While reading this story about Simon and his adventures in the spider kingdom I always had to think about Ron Weasley and his fear of those creatures. I had similar feelings every time I looked at the cover and my imagination was running wild. Arachnids aren´t mine either. It was no fun to see the spider on the cover of the German edition every time I picked it up to read a few more pages. But on the other hand, it fits. The story IS all about spiders and other insects and though it is not the best thing I´ve seen in my head, some scenes were really hilarious to read.

Simon Thorn And The Black Widow´s Web*
by Aimée Carter
Simon Thorn Series #4
Publisher Oetinger on July 23, 2018
Genre Fantasy
Pages 346
Format Hardcover
Source Library

“It takes a lot of courage to do what you plan to do”, Leo said, jumping onto the swing next to Simon. “But the things that are really important are usually the hardest. I believe in you. You are more capable than you think!”
Simon needs three more pieces of the deadly grip rod to assemble the powerful weapon and destroy it forever. His dangerous mission takes him to the land of insects and Arachnids, where rebels claim the throne of the Black Widow Queen and threaten his girlfriend Ariana. Simon can turn into all manner of spiders and insects, but it´s swarming with spies and traitors everywhere! How is he going to be able to protect his friends, find the third part, preserve the peace of the Empire and at the same time keep his special ability secretive? Simon has to decide who he wants to trust … (personal translation by ©Vi at Inkvotary)
With Ariana not being herself lately, Simon and his other friends are having a hard time to get what they are looking for. Something is utterly wrong in the Empire of the Black widow Queen. Within no time Simon finds himself and his entire family in a war with ants and their majesty who has plans others want to claim as their own.

It was weird to see Simon as a spider. Sure, the author has written this story, too, in a very joyful manner and with great sensitivity. There is nothing you can´t see or read. But for kids who don´t like those kinds of animals, it could be a bit hard sometimes, to keep reading. Despite that, the story was very entertaining and showed again, that family is not always what it seems to be at first sight. And with Noah and his very own plans, you never know what´s around the next corner. Yes, this novel contains many unexpected twists and turns.

It comes more and more through, that not every figure in this novel or series, is what they seemed to be. Noah is one of them. He does something, Simon barely understands and shows that the is, although they are identical twins, not at all the same. Noah acts and thinks completely different from how Simon acts and thinks.

Sure, they look identical, but other than that? Not much the same. Both try to free their mother, but both use very different ways to achieve that. And while Simon does everything to keep his friends and family safe, Noah actually does not care. He is blind, arrogant and totally focused on himself and his mother.

Yep, this one was a wonderful read too. But with a different tone. Maybe because of the fact, that spiders were everywhere, I couldn´t turn my head off the way I could while reading the other books of this series. Nevertheless, I had my pleasure with it.

Happy reading

*This book was, at the time this review was published, only available in the German language under the title “Animox Der Biss Der Schwarzen Witwe”.

Aimée Carter
Aimée Carter ©private

Aimée Carter is the author of Simon Thorn along with two YA series The Blackcoat Rebellion and The Goddess Test, of which The Goddess Inheritance was a 2013 Cybils nominee. She started writing fan-fiction at eleven, began her first original story four years later, and hasn´t stopped writing since. Besides writing and reading, she enjoys seeing movies, playing with her puppies, and wrestling with the puzzles in the paper each morning. She lives in Novi, Michigan. 


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