Audio and Book Review: The Magesterium

If you have the time, listening to series is fun!  It’s sort of like reading a really, really long book.  Sometimes it’s great to take a break between each book, and sometimes it’s good to keep reading each book in the series one after another until you get to the end.  On the Magisterium series, I’ve stopped listening to them in the middle, because I needed a change of pace.  I may end up reading the other books in print, just because that’s faster, and I want to know what happens!

How do you read series?  All in one gulp, or alternating with other books to prolong living in that particular book world?  Do you listen to audio series the same way?

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The Magisterium Series:
iron trial and copper gauntlet
The Iron Trial
by Holly Black and Cassandra Clare
Read by Paul Boehmer
9 CDs, 10.5 hours

The Copper Gauntlet
by Holly Black and Cassandra Clare
Read by Paul Boehmer
7 CDs, 8 1/2 hours

iron trialCallum Hunt knows that he’s one of the “weird kids” at school.  He doesn’t know why, but part of it might be that he’s angry all the time…and the other kids know it.  He’s angry that his father is different from other fathers, angry that he can’t play sports normally because one of his legs is shorter than the other, angry that he doesn’t have a mother.  But mostly, he’s angry because all kinds of things seem to go wrong around him.  Call’s  father has told him that it’s because of the magic he’s inherited. But even though magic sounds cool, and like something that would be fun, Call’s father has forbidden him to even think about it.  Because magic is evil, it’s twisted, and it killed his mother.

Magic?  At first Call thinks his father is crazy, but then one day he picks up Call in his antique Rolls Royce from school and drives the two of them to a run down old airplane hanger.  The large room is filled with kids and parents.  All the kids are excited and happy…ready to complete several tests to qualify to go to The Magisterium, an elite school for mages.  There are even several kids from his school in the group!

Even though the Masters of the school have an opening announcement that makes magic and attending the Magisterium sound like an exciting adventure, Call’s father has told him that he has to fail the tests.  If Call succeeds the Trials to get into The Magisterium, he will end up so deep underground in the school’s cave system that he’ll never see the sun again.  He says that the caverns are dark and sinister and full of danger.  According to Call’s father, any use of magic, whatever the intent, will kill him, if it doesn’t warp him first.

To please his father and save his life, Call works hard to do his worst at every Trial.  But even though he fails the trials quite spectacularly, he’s still chosen by Master Rufus to be an apprentice.  As he’s leaving for the caverns of the magic school, his father throws a knife to him…or is it at him?  Callum isn’t sure, but the warning his father shouts is unmistakable.  Then his father is dragged away by the other mages, and Call ends up at The Magisterium with Master Rufus and his fellow apprentices Aaron and Tamara.

Call finds that the Magisterium, the masters and the apprentices are nothing like what he had been warned about.  The school is dark and frightening, but magic is interesting and absorbing. As he takes lessons and learns more about magic and his past, he’s left wondering if his father was right…or was he hiding something from Call?  Once his education in magic begins, Call is finding out there’s a lot more to Mage Magic than he expected.

iron trial audioThe audio for The Iron Trial was very well done.  I loved Paul Boehmer’s vocals; he did a great job making all the characters sound different.  From the low and deep voice of Master Rufus to the sinister hissing of the lizard fire elemental to the voices of Call and his friends, everyone sounds very different. His pacing was excellent.  The language is fun, the cast is diverse, and the plot twists around and around through both volumes of the series that I listened to.

I quite enjoyed both The Iron Trial and the sequel, The Copper Gauntlet, about Call’s second year at the Magistirium. (The other books are The Bronze Key and The Silver Mask.)  I would highly recommend them to fans of Harry Potter and Percy Jackson.  If you like books about learning magic or uncovering secrets, you will enjoy The Magisterium series.  The two authors–Holly Black and Cassandra Clare–are also authors of two other popular series for kids and teens–The Spiderwick Chronicles and The Mortal Instruments Series.  If you liked those books (or even the movies!) you’ll like The Magisterium series.

The Iron Trial and The Copper Gauntlet would be great audios for a family car trip with older elementary or middle school students.  There is quite a bit of darkness to some of Call’s past and present at the school, so it might not be good for younger elementary students.  If you managed to get through the fourth volume of Harry Potter, this is on par with darkness of The Magisterium.  But try it for yourself, and see what you think!

magisterium

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And that’s it…I have yet to read the last two volumes, so if you finish them first, come and tell me what you think!

