Bookshelf Blurb: Full of fun twist and turns, mystery and mayhem, this story is an easy read for your reluctant middle schooler. Excellent mix of graphic novel and story.
At age 7, Warren the 13th loses his dad, Warren the 12th, and is left under the care of a lazy, worthless uncle living in a hotel which Warren will inherit when he turns 18. The cheerful Warren takes pride in the decrepit hotel despite the overwhelming amount of work left to him daily. Tania del Rio has brilliantly partnered the font of Warren’s story with illustrator Will Staehle’s graphic pictures throughout the book.
Middle-grade children will enjoy the black and white pictures, along with the large, colorful font as they try to decipher what the all-seeing eye does. Splashes of red periodically show up, adding another element of dark emotion to the innocence of little Warren’s life. His uncle has recently married a bossy, rude and unkind woman, who readers quickly discover is a witch. Aunt Anaconda is convinced the all-seeing eye is close, and is destroying the hotel in her quest to possess the eye. When she invites her two witch sisters to aid in her endeavor, they brag to everyone of their hunt. Much to Anaconda’s chagrin, her sisters’ braggart personalities have brought a plethora of guests (also in search of the all-seeing eye) to the hotel.
Warren and his uncle are thrilled to see the hotel at capacity, but with these visitors comes the responsibilities of hotel management. Although busy with tasks, Warren knows he must possess the eye before Aunt Anaconda, or ruin will befall the hotel.
Full of fun twists and turns, mystery and mayhem, this story is an easy read for your reluctant middle-schooler. High-level third and fourth graders will also enjoy Warren’s tale. There is a clear storyline with fun and witty characters; the setting is also cool, but also adds an element of creepy.
In the classroom:
In the beginning of our story, Warren lives in the hotel with a few characters: his uncle, his aunt, the chef and a tutor/librarian. As the story progresses, Warren has to interact with new hotel guests; one of them is a young girl his own age who befriends him. As each new character is introduced, Warren has to establish where they fit in his life. He allows them into his heart, but soon learns this is not always the best choice. Character development evolves throughout the novel, giving your students an opportunity to describe how Warren’s responses to these new characters changes the plot (CCSS 6th Reading Literacy).
Warren the 13th and The All-Seeing Eye: A Novel by Tania del Rio, illustrated by Will Staehle (Quirk Books | 9781594748035 | November 24, 2015)