Jera’s Jamboree review and giveaway: The Black Shard by Victoria Simcox

The Black Shard by Victoria Simcox

Format: Kindle Edition

File Size: 2330 KB

Print Length: 268 pages

Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1937293149

Publisher: Two Harbors Press (30 Sep 2011)

Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.

Language: English


Kristina’s stay at summer horse camp is horrible to say the least, and it’s all because Hester and Davina are there as well, making her life miserable. When Hester’s cruel prank goes terribly wrong, it’s actually what sends the three girls back to the magical land of Bernovem.

In Bernovem, Kristina is very excited to see her former friend, Prince Werrien. When he invites her to sail with him on his ship to his homeland Tezerel, putting it simply, Kristina can’t refuse. Reunited with her gnome, dwarf, animal, fairy friends … and best of all, Werrien, things seem like they couldn’t get any better for Kristina. But when Werrien becomes fascinated with an unusual seeing stone, the “Black Shard”, Kristina is haunted by a ghostlike old hag.

Struggling against suspicion, guilt, illness, and ultimately the one who wants to possess her soul, Kristina will see it’s in her weakest moment that she will encounter more strength than she has ever known.


The Black Shard is the second in a trilogy in a magical adventure for the YA genre that begins with The Magic Warble (you can read my review here).

Kristina is at the Tranquil Trails Horse Ranch (owned by Hester’s family) for summer camp.  Davina and Hester are also at summer camp and neither girls recall the magical world of Bernovem.  Still up to high jinx, they talk Kristina into going for a horse ride when they should be mucking out the stables and cleaning the tack.  It’s the prank that they play on the ride which leads to Kristina falling down a ravine … and being caught back in Bernovem.

Kristina bumps into Prince Werrien right away.  It’s his birthday and at the celebrations we get to meet the old characters.  I thought this was a brilliant way to re-introduce them.

Prince Werrien has found some items hidden away in the palace and he shows Kristina.  One of the items is a shard broken from the seeing stone, another is Bernovem’s Book of Prophecy (the front section is still missing and now the back session is missing too) and another the golden goblet. Kristina finds out they will be travelling by sea to Tezerel with the court.

The reader finds out where the back section of Bernovem’s Book of Prophecy is – and also intrigue from a serpent who has creatures working its will.  The first hook for me was the mosquito … what would it be injecting and who would it inject and what part did it have to play?

During the travelling the reader has quite a few adventures and we’re introduced to new characters/creatures while periodically glimpsing the serpent and what it’s up to.

In the Black Shard we find out more about the history of Bernovem.  We learn about the Rainbow Tree, the Great Spirit Yolen and how the Zelbock’s came into existence.

Kristina and Prince Werrien’s romance is stronger (now that they are two years older) and the insecurity and anxiety Kristina feels around him is a reflection of how teens are in real life.

I think there is more of the element of the spiritual with good and evil in this second book.  I enjoyed how Simcox presents this for the YA genre.

The adventures are well paced and the magical world enchanting.  The story just flows.  Once again we have drawings interspersed throughout the story.

I had quite a few surprises at the climax – which I loved!  We are left on a cliff-hanger, not knowing where or how Prince Werrien is while Kristina is starting off on a new adventure with a wizard to find Azaril (who has the front section of the book of prophecy) into the forsaken land of Jalmara.

I would love to see this trilogy made into a movie or TV series.  I think it would be amazing!

Buy it and spread the word

You can find out more about the author on her blog, like The Magic Warble Facebook page and The Black Shard Facebook page or follow Victoria on Twitter.

The Magic Warble and The Black Shard is available to purchase through the authors website or Amazon Kindle format £1.95 for The Magic Warble and £1.92 for The Black Shard.  Alternatively you can enter the giveaway!

Victoria Simcox has generously offered to giveaway to two of my readers both e-books in this trilogy.  To enter, complete one of the following (don’t forget to leave me a comment saying what you have done).

Giveaway is open Internationally and closes 3rd September midnight (BST).

Good Luck


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