Monday, 22 May 2017

Kitty Hawk and the Curse of the Yukon Gold [Book Review]

Hello everyone!

Title: Kitty Hawk and the Curse of the Yukon Gold (Kitty Hawk Detective Agency #1)
Author: Iain Reading
Publisher: Self-published
Published Date: 30th November 2012
Rating: 3 Stars

*Thanks to the publisher for the review copy*


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Synopsis: Kitty Hawk and the Curse of the Yukon Gold is the thrilling first installment in a new series of adventure mystery stories that are one part travel, one part history and five parts adventure. This first book of the Kitty Hawk Flying Detective Agency Series introduces Kitty Hawk, an intrepid teenage pilot with her own De Havilland Beaver seaplane and a nose for mystery and intrigue. A cross between Amelia Earhart, Nancy Drew and Pippi Longstocking, Kitty is a quirky young heroine with boundless curiosity and a knack for getting herself into all kinds of precarious situations.

After leaving her home in the western Canadian fishing village of Tofino to spend the summer in Alaska studying humpback whales Kitty finds herself caught up in an unforgettable adventure involving stolen gold, devious criminals, ghostly shipwrecks, and bone-chilling curses. Kitty's adventure begins with the lingering mystery of a sunken ship called the Clara Nevada and as the plot continues to unfold this spirited story will have armchair explorers and amateur detectives alike anxiously following every twist and turn as they are swept along through the history of the Klondike Gold Rush to a suspenseful final climatic chase across the rugged terrain of Canada's Yukon, the harsh land made famous in the stories and poems of such writers as Jack London, Robert Service and Pierre Berton. It is a riveting tale that brings to glorious life the landscape and history of Alaska's inside passage and Canada's Yukon, as Kitty is caught up in an epic mystery set against the backdrop of the scenery of the Klondike Gold Rush.

Kitty Hawk and the Curse of the Yukon Gold is a perfect book to fire the imagination of readers of all ages. Filled with fascinating and highly Google-able locations and history this book will inspire anyone to learn and experience more for themselves as Kitty prepares for her next adventure - flying around the world! 

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Review: I was eager to read Kitty Hawk and the Curse of the Yukon Gold seeing as I had already read The Dragon of the Month Club by the same author and really enjoyed the creativity behind that one. I have to say, this novel wasn’t quite as good as this one, but it still an enjoyable read. You have to be appreciate Kitty Hawk as a character.

What I loved the most about this story had to be how much of an adventure it truly was. There’s no doubt this one can be pegged under this genre. But at the same time, there is also the quest element to it, and the mystery element as well. As Kitty Hawk goes on her adventure, she also sees a lot of the beautiful landscape of Alaska. It was so beautifully described that it made me wish that I was there myself. Iain Reading knew how to find the balance between giving us information about what we were seeing and experiencing as well as describing it in such a way that you had to admire the scene as if you were seeing it yourself.


However, I still felt like it was hard to peg whether this one was a young adult or middle grade book. It seemed to drift between the two age categories, and that bothered me a little. Because while Kitty Hawk was 18 and fresh out of high school, she was also having some pretty juvenile issues (such as the whole thing with Amanda) which seemed more fitting for a middle grade novel. It would be hard for both age categories to read it for that reason, so I felt a bit lukewarm about that.

Another aspect of the novel I really liked was the individuality of the characters. We get to know a little bit of detail on all of them individually – especially the four main characters. Yet we also get to see the four of them acting as one unit. We get to see their motivations and more about their background that made me actually really care for them. I liked how my own closeness to the characters seemed to steadily grow alongside Kitty’s care for them.


As for Kitty Hawk herself, I also loved her. Although at times she did seem a little too perfect, Reading resolved that by giving her a bit of a flaw at the end. Mostly, I admired her morals and how she was not afraid to stand up and hold fast to what she believed in. She had a very good moral compass that made me wish I had as strong and sure of a hold as she did on my own too. It made her so easy to love.

My main issue with the novel was at times it bordered on being a bit too wordy, which made it slower. It could have been faster paced and used fewer words, making the story more addicting. Toward the end of the novel I was really immersed and flipping pages, but personally, I felt like it took a little too long to get to that point. And the chapters were agonizingly short! It’s a personal matter, but it made the story feel disjointed to me. There were certainly new places where a new chapter did not need to be started.


