Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Review: The Guttersnipes by Scott Eric Barrett

About the Book

Published on September 29, 2016 by Pegasus Elliott Mackenzie Publishers

I received a copy of this novel in exchange for my honest and unbiased review.

GoodReads Description

Charlie Daniels is more than six feet tall, allergic to almost everything, and has a pet dinosaur at home. His life in Arizona is relatively normal. That is, apart from the nightmares Charlie has...

But when his dinosaur, Trike, gets kidnapped by a strange old lady and her cat-like sidekick, Charlie and his misfit friend Arty are sucked into a story bigger than both of them. Risking everything to rescue Trike, Charlie and Arty are flung into the past, landing in the chaos of New York City, 1865.

Dodging the mysterious Nasten Cobblestine, and avoiding the perils of New York's nastiest street cleaners' strikes, test Charlie's wits as well as his courage. All he wants to do is reunite with his dinosaur and somehow find a way back home...

As Charlie searches for Trike, he draws dangerously close to P.T. Barnum's eerie museum and the creature that lies within. Will he find Trike and get home alive? And who is the Ice Lady of his nightmares?

My Thoughts

This book is truly difficult to review.  There were so many things that I liked!  However, there were also several things that I truly despised.  In the interest of being honest, let's talk about the positive and negative aspects separately.

What I Liked

  • Charlie and Arty are both very well-developed characters.  Barrett's ability to create and maintain such strong characters was a true delight!
  • Zip.  He was AMAZING! He reminded me SOOOOOOOOO much of Soap from Gail Carriger's Finishing School series.  I loved how loyal he was to those who were loyal to him, despite the situations that may put him in.  Even though there was a wide variety of supporting characters, the story would not have been complete without Zip.

What I Didn't Like As Much

  • There was so much introduced that nothing was really concluded.  What IS Mrs. Nedivah?  Who is the Ice Lady?  Why does she matter?  What was Saladin trying to fix?  
  • I never figured out who the true bad guy was.  Was there one?  OR was this a metaphor for life when each different situation has it's own protagonist and antagonist?  I wish it would have been a little more clear.


I enjoyed how fast-paced this book was.  I think that middle school readers would truly enjoy it.

My Rating

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