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Book Review: Saving Thanehaven by Catherine Jinks

Just last week someone was asking me about books that took place with video games or the Internet and I wish I had read this book before they had asked that question because I would have said: Saving Thanehaven by Catherine Jinks.

Catherine Jinks in the author of Evil Genius, which I adore, and The Paradise Trap, which the Tween adores.  It is the story of Noble, a knight who is brave and true, though he is tired of the endless fighting.  He is accompanied by his “trusty” sword Smite.  Smite is prone to shifting at the worst possible moment and taking bites out of Noble, which is kind of an issue.  Suddenly, Rufus shows up and begins asking Noble what it is that he wants to do, suggesting that Nobel can take control of his own life.  It turns out that Noble is a part of a video game and Rufus is a virus.  Soon they are traveling from game to game and challenging everyone to simply take control of their own destiny.

Saving Thanehaven is a fantasy hero quest with some unique twists and turns and that all too important reminder that we should all start thinking for ourselves, but that doesn’t mean we should never follow the rules.  Jinks takes the inner working of the computer world and turns them inside out and upside down, quite literally.  Although all readers can appreciate this fun romp, gamers in particular will be enchanted by this unique look at their world.  And in typical Jinks fashion, there is a lot of light humor and fun twists.

Suitable for middle grade readers and up, this is a definite add to your reading collections.  A great book for Teen Tech Week.  And it goes straight to our More Than a Game list.  You can do a wide variety of programming tie ins for this book, including some of these Game On and Teen Tech Week ideas.

Saving Thanehaven by Catherine Jinks.  Published July 2013 by Egmont USA.  ISBN: 978-1-60684-274-4.


  1. Catherine Jinks and a fantasy hero quest story, sounds like a win-win to me!

  2. Always exciting stuff at TLT!

  3. I hadn't heard of this one before–it sounds good!

  4. No one has nominated this for the Cybils yet. Is sad. Would like to read it….

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