Overall, this was a really good adventure story with a very important life lesson as a theme to the entirety of the novel. It told me a lot about greed, first impressions vs. true impressions, and loyalty. Hopefully there is something for you to take from reading this novel yourself, as well.

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Gif Summary:


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Links: Goodreads and Amazon!

Olivia’s Question: What’s the first thing you would miss if you were stranded in the wilderness?

Olivia-Savannah x

24 comments:

  1. A book set in Alaska, that sounds cool! I think I've only read one book set there, but it just place at a school and didn't explore anything about the country. The adventure in this one sounds fun.

    That is a bit strange that she's 18 but that it has such a middle grade feel. But I'm glad you still found things that you liked about it :-)

    Pretty sure the first thing I'd miss if stranded would be food lol. But a less necessary thing? Internet. Definitely.

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    1. Yes, this one goes into details about the country and it paints it to be so beautiful! I would miss the internet as well :/ Especially as it would be perfect tool to have for being rescued as well :P

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  2. I would assume MG right away, but it sounds like a really fun book!

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    1. I think it is! I don't know why I didn't think that when I decided to pick it up!

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  3. OMG I LOVE THIS SERIES SO MUCH LIKE SHSBSGSVSVSVSVDVD DO READ THE OTHER PARTS TOO! IT'S SO GOOD PLUS I SHIP CHARLIE AND KITTY hue hue :D
    Haniya
    boknauthors.blogspot.com

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    1. Hehehe I am so happy to know you love this book so much! I can totally see Charlie and Kitty being a thing in the end ;) Maybe I will read more in the series? I don't know yet.

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  4. I am glad to hear you read another book by this author and that you really enjoyed it. The main character definitely sounds adventurous and interesting. It could be a MG book with an older character. A lot of the times MG books have shorter chapters too. :) Great review!
    ~Jess

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    1. I haven't come across a MG book with an older character before! But that makes sense for this series. Thanks for informing me :)

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  5. I definitely thought it was a middle grade book based on the cover and title. Too bad it felt to long for you. Glad you found thinks you enjoyed in it as well. Great review!

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    1. I did manage to enjoy it, but it could've been a bit shorter :3

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  6. I don't think I've heard of this series before (nor the author). It sounds like a great adventure! And Alaska has always been a great fascination to me so it might be worth checking it out for that fact alone.

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    1. One day I hope you get to visit Alaska itself and see it with your own eyes. c:

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  7. I appreciate the LOTR gif :D But in terms of the book, I agree with you that it does tend to drift between YA and MG. It didn't bother me as much as it seemed to bother you, though. I think I was just more focused on how much I loved the internal conversations Kitty would have with herself and I let some things slide just a bit. In any case, I'm glad you enjoyed it for the most part! Lovely review, Olivia!

    Laura @BlueEyeBooks

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    1. I'm glad you do ;) I don't know why the lack of determination in audience bothered me, but maybe that's the writer coming out in me as well. Kitty is a wonderful character, though. She has a truly good heart <3

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  8. I need some adventure in my life. Even just in the pages of a book. This sounds like a journey worth taking. Thanks for the review, girl.

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    1. Books are the best places for the cheapest kind of adventure ^.^

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  9. These books look so fun! I've seen em around a few times and I always think "I should get those" lol. I always assumed they were MG, had no idea the protag was 18! Interesting that they can kind of straddle that line. anyway, great review! Makes me want to read these now!!

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    1. If that is the case, you should definitely try it out! It is an interesting mix, and to know more about it reading it would help ;)

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  10. These look good. I love the cover and the premise sounds fun!

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    1. You should give them a go in that case :D

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  11. I quite like short chapters - fools me into thinking I'm getting through the book quicker ;) Lol.

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    1. I don't know why, but it makes me feel like I'm stopping a lot and going slower xD

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  12. Hmmm...I would miss my tweezer. ;)

    Lonna @ FLYLēF

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    1. I'm sure a lot of women can agree with you there ;)

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