A Conspiracy of Kings by Megan Whalen Turner Green Willow Books/HarperCollins Countdown by Deborah Wiles Scholastic Press Judged by Dana Reinhardt
I should begin with the admission that this was never really a fair fight. When these books arrived in my mailbox, despite the old adage about how one should never do so, I confess that I judged them by their covers. One was clearly right up my alley. The other, not so much. But I swore to keep an open mind, and a blind eye to my predispositions, as I started to read.
Anybody who pays attention to such things can’t help but have heard wonderful things about both A Conspiracy of Kings and Countdown, so I was thrilled to have the occasion and purpose to dive right in.
Now I will tell you what happened when I did.
If this were a novel instead of an essay, I’d insert the surprise twist here. I’d tell you that the book I thought I’d favor turned out to engage me less than the one I thought I’d have a hard time settling into.
I’d give the win to the underdog.
But that isn’t what happened. What happened was precisely what I thought would happen when I first opened my mailbox. The most likely to succeed did indeed succeed.
Since you probably don’t anything about the kind of reader I am and what sorts of books I gravitate toward, I’ll end the suspense here and tell you that …