As always, if you need help finding these or any other books in the library, ask one of our librarians.  We are always happy to help match you with your best book choices!  Until then…

Happy Reading!
::Kelly::

 

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Book & Audio Review: Flunked!

It’s time for another audio book review!  If you like fairy tales, a little bit of villainy, and a dose of magic…Flunked is a book you should like!

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Flunkedflunked
By Jen Calonita, Narrated by Kristin Condon
5 CDs, 5.25 Hours

Gilly isn’t a bad kid, but she is a thief.  It’s not like she has a real choice…she has five brothers and sisters and lives in a boot.  True, her father is a master cobbler, but there’s no longer a demand in the kingdom for shoes made by hand.  Magic slippers are all the rage.   So Gilly HAS to steal…her thievery provides extra food to keep her siblings fed and healthy.  And if she steals something special for a birthday gift here and there…well, it’s not like the stuck up royals will even notice that something is gone.  They’ll just replace it, right?

But when Gilly steals from the wrong royal, in the wrong shop, she’s found out.  And since it’s her third offense, she’s sentenced to Fairy Tale Reform School by Headmistress Flora, formerly the Evil Stepmother.  Princess Ella even signed the order.   There’s nothing Gilly or her siblings or even her parents can do about it.

But Fairy Tale Reform School — FTRS for short — isn’t anything like Gilly expected.  Sure, their mission is “To turn wicked delinquents and former villains into future heroes”, and Gilly expects to be stuck in a dungeon and fed bread and water while being lectured about being good.  But there is no dungeon (for the students anyway) and instead of being stuffed in the toe of a boot with all five siblings, Gilly has a spacious room with only one roommate, delicious and plentiful food, and classes on everything from magic to history to sports.

Of  course, Gilly doesn’t like following rules, even if they do kind of make sense.  And she wants to go home to take care of her siblings; even the promise that they can visit her doesn’t make things much better.  She does start making some friends though, and as they pool their information together about what they know about the school and how they might escape, they discover a mystery.  Who is trying to sabotage the school?   Are their lives in danger?  Gilly and her new friends Jax, Kayla and Maxine may be reluctant students of FTRS, but they will have to put their heads together and use all the somewhat illegal skills they have to get to the bottom of this mystery.

flunked trilogyThe audio recording of Flunked was  quite charming.  (heh!)   Flunked is a first-person story, so everything is relayed through Gilly.  The narrator has the perfect voice for Gilly…young, a little bit inquisitive, scrappy…and reluctantly impressed with her new surroundings.  Her voice for other characters, seen through Gilly’s eyes, are varied by accent, pacing and attitude.   Letters from Gilly to her family, notes from teachers and The Happily Ever After Scrolls–updates on the action at the school, as reported by a nosy reporter for FairyWeb- enhance the story and give an outside view of the action.

Flunked is the first of the Fairy Tale Reform School trilogy, followed by Charmed and Tricked.  I would recommend the series for kids who like an off-beat take on fairy tales, an anti-hero heroine, or just an entertaining read.  Fourth through seventh grade readers would enjoy the book, while the audio would probably work with second grade and through adults.

Some read alikes include Sarah Mlynowski’s Whatever After series, Shannon Hale’s Ever After High series, Soman Chainani’s School for Good and Evil series, and Suzanne Selfor’s Ever After High series (apparently a popular series title!)

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So pick up book, or the whole series, and enjoy!  If you like it, let us know!

As always, if you need help finding books or audio books to read, ask one of our librarians.  We’re always happy to help!

::Kelly::

5 Books Featuring…Magic Schools!

If you’re a Harry Potter fan, you’ve probably wondered about how you’d do if you went to school at Hogwarts.  But Hogwarts isn’t the only magical school in the children’s book world!  Try one of these five favorites featuring other magical schools!

In case you don’t remember, our 5 Books Featuring are five related Books–One Old, One New, One Popular with Kids, One Well-Reviewed, and One Favorite of library staff–but you’ll have to guess which is which! Each book has a short synopsis and link to the book in the catalog, so you can easily find and request it.

