He's ready to leave kid-dom behind. But can he stand tall against an army of barf-inducing beasts? Toby Baxter can't wait to be a teenager. On the cusp of turning thirteen, the superhero-obsessed boy's jaw drops when a baffling stranger appears and begs him for help. But when he's led through a portal on a whirlwind trip to a magical land, he's terrified to be plunged mid-battle between elves and a legion of stinky trolls. Bewildered and queasy, Toby is confused when his new friends claim he is the hero who will lead them to victory. And now only his dangerous quest to retrieve a legendary slaying sword can save his skin… and turn the tide of war. Can this newly minted teen become a real warrior and rise up as the strange realm's savior? The Adventures of Toby Baxter: The River Elf, The Giant, and the Closet is a high-flying middle grade fantasy. If you like daring journeys, hilarious characters, and heartfelt lessons about confidence, then you'll love Tim Wright's timeless tale.
Tim Wright's newest book is a fun page-turner, just what you'd want it to be if kids are going to read it. Meanwhile, I'm an adult and thoroughly enjoyed it. The plot is action-packed. The characters are iconic. The interactions glow with real life and hidden layers of soulfulness. While this novel follows along the path of Lord of the Rings, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, and Harry Potter, the sense of humor in Toby Baxter's adventures, and the wrestling this boy does with feelings, family, and manhood resonates as profoundly contemporary. A wonderful read for children and adults. Pass it out to everyone you know.
--Michael Gurian, New York Times bestselling author of The Wonder of Boys and The Stone Boys
This is the best book my grandpa and I have read together. It talks about the kind of challenges and issues I face as a 13 year-old. I know that growing up to be a man will not be easy...but Toby Baxter has helped give me some tools--"my powers"--to help me on my journey. This is such a fun story to read!
--13-Year-Old Bryton James
The Adventures of Toby Baxter is a fantasy mystery of epic proportions–and it’s captivating from page one. The reach of this book extends from middle- grade readers all the way to adults of any age. Try it, you’ll see what we mean. The pages are full of intrigue and twists and mystery–all while Toby struggles to find his place and purpose in his new world. The setting is lush, the creatures are awesome–and just as lovable as the characters, and the bad guys are pretty freaking scary. Full of fun, rich in suspense and brimming with adventure!--Readingwithyourkids.com
“Join the Big Adventure! Toby Baxter leads kids on a journey that reinforces a plan of hope for every young person! I was inspired reading these pages!”--Dr. Gregg Jantz, Founder, The Center-A Place of Hope
As a teacher with forty years of classroom experience, I have found that boys are constantly looking for role models, asking what it means to be a man. Tim Wright, with his book, The Adventures of Toby Baxter, has given boys insight into that issue and parents a vehicle for discussing that topic with their child. The story itself is a whimsical fantasy that takes newly 13-year-old Toby on a wild adventure involving giants, elves, trolls, strong male and female characters, and even the Arizona Cardinals. Through his adventure Toby, just as his father before him, finds his "power" and begins the journey to manhood. Tim's use of the acronym H.E.R.O. (Honorable Enterprising Responsible Original) becomes the foundation for Toby's growth as an individual and an excellent place to start a conversation between parents and sons--and between parents and daughters for that matter. It's definitely a book to be shared. Can't wait for Toby's next adventure to begin. --Mike Shelton, Educator
In The Adventures of Toby Baxter: The River Elf, The Giant and The Closet, Tim Wright has created a rite of passage story for tween and early teen boys and girls that is sure to capture their imaginations! Filled with all the requisite elements of a great fantasy adventure, Toby encounters elves, trolls, and other magical creatures as he discovers what it means to be a Hero. The plot is engaging and fast-paced, so it will appeal to readers who like a story that keeps moving. At the same time, it will challenge readers to examine deeper issues like what it means to really live by one's values, especially when faced with situations that call those values into question. Parents and teachers who join with young people in reading this novel will find many opportunities for rich discussions that can help boys define who they want to be as they grow into men, starting with the all-important question: How will you use your power? --Eva Dwight, MEd, CPDT
With a touch of fantasy magic, thirteen year old Toby Baxter is transported to a land of elves, trolls, and giants to discover what it means to grow into a man. Wright's storytelling will appeal to kids and parents who are looking for adventure and a hero they can relate to. Entertaining and yet timely, Toby Baxter will capture your heart.
--Linda Cooper, B.S. in Ed., M.A.
An 'epic' read that will not only delight and inspire, but which will also become a trusted companion, that offers deep affirmation, wise counsel, and unending hope for all young people as they navigate their own journey on the way of life.
--Pastor Mark Schultz, LifeWay Lutheran Church, Australia, fan of Australian Rules Football