Jennifer wishes she could be beautiful, but feels ugly and dumpy. When she buys a talking toad at the Magic Shop, her entire life changes, and she is whisked on an adventure where she will have to choose between pursuing beauty or saving her friends.
I loved this hilarious story, and read it all in one sitting! The madcap plot is full of surprises, and the snappy dialogue makes every page interesting. I enjoyed the magic system and how it interacts in strange ways with the modern world.
I thought Jennifer was sweet and REAL and beautifully awkward. Her family is quirky and weird, and her friends are peppery and unreliable. The best part of the book was Jennifer’s various relationships with her parents, siblings, and school friends, and of course, her magical talking toad.
I adored every chapter! Can’t wait to read more from this series.
Memphis and her friends are wizards, using elemental power over Water and Fire to create a unique magic. But the rules of their magic guild are very clear; each guild must have exactly five members, no more, no less. When a member of their guild dies, Memphis scrambles to find someone to fill the empty place before their elemental magic spirals out of balance. Flynn seems like the perfect candidate to join the WaterFire guild, and Memphis senses a strange connection to him from the beginning. As the wizards work together to keep the balance within their guild, they must face ancient mysteries, and travel to the headquarters of the WaterFire elders to uncover the dark secrets of the deepest elemental power. Continue reading →
Prince Edoran races across the countryside to save his friend Weasel, who has been kidnapped by traitors to the crown. Joined by the fiery Arisa, Edoran faces cruel bandits, pirates, and mysterious priests, as they search for any trace of their friend Weasel. As he comes to terms with his own inadequacies, Edoran finds that the life of the common people, working for a daily meal, and living in a community all speak to his heart in a new way. In the midst of the political struggle for the magical Sword and Shield, Edoran and his friends discover the true nature of the magic bequeathed with those royal symbols.
I LOVE this ending!!! Such a good ending to the trilogy, and all those loose ends came together wonderfully. The big reveal is the true meaning of the Sword and Shield, and how they work together with the Crown. I was so surprised and happy and delighted with that plot twist! Continue reading →
I really enjoyed this book about a dragon under an enchantment and the little girl who gives up everything to save him and his fellow dragons!
Grisha is still a young dragon when an evil sorcerer freezes him into the shape of a small teapot. Trapped within the teapot for decades, Grisha dreams of being free once more, but as soon as a friend breaks the enchantment of the teapot, Grisha is trapped in another kind of prison. The cruel bureaucracy of Vienna keeps a close watch on the few dragons allowed to remain in the city, and every aspect of Grisha’s life is locked between rigid rules and regulations, even restricting his thoughts and words. Continue reading →
Jake and Kady’s parents were archaeologists, lost and presumed dead in the jungles while they studied ancient Mayan pyramids. When Jake and Kady use an artifact their parents found, they are transported to a mysterious world of dinosaurs and lost tribes of people. They’ve barely had time to explore and make a few friends, when the lost civilization comes under attack from the evil Skull King. Jake and Kady must choose between searching for a way home, and defending the strange world they’ve been dropped into.
Magic crystals, strange alchemy, ancient tribes and traditions, extinct animals, and archaic festivals; this adventure has such a beautifully imaginative world! Continue reading →
In this last book of the series, a whole new set of characters take center stage for another magical adventure! These children love visiting the library every week and checking out piles of books, and when Susan finds a mysterious old book without a title, she opens it to discover that the book is all about her and her friends making wishes and going on adventures! The children take turns making their wishes on the book with mixed results. Wizards and dragons are not all they seem to be, and when they begin mixing the magic with other books and modern-day events, things get out of hand until the children can learn to follow the magical rules and find their own happy endings.
Yet another wonderful book in this series! The winsome and wild writing takes you to a new world of magic and fantasy, every page drawing the reader into the story. The characters are complex and delightful, making you truly care about each of them.
I love how there are many many references to classic books like Robinson Crusoe, the Wizard of Oz, and countless others. As always, Edward Eager highlights several children’s books by Edith Nesbit, which these characters have all read, of course!
Reading it for the second time was just as entertaining as the first!
The five children are back for more magic from their wishing well. But this time the magic is including all sorts of unsuitable people in their adventures, and the children aren’t sure if they can accept these new people encroaching on their magic business.
Can the school bully really be reformed by the magic, or does he deserve to be punished for his previous schoolyard crimes? Will the children try to help an extremely annoying opera diva, or will they avoid her like the plague? And what about the crazy witch-lady from the local insane asylum? Surely, the magic wouldn’t expect them to make friends with a dangerous witch! But somehow the magic pulls through, the children find the courage and resourcefulness to overcome every obstacle, and they spread some good magic around their neighborhood while still having fun! They learn that anyone can become a friend if only you show them acceptance and kindness. Continue reading →
The three magical girls are back in the mysterious land of Cephiro for a second adventure! They don’t know who summoned them to this alien world, but they have their weapons and the Mashin spirits to help them fight, this time against invaders from neighboring worlds. Without a Pillar to hold the planet together, Cephiro is literally falling apart, and only the three Magic Knights can defend this world until someone new can take on the job of being the Pillar.
All the same things that I liked and disliked about the first volumes still hold true. The plot is obvious, the characters lack depth, and the action artwork is confusing. But the girls are cute! and I like the pretty artwork, and the adorable characters and their sweet friendships. Continue reading →
I loved rereading this children’s classic! When twins Laura and James move to the country, they find an old wishing well, and begin to test the magic waters with their wishes. The wishes seem to come true, but in such regular, mundane ways that the children can’t be sure… was it magic or not? The eccentric Lydia comes blasting into their adventures, and their neighbor Kip joins in the fun. The wishing well definitely appears to be influencing their adventures, but only when they wish something good for others, never when they wish for themselves. So the four friends attempt a quest of good deeds, with mixed results when the disgustingly spoiled rich kid, Gordy, begins to tag along and pester them. Continue reading →
When Koda picks up an ancient Native American arrowhead, he is endowed with the power of the Life Charmer, and is able to control the life force of animals. He can carve a wooden totem or likeness and summon the spirit of a living animal into the wood. But because of these god-like powers, Koda is being hunted by monsters of Native American myth and legend, and he must find allies in unlikely places among the tribes if he is to defeat his enemies and prove himself to the gods. The tribal council of elders sends Koda on a quest to prove his worth, and while Koda is still learning about his abilities, he will need the help of his new friends to stay alive.
This book reminds me strongly of the Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan. Koda is sarcastic and funny, and he surrounds himself with a variety of delightfully weird characters. The book mixes the modern-day world with ancient myth and magic. And of course, there is nothing quite like a heroic quest against monsters! Continue reading →