Review: The Griffin’s Egg by Cole Poindexter

The Griffin's Egg by Cole Poindexter cover shows a forest scene with a large egg in the foreground. The stone-colored egg has dark veins running over it.

The Griffin’s Egg
Cole Poindexter
The Wild Rose Press
Published January 15, 2024

Amazon | Bookshop | Goodreads

About The Griffin’s Egg

Lost in a wild West Virginia forest, Phoebe Gray’s world is upended when she finds an irritable goblin named Gnish-Gnash. She’s stumbled into Lerch Hollow, a place of magic and mystery where trolls lurk in shadows and mermaids sway with the tide.

The young adventurer soon finds herself caught up in a race against time; the Dark Mistress Lucinda is on the hunt for the last Griffin’s egg, for its power will make her unstoppable. It is up to Phoebe to protect the egg while discovering the secrets of her own magical connection to the mysterious wizard Thatcher.

With Gnish at her side and her grandfather’s old cloak on her back, Phoebe must protect this enchanted world from destruction.

The Griffin's Egg on Goodreads

My Review

I liked the gentle pace of this story. Lots happens– Phoebe faces a sorceress who seems determined to steal and eat the Griffin’s egg and become all-powerful. The way the story is broken up, though, prevents it from building up a lot of tension. Phoebe faces lots of challenges, but most are resolved in some way in the same scene. The resolution leads to the next problem for her to deal with. That pace makes this a good pick for a sensitive reader who might stress over longer-term conflicts.

The characters also don’t hold grudges or have really complex reactions to each other. For example, when a character who first worked against Phoebe decides to help her instead, Phoebe welcomes them to her team. She might have a brief moment where she considers that they tried to hurt her or lied to her when they were on opposing sides of the conflict, but she pretty quickly rationalizes that they should work together and get along now that they want the same thing.

THE GRIFFIN’S EGG is a portal fantasy in which Phoebe goes through a magic portal to a fantasy world, leaving the forest of West Virginia behind. She only spends a little time at the beginning and end of the book in the real world. I couldn’t tell if her real-world experience was supposed to take place in the world we live in or if there was a reimagined history. Her grandfather, who was born in the late 1950s, had served in a war that he didn’t want to talk about. The book never specifies what conflict it was.

All in all, I thought this was a fun, sweet story that would be great for younger middle grade readers interested in fantasy stories.

The Griffin's Egg on Bookshop

Content Notes

Recommended for Ages 8 to 10.

Most of the characters are mythical creatures.

Profanity/Crude Language Content

Romance/Sexual Content

Spiritual Content
Contains mythical creatures, such as goblins, trolls, and griffins. Some characters have the ability to perform magic.

Violent Content
Situations of peril. Brief battle sequences– nothing gory.

Drug Content

Note: This post contains affiliate links, which do not cost you anything to use, but which help support this blog. I received a free copy of THE GRIFFIN’S EGG in exchange for my honest review. All opinions my own.

Marvelous Middle-Grade Mondays with Greg Pattridge at Always in the Middle

Marvelous Middle-Grade Mondays

I’m sharing this post as a part of a weekly round-up of middle-grade posts called Marvelous Middle-Grade Mondays. Check out other blogs posting about middle-grade books today on Marvelous Middle-Grade Mondays at Always in the Middle with Greg Pattridge.

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About Kasey

Reads things. Writes things. Fluent in sarcasm. Willful optimist. Cat companion, chocolate connoisseur, coffee drinker. There are some who call me Mom.

16 Responses to Review: The Griffin’s Egg by Cole Poindexter

  1. Interesting. There are a lot of young readers who don’t deal with tension very well, so this will surely find an audience. I do love the cover. Thanks for the post.

  2. Sounds like a fun book!

  3. Sounds like a good story for the right reader. I prefer the backdrop of a tense scene to last a bit longer, but the plot keeps moving forward for young readers. As an aside-I always appreciate your Content Notes. Thanks for being a part of Marvelous Middle Grade Monday this week.

  4. Valinora Troy says:

    This sounds like a sweet story for young fantasy readers. Who can resist a griffin in danger? Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  5. Carol Baldwin says:

    Nice review. It sounds like you had some issues with the book though. I like reviewers who point out pros and cons of a book. Thoughtfully written!

    • Kasey says:

      Thanks, Carol. I struggle with the negative parts. If the review isn’t honest, though, I don’t think it’s very helpful.

  6. How do you go about forgiving, forgetting, and trusting people who have tried to harm you? I would think that might be an essential theme of the story.

    • Kasey says:

      Yeah… I think there was room to explore that a lot more. I don’t know if the author was aiming for younger readers and was keeping the emotional arc of the story much simpler? I could see it being a good bridge between chapter books and middle grade lit.

  7. Ms Yingling says:

    It’s been increasingly hard to get my students to read fantasy, with the exception of killer ghosts. Do have some die hard Riordan fans, but since fantasy books are often in long series, they take more committment than my students want to make. It does sound like an interesting book, though!

    • Kasey says:

      Haha! Killer ghosts, huh? That’s pretty funny. I can’t blame them having an aversion to long series. I think I read the whole first series by Riordan and after that I just couldn’t keep up. I can hang in for a duology or trilogy at max, except in very rare cases.

  8. I like portal stories but worry that there’s not enough tension in the story for me. It does sound like a sweet fantasy. Thanks for sharing it with us this week.

    • Kasey says:

      Yeah, I think I prefer a little more grit in my books, too. I can see it being a good fit for early MG readers, or someone really needing a gentle story. Thanks, Natalie!