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Monday, December 8, 2014

"Tut: The Story of My Immortal Life" by P.J. Hoover (Reviewed by Cindy Hannikman)

Visit P.J. Hoover's Official Website Here

OVERVIEW: Tut: The Story of My Immortal Life is a funny, fast-paced novel for young readers by P.J. Hoover which chronicles the mischievous adventures of King Tut, now an immortal eighth-grader living in Washington, D.C..

You’d think it would be great being an Egyptian demigod, but if King Tut has to sit through eighth grade one more time, he’ll mummify himself.

Granted the gift of immortality by the gods—or is it a curse?—Tut has been stuck in middle school for ages. Even worse, evil General Horemheb, the man who killed Tut’s father and whom Tut imprisoned in a tomb for three thousand years, is out and after him. The general is in league with the Cult of Set, a bunch of guys who worship one of the scariest gods of the Egyptian pantheon—Set, the god of Chaos.

The General and the Cult of Set have plans for Tut… and if Tut doesn’t find a way to keep out of their clutches, he’ll never make it to the afterworld alive.

FORMAT: Tut: The Story of My Immortal Life is the first book in what is presumed to be a series. The story is mostly wrapped up in this novel, but there are elements that carry over into the other books.

It is a children's/YA novel that has action, adventure, and romance. It is based off of Egyptian mythology. It stands at 320 pages and was published by Starscape/Tor/Macmillan on September 16, 2014.

ANALYSIS: Percy Jackson, you have been warned. A new competitor has just entered the teen lit arena and he is sure to win over the hearts of teens and adults alike. Tut is sure to be a hit.

Tut: The Story of My Immortal Life follows the journey of King Tut. Readers are first introduced to him in Ancient Egypt. Tut's life is in jeopardy. He is running from his uncle, who is responsible for the murder of Tut's family and is now out to get Tut.

In his run in with his uncle, Tut is stabbed and about to die. In a last ditch attempt to live, he casts a spell that leads him to immortality. Unfortunately, it came with a price. Tut is doomed to spend the rest of his life as a 14 year old who must keep attending eighth grade over and over and over again.

The novel continues with Tut in present-day Washington D.C. where Tut is attending eighth grade all over again and living with his brother-like guardian Gil and Horus. Tut discovers that his uncle may not be dead (as he has found immortality too) and he is ready to get his revenge. This sparks a search for a knife that will help Tut kill his uncle.

Tut: The Story of My Immortal Life is everything that makes a great novel. It is fast paced, action packed, and is rather unique in its concept. Sure, Percy Jackson brought the well-known Gods to life, but this brings the often overlooked Egyptian gods to life.

Hoover does an amazing job of not info dumping, but incorporating the god's backstory into the novel. It might not be the most in-depth look at the Egyptian gods, but it is enough to spark people's interest which I hope will encourage them to read on their own.

One of the things I really liked was the way Hoover incorporated a parental figure into the story. When I read the blurb for this novel, I couldn't figure out how a 14 year old could just wander through life with no one questioning it. It appears it can be done when an older individual takes that 14 year old under their wing and acts like a parental figure.

Gil, the parental/brother-like figure, in the story wasn't just placed there as a wall decoration. He was developed, had emotions, and really played a role in the novel. Many times YA/children's novels tend to have adult/parental figures take a back seat, but not in this one.

Gil isn't the only character that is extremely developed. Hoover does an amazing job of quickly developing characters and making them relatable for the readers. The mortal characters were average, every day children that almost any reader could relate to instantly. Tut was likeable and funny. He was mature at times due to being alive so long, but there were times when he acted just like he was supposed to – a 14 year old boy.

A favorite part of mine was the shabtis that follow Tut around. They were responsible for helping keep the house clean, but also helped Tut out a lot with homework and other day-to-day chores. I just loved the interactions Tut had with them. It added a nice, humorous touch to the story without ruining to the tone of the book.

Overall, Hoover did an amazing job. Tut: The Story of My Immortal Life is an amazing start to a promising series. Hoover shows that it is possible to create a detailed, likeable story in approximately 300 pages. It will be interesting to see where this series is taken, what happens with the characters, and what is in store for Tut. I know I'll be waiting.


Shreya at Jumbodium said...

I read the book recently and it is actually nice and interesting. As I am a passionate reader so I like reading any kind of book and this book was also nice I would say....Thanks for the review...

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