5 Books Featuring Magical Schools:

Black, Holly.  The Iron Trial iron trial
                               School: The Magisterium

Most people would do anything to get into the Magisterium and pass the Iron Trial. Not Callum Hunt. Call has been told his whole life that he should never trust a magician. And so he tries his best to do his worst – but fails at failing. Now he must enter the Magisterium. It’s a place that’s both sensational and sinister. And Call realizes it has dark ties to his past and a twisty path to his future. The Iron Trial is just the beginning. Call’s biggest test is still to come . . .
Find out how difficult The Magisterium is to graduate from in the sequels…The Copper Gauntlet, The Bronze Key, The Silver Mask, and (coming in 2018) The Golden Tower.

 

Blackwood, Sage.  Miss Ellicott’s School for the Magically Mindedmiss elicott's school
                                          School: Miss Ellicott’s School for Magical Maidens
Chantel would much rather focus on her magic than on curtsying, which is why she often finds herself in trouble at Miss Ellicott’s School for Magical Maidens. But when Miss Ellicott mysteriously disappears along with all the other sorceresses in the city, Chantel’s behavior becomes the least of her problems.
Without any magic protecting the city, it is up to Chantel and her friends to save the Kingdom. On a dangerous mission, Chantel will discover a crossbow-wielding boy, a dragon, and a new, fiery magic that burns inside her–but can she find the sorceresses and transform Lightning Pass into the city it was meant to be?
So far, this is a one-shot, but maybe if readers really like it, there will be a sequel..?

 

Mlynowski, Sarah.  Upside Down Magicupside down magic
School:  Dunwiddle Magic School

Nory Horace is nine years old. She’s resourceful, she’s brave, she likes peanut butter cookies. Nory’s father is the headmaster of an elite magic academy, but if Nory wants to enter fifth grade there in the fall, she’ll have to get her “wonky” magic under control. Unfortunately, Nory always turns herself into odd animal combos like a kitten and a beaver or a kitten and a dragon, and she has a hard time controlling herself in her animal form. When Nory fails Sage Academy’s Big Test, she’s sent to live with her aunt and attend  Dunwiddle Magic School, where she meets a group of kids whose magic is also…well…different.
This offbeat new series chronicles the misadventures of Nory and her oddball friends Elliot and Bax, who prove that upside-down magic definitely beats right side up.
The adventures continue for the friends in Sticks & Stones, Showing Off, and Dragon Overnight.

 

Neff, Henry.  The Hound of RowanHound_of_Rowan
School:  Rowan Academy

Max  McDaniels lives a quiet life in the suburbs of Chicago, until the day he stumbles upon a mysterious Celtic tapestry. Many strange people are interested in Max and his tapestry. His discovery leads him to Rowan Academy, a secret school where great things await him. At Rowan Academy,  young people with Potential are trained to fight an unnamed enemy.  Max and the other apprentices are housed in magically morphing rooms and assigned animal charges. Max is paired with the last lymrill in the world, a nocturnal creature with metallic quills. They train on the Course, where they experience different scenarios as they try to achieve a goal and move up levels as they progress.  But dark things are waiting, too.  When Max learns that priceless artworks and gifted children are disappearing, he finds himself in the crossfire of an ancient struggle between good and evil. To survive, he’ll have to rely on a network of agents and mystics, the genius of his roommate, and the frightening power awakening within him.
Max’s adventures continue in The Second Siege, The Fiend and the Forge, and The Maelstrom.

 

Smith, L. J.  Wren to the Rescuewren to the rescue
School:  The Magic School

All her life Wren has hoped for an adventure. Now she has one-with a kidnapped princess, a handsome prince, and a magician. What does it matter if the princess is only Tess, her best friend from the orphanage; if the prince is a youngest son with no chance of becoming king; and the magician is an apprentice? Finding herself a natural-born leader (or maybe just bossy!) Wren leads the other three over mountains and past killing spells, fighting battles along the way. But then she finds herself up against some shape-changing magic that may end her life as a human forever!
The four friends’ adventures continue in Wren’s Quest and Wren’s War.

 

Yep, Laurence.  A Dragon’s Guide to Making Your Human Smarterdragon's guide to making your human smarter
School: Spriggs Academy

Three-thousand-year-old Miss Drake has arranged to send her dear pet Winnie to The Spriggs Academy, an extraordinary school for humans and magicals alike. Winnie is particularly excited about magic class and having Sir Isaac Newton for science. She’s also making new friends–and frenemies. . . .
When a plot to snatch Winnie from her San Francisco home is uncovered, Miss Drake is ready to use all her cunning and magic to thwart it. Not that feisty Winnie needs the help. . . . As a team, the intrepid duo you first met in A Dragon’s Guide to the Care and Feeding of Humans is unstoppable!  Their third adventure is  A Dragon’s Guide to Making Perfect Wishes.

