16-17 years old characters that must cope with their special living conditions. But we rarely find how their lives were so far, about the way they got to get used to these particularities. And if they should just get used to these gifts would have been very easy, but they must learn to control and hide them. The disclosure would have major effects not only on them but on those who would get knowledge of.

“We’ve been watching her for weeks. She seems to be nothing more than a normal girl,” said Kenzie.

“Well, don’t get too attached to her,” said Donnelly. “If she’s somehow figured out about us, or even our world, our next step won’t be a pleasant one.”

Calum glared at Donnelly, and felt a shiver down his spine when he saw the look in his uncle’s eyes.

But do not you think that the 10-12 years old characters are not able to support an engaging action.

Their story will catch you and you will want more and more. How is it to feel guilty about the disappearance (possibly death) of your cousin? How is it to want to do anything and everything possible to find out what happened to him and everyone to stop you because they don’t want you to become a victim also?

The adventures are based on curiosity, innocence and audacity of the three main characters: Calum, Lauren and Hagen. Bond by the suffered loss and their willingness to do anything to trace the lost ones, their destinies seem to be predestined to intertwine before they even meet.

There is suspense, there are dangers, assumed risks and unexpected failures. The fortuitous and human nature bitch up things and everything seems to be lost again and forever.

I liked how the author created the fairy world and how describe their lives infiltrate amidst humans. Folkloric elements are used harmoniously in relation to scientific truths.

“I’m talking about Pluto,” said Twicely, pointing to the small planet on one of the charts.

“Oh, yeah,” said Hagen. “The duine daonna don’t get it because they can’t stop arguing about whether or not Pluto is a planet. They don’t understand it belongs to an entirely different universe, our universe.

They are here get a new nuance that is as attractive as it is dangerous. Dangerous because, as we well know, there is not only the light but also the dark. And those who chosen the dark side have their own plans to fulfill.

“I think a tornado with no wind, no hail, and no damage is no tornado. You were right, Kenzie. I can feel it. Dark Sidhe have come to Emerald Lake.”

The aspects of the ordinary life and Sidhe life, the first steps to see a girl with "new eyes", the first shivers of jealousy and curiosity about all these feelings are naturally interwoven with the Sindhe characteristics and the action itself. They give flavor to the story and outline the characters.

Not really angry, but what? Jealous. Calum was jealous of Hagen. The revelation took Calum by surprise. He hadn’t thought of Laurel as anything more than a good friend, so why should it bother him if she liked Hagen? It shouldn’t. But it did.

Aspects of the development of individual characters (main or secondary), the changes that people are suffering and character shaping are delicate and well placed. They are not only life lessons (perfectly valid at any age), but also sets the stage for what may follow. The most important lesson may be is that of the existence of free will: you are what you choose to be, not what is your destiny.

I recommend it and look forward to the next volume.
Geo Librarian
Reviewed May 14, 2013

A fun middle grade story about a boy and a girl and their adventures with fairies and curses and missing people. Calum's cousin is missing and he desperately wants to find him, but he doesn't know where to start.  When Laurel arrives in town determined to find her missing brother, Calum decides to help her, not realizing the possible repercussions.  Cipriano creates a fun mythology surrounding fairies and the Sidhe. An enjoyable read and one I can easily recommend.

Word to Dreams  Marni Jarman
Reviewed May 14, 2013




There are many books out there about fairies, magic and such, but few that actually tie the traditional folklore with a story so well.  From the very first page to the last period, the story pulled me in and held my interest.  A middle school read that didn’t feel juvenile nor underdeveloped.

The story has numerous different characters in it, but the author weaves everything so well that you don’t get confused on who’s who.  A mixture of different elements of the fairy world keep the reader riveted to the page and never bored.  There is mystery, loss, discovery and hope all wrapped up together.  Secrets galore, with not all revealed in this, the first book of The Sidhe.

As I stated, this book is geared more for the middle school reader, and the main characters themselves are going through 6th grade.  This is where I have a small issue.  They don’t act like typical 6th graders and I’m not talking about just the main characters.  I could see them as high school freshman, but not starting off in middle school.  They are all a bit too grown up for middle school, yes, they’ve all been through more than their peers, but not that much more.  

Another nice thing about this book is the lack of romance.  You have the mother/father figures, but other than that you don’t have your main characters all gushy over each other.   A breathe of fresh air because lately it seems that everyone has to throw some kind of romance into their story, even if it could do well without.  Having had numerous friends throughout my life, of the opposite sex, I know that you can be friends without romantic involvement and more young adults need to know that.

I recommend this book to anyone who likes a good story involving fairies, the otherworld, magic, etc.  It’s a fun read and I look forward to the next book in the series.  I’m very interested to see how a certain “loss” is “found.”  Thank you to the author, Cindy Cipriano, for providing me a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.  I can also honestly tell you that I will be reading further into The Sidhe Series.   I also suggest checking out the website for this series for more info, deleted scenes and even Sidhe recipes!  www.TheSidheSeries.com

Word to Dreams can be found at http://wordtodreams.blogspot.com

Bookworm Lisa
Reviewed May 14, 2013


I enjoyed reading "The Circle". It deals with middle grade students who are dealing with fairy mischief or mayhem. Two of the boys are fairies whose cousin disappeared and the third child is a girl whose brother was taken by fairies. The children learn to work together and to trust the adults in their lives.

The book is written in a language that is just right for the middle grade reader. Cindy Cipriano uses enough description to interest, but not too much to confuse the younger reader. The book trots at a fairly quick pace.

I liked that the kids were able to reconcile their differences and come to a common understanding. The adults are in the background but provide a great supporting role for the children. They teach and are there to help when needed.

I think that kids will enjoy this book.

Recent Reads
Reviewed May 13, 2013


This Book is FABULOUS for the Middle Graders!  I have to say that the world creation is absolutely perfect for the story.  I love how the Author used Fae.  And I loved how the threat isn't like most paranormal stories where the "creature" worries that humans will discover they are different.  Although that is an aspect of course it isn't the main threat, and I felt that was perfect in a paranormal story.

The Characters in this story are extremely well defined, and very realistic.  Cindy Cipriano used such normal every day things in this story.  Things that tweens deal with on an every day occurrence.  Such as when Calum's best friend suddenly thinks he is too cool to be friends with Calum.  The normal boy versus girl issue is here as well, where it just isn't cool for a boy to be friends with a girl.  Such normal things that most kids will deal with and the author made it easy to see not only those issues, but how Calum dealt with them.

I give this book 5 stars and must applaud the author for world creation.  The world she created is both normal and extraordinary. A world filled with magic and mystery.  A world where Faeries do exist but are unlike anything you have ever imagined before.  A world which will suck you in and leave you craving more.  This is a wonderful addition to any Middle Grade Library.  And since it is a series I truly believe it will keep the kids reading.
These links will take you to full reviews of The Circle.
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