Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Cryptogram Chaos: A Virtual Reality Adventure by Linda Covella


Cryptogram Chaos: A Virtual Reality Adventure
by Linda Covella

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GENRE: Middle grade adventure

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BLURB:

What if you were 8, or 11, or 14, and you could race cars at 150 mph, bungee jump, fly, eat all the ice cream and candy you wanted, or become powerful avatars such as Robobug, Kulshedra the dragon, and Altai, the gryphon avatar?

All this and more is possible in the ultimate virtual reality game The Cryptogram Connection created by 14-year-old computer whiz Cody Reynolds and his two classmates, Nicole Nash and Kerry McCorkle. To advance to different levels in the game, players must solve cryptograms, or secret codes. (Readers also get to solve the cryptograms.)

They create their game to be used with the latest VR technology developed by local game manufacturer NuVision Games–a headset with biosensors that transmit signals to the brain, fooling it into tasting, hearing, feeling, seeing, and smelling what was programmed into the game. The games are as close to reality as reality itself.

The game becomes every kids’ virtual dream, and Cody, Nicole, and Kerry, besides becoming national celebrities, make more money than they ever imagined. But The Cryptogram Connection turns into “cryptogram chaos” when an evil presence inhabits Zazar, the laser avatar and the most powerful, and takes control of the game. It’s up to the three partners to enter the game and fight Zazar to save the gamers from virtual—and real—disaster.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Excerpt One:

I sat on my bed, biting my lip, jiggling my leg, tapping my finger on my eMaster. The handheld computer was ready to go. This was it. Tonight we’d test The Cryptogram Connection. We’d meet in the ice cream parlor at exactly twelve o’clock midnight. Our parents, Brad, and Kerry’s zillion little brothers would be asleep.

The four sensors pulsed slightly against my head. I watched the red numbers on the digital clock change.

11:57. I stared at the computer and the home page I’d created. Ice cream sundaes, racecars, scooters, and manazomes repeatedly spun to the center of the screen, becoming larger and larger, until they zoomed to the back and faded away.

11:58. I thought of Nicole and Kerry sitting with their computers. Waiting like me. I thought of all the hours and days and weeks we’d spent working on the game. I thought of how they were counting on me, on my code. I threw back my head and whispered, “Oh, man, I hope the game works.”

11:59. I keyed in my password then held my thumb over the enter icon. I adjusted the Ultra on my head. Would there be any glitches? Probably. Any major ones? Man, I hoped not.
The clock blinked.

12:00. Holding my breath like I was at the top of the highest hill on a roller coaster, like I was about to fly down the hill with my arms raised in the air, I pushed the button.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Linda Covella’s varied background and education have led her down many paths, but one thing she never strayed from is her love of writing.
In writing for kids and teens, she hopes to bring to them the feelings books gave her when she was a child: the worlds they opened, the things they taught, the feelings they expressed.
Linda is a member of the Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI).
She lives in Santa Cruz, CA with her husband, Charlie, and dog, Ginger.

Connect with Linda:



Twitter: https://twitter.com/lindacovella @lindacovella










My review:

This is a great book for gamers and readers that love that love puzzles. The author really drew me in and I felt like I was in the virtual world as well. Then as I read on I was thrilled with the puzzles and it made the story interactive for me. I felt like I was part of the team trying to stop the bad guys. The answers were included as well, so they did not take away from the experience or frustrate younger readers. There are also great descriptions in the book that made me feel like I was in the author's world. The ending was good and I really wish that this is a series that can grow with children and get more challenging. I also think that this would be a great choose your own ending adventure. I can not wait to read more from this writer. I am giving this book a 4/5. I was given a copy to review, however all opinions are my own.  


~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GIVEAWAY 
Linda Covella will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

36 comments:

  1. Congrats on the new book and good luck on the book tour!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Ally! I appreciate you stopping by!

      Delete
  2. I enjoyed the excerpt, thanks for the chance to win :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Lisa. Good luck in the drawing!

      Delete
  3. Good Morning! Have a terrific day and thank you for the chance to win

    ReplyDelete
  4. I was a huge gamer in middle/high school so this sounds like a book I'll love to read - thanks for sharing :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's very cool, Victoria. Maybe you'll be inspired to get back into it. :-D Thanks for visiting!

      Delete
    2. My son would probably love that LOL

      Delete
    3. The family that games together... :-)

      Delete
  5. Thank you for hosting and for your review!

    ReplyDelete
  6. What an interesting and unique excerpt.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Thank you for informing me about this book.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I have added this book to my TBR list and look forward to reading this book!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Replies
    1. Thank you, Rita, and thanks for visiting!

      Delete
  10. I'm running late today but still wanting to stop by to thank you for the chance to win

    ReplyDelete
  11. I am really enjoying following this tour, thank you for all the great blog posts and excerpts!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I enjoyed reading the excerpt. This book sounds like such an interesting and intriguing read. Looking forward to checking out this book.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Hope you are having a fabulous weekend! Looking forward to reading this book!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Thank you for your honest review, much appreciated!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Sounds like a good read, I enjoyed the blurb. Thank you for the giveaway too. Have a great day

    ReplyDelete
  16. I have to say, you said what if you are 11, 14 or so and could drive at 150 miles per hour? or eat all the ice cream you want? I just have to say all the things you listed I want to do at my age!!! Lol I would love to do everything you listed, and the ice cream one would really be my favorite!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cyndi, I know what you mean! I'd get my fill of pasta, though. LOL In the story, the game becomes so popular, adults DO start playing it.

      Delete
    2. Pasta is great too!! Heck i would be happy to eat anything and not gain weight!! lol book sounds great. looking forward to it.

      Delete
  17. I just found out that Cryptogram Chaos has won a Gold Medal from Children's Literary Classics for the category of teen fiction! Very excited. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  18. What is the best book that you have read recently? Thanks for the giveaway. I hope that I win. Bernie W BWallace1980(at)hotmail(d0t)com

    ReplyDelete
  19. I keep seeing this and I really want to read it, love puzzles and games, sounds great. Hope to be able to get it soon. Thank you for the giveaway too. Maybe I will eat something bad when I eat it.... lol

    ReplyDelete
  20. Great review! Excited to read this book!

    ReplyDelete