 

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Oops, that’s six!  But I don’t want to take out any of them…I guess you get a bonus book this time.  🙂  I already cut out the schools based on Grimms’ Fairy Tales.  That might be a later list…

So which of these magic schools sounds the most interesting to you?  Read them all and find out…

As always, if you would like any help finding these or any other books, ask one of our librarians for help.  We love helping you find books!

::Kelly::

 

 

Book & Audio Review: The Dragon with a Chocolate Heart

Getting ready for the holidays?  This is a great book to share with friends and family…and if you add chocolate, it’s even better!

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The Dragon with a Chocolate Heart
By Stephanie Burgis, Narrated by Jill Frutkin
8 CDs, 9.25 HoursDragon Chocolate Heart

Aventurine is the youngest member of her family…and she hates that everyone can tell her what to do, from her only-slightly-older-brother Jasper to her know-it-all older sister Citrine to Mother and all the aunts and her Grandfather Grenat.  Even though she has her own treasure hoard, she is not allowed to leave the cave or fly, since she’s too young and her wings are untested.  Worst of all, everyone believes that she’s lazy, just because she hasn’t found her Passion yet.  Every dragon has a Passion–the thing that gives their life meaning.  Jasper is interested in learning, and reads every human philosophers’s book he can get his claws on.  Perfect Citrine already has other dragons worshiping her and building her palaces for the epic poetry she writes, but Aventurine has a passion too!  It’s out there…somewhere.

But how is Aventurine supposed to find out her Passion if she’s stuck in a cave? It seems to her that if she could go out in to the world, to hunt on her own, to see humans with her own eyes, she would find her Passion, and show her family!

Escaping a dragon cave isn’t difficult when you’re a small dragon, but trying to do it secretly means scraping through some tight spaces…and during her flight, Aventurine manages to injure her wings.  Not having wings means hunting isn’t as easy as she thought, and Aventurine doesn’t like being hungry.  When she discovers a strange human, making something over a fire, she knows exactly what that means–dinner!  Aventurine pounces.  Unfortunately, her injured wings get in the way, and she puts a claw in the fire.  And that’s when she smells it…something rich, and sweet, and spicy.  Something absolutely delicious that the human is cooking over the fire!  She demands to know what it is, and the human tells her “chocolate”.  He even offers her some to drink.  Aventurine can’t resist the wonderful aroma…she drinks deeply, and the chocolate explodes within her.dragon with a chocolate heart uk

When she wakes up, Aventurine has no claws, no smoke in her throat, no wings.  Instead, she has a soft skin, strange furry stuff on her head, and cloth coverings instead of scales.  Aventurine has been changed into a human.  But she has found her Passion–Chocolate.  The human mage leaves her with the advice to get to the nearest city and find a job or apprenticeship…maybe one of the Chocolate Houses will take her.

With no idea about what it means to be human, the transformed Aventurine makes her way toward the city.  One small, puny human who used to be a dragon against the whole world.  She survived barely a day as a dragon, how will she manage to survive the human world?  Will she find a way to turn chocolate into her Passion?   What about her family?  Will they even notice, or care, that she’s gone?

That is quite a bit for one small girl to deal with, even if she is a dragon inside.   But Aventurine is not a quitter, and there’s chocolate out there, somewhere.  She just knows she can conquer one small city and find her Passion.  She’s certainly going to do her best.

 

dragon with chocolate heart audio

I loved, loved, loved The Dragon with a Chocolate Heart.  Aventurine is brave and passionate and learning so much about herself in her journey.  She has no idea what humans are like, but she doesn’t let that stop her.  The writing reminded me of Diana Wynne Jones or Jessica Day George…lots of adventure, a touch of humor, and characters who will stay with you after their story is finished.

With that said, I had some real issues with the sound recording of The Dragon with a Chocolate Heart.  When if first started, I really enjoyed the youthful, kind of scratchy voice of the narrator, and I liked the slow pacing during the first chapter, when Aventurine was a dragon.  However, when Aventurine because human and the story moved into the city I became very frustrated.  The pace stayed slow and the narration felt very much like a singsong bedtime story trying to put listeners to sleep.  I wanted a button to speed it up.  The other issue was that every character had the same voice…there were only a couple that sounded distinctly different.

