The Frights of Fiji

Originally titled "From Frights to Flaws", this story is the exciting and enchanting first book in the "Magical Missions" series.
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Book Description:

A world of magic and adventure awaits…

Sent to live with her strict, aloof, and uncaring uncle after her parents are killed in a car accident, twelve-year-old orphan Alyssa McCarthy longs for the life she used to have—one filled with fun and love. Then one stormy night, a message appears in the raindrops on the window that will change everything.

“Your life will never be the same again, as magic will interfere.”

Before long, Alyssa is kidnapped by Master Beau, a banished sorcerer with a mysterious connection to her who can only regain his power by weakening hers. Suddenly hurled into a world of wizardry filled with fantastical beasts and marvelous technology beyond her wildest imagination, Alyssa must defeat Master Beau if she ever wants to get home again. But Master Beau will stop at nothing, including using Alyssa’s friends, to ensure he is triumphant.

Originally titled “From Frights to Flaws”, this story is the exciting and enchanting first book in the “Magical Missions” series.
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In ‘The Frights Of Fiji’ by Sunayna Prasad, we meet a brave and conscientious protagonist whose current predicament forces her into a life of drudgery and endless chores. After her parents died in a fatal car crash five years ago, Alyssa was sent to live with her Uncle Bruce and her Aunt Laura and their daughter, Hailey. It was only after her Aunt Laura passed away due to an allergic reaction to berries found inside her chocolate truffle that things truly got hard for Alyssa. Uncle Bruce blamed Alyssa for Aunt Laura’s death, going on to place restrictions on her and going on to treat her the way he does. The only thing to tide Alyssa over her horrible predicament was the possibility of her godfather Alex coming to her rescue. Ultimately, he is the only lifeline Alyssa has after her parents died along with her beloved Aunt Laura. Alyssa clings to the idea of her moving in with him as her last possible hope. In such a dire situation, it is only reasonable that magic would interject itself into her life and intervene, but when she tells the babysitter, Mrs. Hutchison, that magic is popping all over their Bursnell, New Jersey residence, Alyssa doesn’t quite get the reaction that she thought she would be getting. Uncle Bruce and Mrs. Hutchinson were strict disciplinarians with guidelines from the 60’s with Alyssa wishing they lived with their heads more in the 21st century cloud – what with their outmoded rules and regulations. They also act like they don’t have an inch of magic in their system, so it was no wonder that they didn’t believe Alyssa when she explained that magic was happening all around them. First, magic came in the form of raindrops turning a grayish blue before darkening into black, appearing like ink falling from the sky, leaving a message that told Alyssa: “Your life will never be the same again, Alyssa McCarthy, as magic will interfere.” Next, the mud starts bubbling, and then a marble talking statue appears before her, warning Alyssa about an evil sorcerer, named, Master Duchamp, with a mysterious connection to her, who was coming to kidnap her to the Fiji islands so that he could enslave her and absorb magic from her. The statue’s, who prefers to be referred to as a marble figure, name is Simon and goes on to inform Alyssa that her Uncle Bruce is also in grave danger. Master Duchamp has plans to extricate him from his duties as Alyssa’s legal guardian. Fast-forward, and we see Uncle Bruce lose all traces of his memory and with him out of the way, Master Duchamp abducts Alyssa from her home and takes her to a faraway magical land called, Yanowic. Even though her home life was anything but great, once she lands in Yanowic, Alyssa is desperate to go home. Eventually, with the help of Simon and her new friends, Isabelle and Mathias, Alyssa finds out that one child is not enough for Duchamp – his scheming masterplan was to kidnap all of her friends. Alyssa learns that Jasmine, Destiny, Hailey, and Madison’s lives were also in danger. But unable to stop the evil wizard and his cronies in time, Alyssa has little power but to see her and her friend’s lives unravel before her eyes. Having lived a life of hardship with little to no rewards and having survived it, Alyssa’s spirit is not undermined, instead, it burns bright. With resolve, Alyssa harnesses her steady positive stream of thought and her stealth-worthiness in battling Master Duchamp. She literarily takes destiny into her own hands by infusing good thoughts into a magical seashell that transports her good memories by turning them into a secret weapon that saves the girls’ lives. One of things I noticed about ‘The Frights Of Fiji’ is that magic appears mundane on the surface. The story goes on to integrate ordinary objects into this fantasy retelling giving it a sci-fi twist. While nothing too fantastical happens at first, like mud splattering and putting the babysitter to sleep, the book does do a good job of implementing the information world of today within a magical scope, taking the best of both worlds. After a life of technology restrictions (Uncle Bruce made strict rules that kept all things that could spoil Alyssa off limits, including no phones and only allowing computer access for school work and research for only things school-related), Alyssa was duly impressed by Yanowic’s technological excess. Readers will be interested to find that the magical land has the Wiphone and Wipod, the magical equivalent to the iPhone and iPod and that they even had their own version of Costco, called, Arietta’s. With one foot in this modern-era of technology and imbuing the story with a world of magical and fantastical elements, this is a fascinating tale with great imageries and descriptions that draws heavily from such predecessors like Harry Potter and Narnia. ‘The Frights of Fiji’ is a children’s novel that readers of all ages could enjoy. This is a thrilling and fast-paced read that is highly enjoyable and engaging. An entertaining book that both the young and old could enjoy and cherish. Towards the end, we see ‘The Frights of Fiji’ land on an open-ended ending. It would be great to see Prasad continue on with the series, and I look forward to what she might have in store for us, readers, in continuing Alyssa and her friends’ adventure in Yanowic.

-- my nguyen

Sunayna Prasad (Author)

I was born in Houston, Texas on November 22nd, 1993. I moved to Long Island, New York shortly after turning one. I attended school from 1998 and graduated in 2011. I started writing stories at around six years old. I wrote until the age of ten, when I took a break for six years. I returned to writing stories at about sixteen years old. Ever since then, I enjoyed writing stories, particularly for children.

Originally titled "From Frights to Flaws", this story is the exciting and enchanting first book in the "Magical Missions" series.

Dear Reader, author’s recently published book “The Frights of Fiji” is now available on leading bookstores, get your copy now and help the author by writing a review of the book.
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