When Imogene is five years old, she is suddenly left at her aunt’s house with no explanation from her mother. She is only promised that she will return for her in five years time. Grieved by the loss of both of her parents, Imogene is forced to stay with her horrible aunt with the only hope that her mother will keep her promise. When she turns ten years old, she finally learns the truth. She comes from a land under the ocean known as the Pacific Kingdom, where her parents rule as King and Queen. However, things are not as they seem, as the former King and Imogene’s uncle has returned to the Kingdom and plans on overruling her father. With the help of her new friends, Imogene must help to return the Kingdom to it’s rightful state.
This book had great potential and there were certain things I liked about it and others that I didn’t. Imogene is left by her mother at her horrible Auntie Agnes’s house with no idea why her mother was leaving her. I loved the mystery and suspense, with Imogene wondering if she had done something wrong or if her mother was ok. I also enjoyed the relationship that she built with Sampson, her auntie’s butler, as he seemed to be the only thing that was able to keep Imogene sane. However I did feel as if this dragged on for too long, as I was eager to see the reunion between Imogene and her parents. I was expecting some sort of action to happen far sooner than it did, as even when Imogene arrived in the Pacific Kingdom the book spent way too long acclimatising her to her new life. The book is quite short to begin with, so I felt that such a big build up was not a great idea, as the majority of the action happened in the last quarter of the book. I felt myself being slightly bored and distracted while reading the first three quarters, and although it is a short book it took me about a week to get through it. However I did read the last quarter fairly quickly, as the action picked up and I wanted to find out how Imogene and her friends were going to overthrow her Uncle.
One thing that seems a little tedious to mention but annoyed me throughout the book was the amount of exclamation points used. I started to notice them a few chapters in, and found myself distracted by how many I was finding, and how the majority of them were unnecessary. There was at least one on every page, and it was extremely difficult to just ignore them and enjoy the story. I’m not usually overly critical when it comes to grammar, but I really feel as if the book should be re-edited to remove the majority of these. It made the exclamation point lose it’s true meaning, as they were used in cases where nothing was happening apart from Imogene talking to the butler or taking tea with her aunt.
I loved the characters in this book, especially Sampson and her best friend Marina. They were extremely likeable characters and were always willing to help Imogene. However I felt that I didn’t know enough about Serenito, or the reason behind why he hated his brother so much as to lock him in the dungeons. I felt that the time taken by showing what Imogene ate for breakfast or how she had to go to school could have been replaced by giving him a little more back story. Although it was a minor plot detail, I felt it to be quite cringy that Imogene seemed to be developing feelings for Sampson’s son. Imogene is ten years old! I know for a fact that I was not interested in boys at all when I was Imogene’s age. The ending of the novel made it seem like this was something that would be expanded on in the sequel, and reading about a ten year old developing romantic feelings is not something I would enjoy reading. However I was interested in what the dragonfly represented and how it would fit into the sequel. If I was to enjoy the sequel, I feel as if it would need to have more action than the first book, and possibly less exclamation points.
Imogene of the Pacific Kingdom is now available to purchase!