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Professor Atlas and the Summoning Dagger [Paperback]

Paul Maguire
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Book Description

July 1 2011
In 1342, an old wizard stands atop a pile of rubble that was once a bustling village, complete with happy citizens, a vibrant marketplace, and a mighty castle. Cursing the conflict that brought this civilization to an untimely end, the old wizard bestows his last bit of magic on a spectacular dagger. He buries the dagger deep within the earth, praying that one day it will be found by somebody brave enough, and smart enough, to save the village from ruin.

Centuries later, Tyler Gerard and his best friend Brandon Giles enter a contest, the prize for which is the opportunity to join legendary explorer Professor Fielding Atlas on his quest to ind the Summoning Dagger of Mercastus. Although both boys have the full and active imaginations that are typical of seventh graders, nothing will prepare them for the incredible adventure that lies ahead...

PAUL MAGUIRE lives with his wife and two sons in New York City, a place he has called home since 1990. After working on the New York Stock Exchange for more than two decades, he decided to shift gears dramatically and pursue his lifelong dream of writing. Professor Atlas and the Summoning Dagger is Maguire's first effort in this new endeavor, and he hopes to continue telling the tales of Professor Atlas's adventures in many future installments.

Maguire wishes to give thanks to his family for the many ways they have helped him during this effort. To Coleen, who offered a great deal of support and encouragement, and to Andy and Finn, who provided the ideas and the inspiration which truly brought Professor Atlas to life. Maguire also thanks his father, Jim, who taught him how to tell a story, and his mother, Diane, who taught him almost everything else.

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5.0 out of 5 stars Professor Atlas and the Summoning Dagger Oct. 24 2011
By Tami Brady HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Tyler and Brandon are the best of friends who win a contest to spend time with their hero Professor Atlas. These seventh graders find out that they will be traveling to Britain to help Professor Atlas with his latest adventure. Upon meeting Professor Atlas, the boys learn that they will be helping the Professor find the lost Summoning Dagger of Mercastus. It is said that the dagger had been lost after Hallswich Castle had been destroyed. A prophecy handed down from generation to generation stated that the dagger waited to find its rightful owner.

In true adventurer form, Professor Atlas, Tyler, and Brandon immediately find themselves in hot water. Evidentially, they aren't the only ones looking for the dagger. Professor Atlas` old rival Blackjack hijacks them demanding to know the location of Hallswich Castle. Although they manage to escape, it won't be their last run in with Blackjack.

Professor Atlas and the Summoning Dagger is quite the adventure. Not only do the boys find their lives in danger several times but they also travel to the past to actually meet Mercastus. Loved this story completely and can't wait for more adventures from this trio.
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Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  11 reviews
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Villains, Time Travel, A Dagger, A Castle, Ingredients for a Great Read Sept. 16 2011
By Beverly Stowe McClure - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Have you ever thought how an event that occurred hundreds of years in the past might affect your present and even your future? Have you ever had the opportunity to spend the summer with your hero whose life was one adventure after another as he traveled all over the world? What if winning a simple contest would grant you the chance to learn more about your hero? Sounds easy enough, huh?

In author Paul Maguire's debut novel, PROFESSOR ATLAS AND THE SUMMONING DAGGER, almost eighth-grader Tyler Gerard and his best friend, Brandon Giles, are about to find out answers to the above questions. The contest should be a cinch, right? The boys know just about everything there is to know about Professor Fielding Atlas. The professor will select two winners to accompany him to England where he'll be studying a site where a medieval castle once stood. Well, the test is not exactly what the boys were expecting, but they put their ingenuity to work to solve each question presented to them. I'm not going to spoil the fun for you, but they do win and soon find themselves in London. Villains, time travel, a dagger, a castle, threats of being beheaded, you name it. Mr. Maguire's novel covers just about everything. The boys and Professor Atlas get out of one mess only to find themselves in another. If it's possible to change history, Tyler, Brandon, and the professor are the guys that can do it.

The author has written a story with plenty of action and adventure to keep you reading on into the late hours of the night. I think you'll find yourself rooting for the boys as they encounter a host of unusual characters and obstacles, but deal with them many times like typical teen boys would do. I believe we'll be seeing more of Professor Atlas, Tyler, and Brandon in future stories. This is a fine debut novel. I'm looking forward to more from this author. I think you will be too once you've read PROFESSOR ATLAS AND THE SUMMONING DAGGER.

Paperback copy courtesy of the author and Dog Ear Publishing.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Book! Sept. 30 2011
By Dad of Divas - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This is the type of book that keeps having you come back for more. The story draws you in and has you using you imagination from beginning to end. There is a ton of adventure and action for all, but beyond that there is strong writing as well as characters that lead you to believe that this could definitely be the start to many additional books in a series.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exactly the Right Balance Jan. 11 2013
By Pop Bop - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
If you've read the book description above you know that Tyler Gerard and his best friend Brandon Giles enter and win a contest to accompany Professor Fielding Atlas on an adventure/quest that will involve time travel, villains, castles, magic and the famed Summoning Dagger. What you should also know is that this book is easily the best and most accomplished middle grade adventure/quest book that I've read in a long time. Here's why.

First and foremost, the characters are fundamentally sound. There are no funny quirks, or odd psychic powers, or strange abilities, or supposedly hilarious "tics" or habits. There are no tween drama queen companions. That kind of character creation looks good on an outline, but it can be awfully wearing during the course of an entire book or series. The same is true of plotting that is overly frantic, or that just veers into complete silliness. Here, Tyler and Brandon are smart, decent, reliable and loyal kids, having an adventure overseen by the knowledgeable and resourceful Professor Atlas. A reader can identify with and root for these heroes without distraction.

That said, the story is told with good humor and a light touch. There are breaks between the action, and engaging exchanges among the characters. The idea here is to have excitement and fun; this is not an unrelievedly brutal dystopian tale. Heck, this is a book where the two heroes are supposed to be good friends and they actually act like and feel like they truly are friends. (If the only aim of this book was to set out how two best friends should behave toward each other, it would be worthwhile right there.)

Apart from strong characters and a compelling plot, this book is also marked by writing of a high quality. By that I mean that it is both well constructed, and that it reflects a very nice command of language, description, observation, and dialogue. Scenes are well described; exchanges among characters feel authentic; mood and settings are well established. The tale is efficiently told - it isn't hurried, but it also isn't bogged down by a lot of extraneous matter. The tone is consistent - the book doesn't veer between writing for adults and writing for chapter book readers.

So, if you want a well written middle grade adventure tale with a lot going for it and a lot of appealing aspects, then this book is certainly worth considering. (By the way, the Amazon sample is huge, so you can get a really good idea of the book by reviewing it.)

Please note that I received a free advance ecopy of this book in exchange for a candid review. Apart from that I have no connection at all to the author or the publisher of this book.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a great read Dec 5 2011
By fender - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Paul Maguire's writing style draws you into to this young adventure through time. Drawing on inspiration from modern & old classic adventures Paul weaves an intriguing book that is easy & enjoyable to read. Highly recommended!
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book! Aug. 20 2011
By glenn eckert - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Professor Atlas takes the reader on a wonderful ride through imagination and adventure! My sons and I loved it. It compares well to Harry Potter, Indiana Jones, and Narnia!
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