Emmy Levels Up


It’s time for the release of Illusory Isles II. After Emmy’s huge success as fire elemental Emmentine, defeating the Mulch Queen in Illusory Isles 1. Her video of her success is a hot ticket!

Yet, why can’t Emmy negotiate the school room and playground with such confidence and precision? It seems she doesn’t look right, spell right or even play right for Vanessa and her gang. What’s more Vanessa’s influence is so strong that it’s extended to Lila, who used to play with Emmy. Now she’s more interested in wearing clothes of which Vanessa approves, and following Vanessa’s dance moves. The heat is growing on Emmy and she feels cornered.

In the school’s computer room, she finds a potential friend in Jude, also a keen Illusory Isles’ gamer. Yet can Emmy trust him? Then again, can she trust his games’ playing methods, his companionship? What then if he suggests forming a computer Geek Gang club at school? Is there a place for Emmy there? Could she become more Emmentine?

Emmy Levels Up is an assured middle grade novel. We feel concerned for and involved with Emmy at every stage, from her story writing to her playground anguish. She is a very real, sympathetic lead character. Furthermore Helen Harvey has created a really intelligent parallel story of Emmentine and the Mulch Queen and thereafter Emmy and Vanessa.

Bookwagon recommends Emmy Levels Up highly, to readers who appreciate human interest stories, alongside those with an interest, a penchant for gaming.

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Emmy Levels Up

Helen Harvey


When Emmentine defeats the evil Mulch Queen in Illusory Isles it is a moment of celebration and achievement! Thereafter her video is shared across games’ features until she’s a gaming star. Yet, at school, Emmy does not demonstrate such confidence and strategy. It seems as though the best friend who shared her love of gaming worlds has left her to join new girl Vanessa’s gang. What’s more they target Emmy so she does not know where to turn. It seems the only place she might find sanctuary, if not behind her computer, is with the Geek Gang, and potential friend Jude.
As Emmy Levels Up, working out where to place herself at school, taking on big brother Ryan’s advice as to how to deal with Vanessa, and then trying to adapt to what Vanessa dictates, she is faltering. Yet she shares her games’ strategies with Jude, and thereafter learns about her superpowers too. Furthermore as the Geek Gang grow and discover more about each other, their individual abilities and collective strength, it seems Emmy has somewhere to turn .Thereafter she begins to trust Jude, though there is a large obstacle upon their path…
Emmy Levels Up demonstrates such empathy and insight. We feel such sympathy for Emmy as she negotiates what she should and could do about her situation at school. Furthermore, she works to reconcile her brother’s feelings at home, too. Helen Harvey has created such a loveable, recognisable character in Emmy. We know her setting, can almost ‘smell’ her home, and hear the conversations, and feel deeply involved. Like Laura Wood’s Vote for Effie stories, or Emma Shevah’s titles such as Dara Palmer’s Major Drama, we know and feel for these characters and their situations.


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