Today I’m pleased to welcome you to my stop on the blog tour for The Mostly Invisible Boy the first in a series of children’s fantasy books.  This is a book with a really wonderful, original and very interesting plot and I can’t wait to share my thougths and review below.  I just want to firstly say a big thank you to The Write Reads for a copy of this book and the chance to be a part of this blog tour.  Please do check out the other stops on the tour by following The Write Reads or the hashtags and I hope you enjoy my review! 🙂

Title: The Mostly Invisible Boy (Casey Grimes #1)
Author: A J Vanderhorst
Publisher: Lion Y Co. Press
Genre: Older children’s/middle grade fiction, Fantasy
Book format: Digital
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Description:  Eleven-year-old Casey is stubbornly friendly, but he’s eternally the new kid at Vintage Woods Middle School. Students look right through him—and they’re not faking. Casey doesn’t know why he’s mostly-invisible, but when he scales a colossal oak, he discovers a fortress in its branches. The forgotten sentry tree marks the border between his safe, suburban life and a fierce frontier.
Casey and his little sister Gloria infiltrate Sylvan Woods, a secret forest society devoted to ancient, wild things. Sky-high footpaths. Survival sewing. Monster control. Shockingly, people here actually see Casey—but being seen isn’t enough. He wants to belong.
Keeping his identity hidden–while struggling to prove he fits–is hard enough, but Butcher Beasts have returned to Sylvan Woods after a hundred years. Trickery is under siege. As the monsters close in, and the fearsome Sylvan Watch hunts Casey down, he and his newfound friends must unearth abandoned magic, buried at the forest’s roots…or be devoured along with everyone else, Sylvans and civilians alike.
A fast-paced middle grade fantasy/adventure book with all the monsters kids could ever hope for.

*Free copy provided by publisher for review…

Review:  This is a really fun fantasy story! Casey Grimes is mostly invisible, the school bus driver almost misses him, kids at school seem to see right through him and teachers don’t even notice when he walks out of class. Casey doesn’t know why he seems to be invisible but when he gets home he decides to go into the woods. Being an excellent climber, when Casey finds a huge old oak tree he decides to climb up. But this oak tree is different to others, and when Casey climbs up he finds a fotress which is hiding a lot of secrets.

This is such a fun and interesting children’s fantasy adventure which hooked me from the first pages. When Casey ends up climbing a tree he finds things there that he didn’t expect. Soon he takes his sister to see the oak tree, and together they discover the Sylvan Woods and the strange creatures that lurk there. The story is interesting from the start, with Casey seeming to be almost completely invisible at school. He’s only visible to his mum, dad and sister when he gets home, the reason for this being unknown. When Casey discovers the Sylvan Woods with Gloria they soon find a secret forest society and a school there which I couldn’t help but feel was a bit like Harry Potter, but with more combat and much less magic.

The story is easy to follow although I did feel that there was a bit of detail lacking in some of the scenes. Although I usually prefer faster-paced stories which aren’t bogged down in too much detail, which this is, the plot in this one sometimes felt like it jumped in places, such as talking of an aqueduct and then having crossed it already without any description of the crossing itself, or fast descriptions of moving somewhere which made it harder for me to work out exactly what had happened. Although it’s a minor issue and doesn’t affect the story overall, I did feel like I was missing out on some details that would have added to the atmosphere and action of the story and made it even better.

The story is well thought out, I like what happens at the school, the waterfall showers, the various interesting classes that the characters took and I liked the creepy and weird beasts that roamed in the woods. I love the relationship between Casey and his sister, as well as the relationship and sometimes conflict with Luci and also Robert. The plot moves on quickly and although I would have liked a bit more detail in what happened, I just love the story and what happens with the Woods, the history of it and then what happens with the characters and their adventure at the end. The magic of the plot at the end is what I loved the most, and the wonderful importance of the trees to the Sylvan Woods throughout the story.

The book has a satisfying ending and a great nod to more books in the series which there already are (book two is called Trickery School). After reading this I want to find out what happens to Casey and the other characters. It does feel a bit Harry Potteresque at times with the school and what I hope will be a long series of adventures with Casey and his friends. But this is very much an original tale, set among the woodlands, with nature and the magic of the forest being so important to the story and it’s this along with some of the interesting characters, I especially loved Gloria and all of her moments, and the interesting and different creatures that exist in the woods that made me love this story so much!

I would recommend this book to anyone who loves children’s fantasy or adventures stories. It has a very interesting plot and is an easy read, but is just lacking in a bit of detail now and again that makes the plot feel a little rushed at times. However it may have just been me, and it’s still is a great book with a story that I do recommend to anyone interested, and I do plan on reading the next book in the series myself as soon as I can! 🙂

Buy the book

The Mostly Invisible Boy book cover

Buy book from Amazon UK    Buy from Amazon US

About the author

AJ Vanderhorst author pic

AJ Vanderhorst has had many jobs, including journalist, paramedic, escape artist, and baby whisperer. One time in fifth grade, he built a traffic-stopping fort in a huge oak tree, using only branches and imagination, and slept there for a week.

Now he and his wife live in a woodsy house with their proteges and a ridiculous number of pets, including a turtle with a taste for human toes. This makes AJ an expert on wild, dangerous things—invisibility spells, butcher beasts, hungry kids, you get the idea.

He is the only author in the world who enjoys pickup basketball and enormous bonfires, preferably not at the same time. He and his family have drawn up several blueprints for their future tree castle. Visit AJ online at

Click to visit author’s website    Click to visit author on twitter


I hope you enjoyed my stop and review on the tour for this great book.  And please do check out the other stops on the tour! 🙂

What do you think of this book?  Do you like children’s fantasy adventure stories?  Let me know what you think in the comments below 🙂