Author: Patricia C. Wrede
Publisher: Scholastic Press, 2009
I give this book 2.5 stars out of 5. Why I'm not giving it less is because I really didn't mind reading it, even though it was almost a waste of time. The writing flowed well, the characters had interesting personalities, and the idea behind the book was a good one.
What I didn't like about it, however, was the fact that the first 240ish pages were introduction to the last 100 pages. The book didn't get into the meat of things until near the end when the excitement started. What I mean about this is that whenever an exciting thing happened it was skimmed over with no real detail given. It felt like a journal - no attachment to anyone or anything, just a synopsis of what happened. It briefly skimmed through 13 years, starting when the POV (Point of View) was 5 and ending when she was 18. There were no jumps in time, just updates every couple of months. If the main characters had died I wouldn't have felt bad since they didn't feel real to me and the POV's feelings weren't really attached to them. Also, I felt like there was a lot of buildup to an exciting and dangerous climax which turned out to be nothing more than what the actual first chapter should have been - a way to get the story started.
On a good note, the premise was interesting. It's about magicians (not Harry Potter type magicians) in a frontier type America overrun with magical creatures. The magicians struggle to keep themselves safe from these animals by using different types of magic and different spells. For a sick day it was easy enough to read without having to put in a lot of concentration. If it turns out to be a series I'll probably read the next one in the hopes that the story will take off.
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