New from Granity Stuidos is their third middle grade fantasy novel with an emphasis on sports. Each stands on its own with a different author for each story. Basketball was the focus in the first book, The Wizenard Series; Tennis in Legacy and the Queen; and now track with Epoca—The Tree of Ecrof.

917LzuB4jKLFROM AMAZON: Set in an alternate classical world dominated by sports and a magical power called grana, Epoca: The Tree of Ecrof is the story of two children: the lowly born Rovi and the crown princess Pretia who uncover and battle terrible evil and discover their inner strength along the way.
Epoca: The Tree of Ecrof takes place at the most elite sports academy in the land, where the best child-athletes are sent to hone their skills. When Rovi and Pretia arrive, each harboring a secret about themselves, they begin to suspect that something evil is at play at the school. In the course of their first year, they must learn to master their grana in order to save the world from dark forces that are rising.

Published: 2019   Page Count: 368

The tale is told in third person with alternating chapters devoted to Pretia and Rovi. They are quite opposite in their upbringing and the contrast makes them interesting characters readers will enjoy. Mystery abounds in not only what each is hiding, but also why the once colorful tree on the grounds of the Academy is dying. These elements add to the suspenseful tone present in the 29 chapters.

The combination of sports and fantasy is the real draw, although there was not as much emphasis on sports in this book. It is more character related. The layout for the book is beautifully done and extends to the inside with a soft rainbow of pastels on each page.

Perfect for the middle grader who generally sticks to contemporary sport novels. They will find a much different take on preparing for a big event. Reluctant readers may have trouble getting through the lengthy text, but if this unusual take on combining sports and fantasy gets them to read then I’m all for it.


Ivy Claire is a former world ranked athlete and national and collegiate squash champion. She spent a decade competing internationally before turning full-time to writing. She holds a degree in classics and in a parallel life is a literary novelist. She lives in Los Angeles with her family.


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About Greg Pattridge

Climbing another mountain...always striving to reach the next peak in my life and career.
This entry was posted in Middle Grade Book Reviews, New Release and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Oh, I really like that the story is set in the “most elite sports academy in the land.” Great idea to combine sports and fantasy. Made me think about Harry Potter series and role sports played. No wizards in this story, only the most talented young athlethes. Sounds like an excellent read.

  2. Sue Kooky says:

    I honestly wish more books focused on sports, sports are super cool and interesting! It’s unfortunate this book didn’t too much either, but the combo still sounds super cool! I’m intrigued. Thanks for the review!

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