So while I loved the book of The Dragon with a Chocolate Heart, I didn’t enjoy the sound recording.  That may be only me though!   But my recommendation is, if you have a choice, read the book and imagine your own voices.  I can almost guarantee, when you finish reading, you’ll want to hear more of Aventurine’s story.

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Dragons and chocolate!  Who knew they’d go so well together?  I would recommend The Dragon with a Chocolate Heart to readers in fourth through seventh grades.  If I didn’t scare you away with my assessment of the sound recording, I think it would be accessible to listeners as young as second grade, although there are a couple scary scenes.  If you’re just trying to put someone to sleep, you might be able to go even younger.

Some read-alikes you might like:
Bliss by Kathryn Littlewood
Dealing with Dragons by Patricia Wrede
A Dragon’s Guide to the Care and Feeding of Humans by Laurence Yep.
Stephanie Burgis also has a wonderful trilogy that starts with Kat, Incorrigible, that readers of The Dragon with a Chocolate Heart would enjoy as well.

As always, if you need any reading or listening suggestions, visit the library and ask one of our librarians for help.  We’re always happy to match books with readers and listeners.

Happy Reading!

::Kelly::

Audio Review: The Wishing Spell

One of the most popular series in the library these days is Chris Colfer’s series The Land of Stories.  With five fiction books, a picture book and a collection of classic fairy tales, it’s consistently one of our most requested series.  Since he last volume of the series coming out in July, it seems like the right time to seek out some answers about why.  So, when we got a new copy of the audio book, it was time to try it!

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The_Land_of_StoriesThe Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell
by Chris Colfer
Narrated by the author
8 CDs, 8.5 Hours

Alex and Conner , 11-year-old twins, have had a horrible year.  Not only was their father killed in a car accident, they’ve had to move from their beloved home to a small rental house, their mother had to sell the bookstore their father owned, and neither of them is doing well in school…for two totally different reasons.  Alex is interested in everything and always knows all the answers, so some kids are resentful, while Conner falls asleep in class because he’s not really interested in anything.  When their mother has to work a double shift on their birthday, the twins are happy that their grandmother can come for a visit and a party.

For a gift, their grandmother gives them her cherished copy of The Land of Stories…a book of fairy tales that the twins and the whole family have grown up sharing.  It’s a wonderful surprise, and something both Conner and Alex will treasure.

But when the book starts humming late one night, Alex isn’t sure what is going on.  Conner watches as his sister starts acting strangely, both at home and at school.  Alex won’t tell him what’s going on, but he knows he has to figure it out.  But he never would have guessed that the book is coming to life!

When Alex tumbles into the book–literally–Conner follows close behind.  Even if it’s dangerous, there is no way he is going to let his twin get lost in a book without him!  Upon landing, they discover that they’re in the middle of their favorite fairy tales…only nothing is quite as they remembered.  Time has passed since the stories, and the kingdoms are in crisis.  Goldilocks is a wanted fugitive, Red Riding Hood is a reclusive queen, and the Evil Queen has escaped prison to terrorize all the inhabitants.  Stories are fun to read, but maybe not so fun to live in.

When a new acquaintance tells them about a spell–a wishing spell–that might get them home, Alex and Conner are determined to find all the ingredients.  Can they travel the fairy tale kingdoms and retrieve the treasures to get them home?

wishing spell audioI quite enjoyed the audio recording of The Wishing Spell.  Chris Colfer is a delightfully flexible actor and his voices for the characters were wonderfully rich and varied.  Listening, you can hear that he had a lot of fun interpreting his characters for the audio production.  I was a little less impressed with the narrative sections; sometimes it felt like he was rushing through them to get to the voices.  Still, it was a good solid recording that is enjoyable for all ages of listeners.  If you enjoy thrilling quests, adventures with a touch of humor, and fairy tales, this series is for you!

I would recommend The Land of Stories books for kids in third through sixth grade.  I think avid fans of fairy tales would enjoy them a little earlier, and their enjoyment would last a little longer.  If you’re looking for something to listen to on a family car trip, this is a good choice.   If you’re a fan of tv shows like Once Upon a Time, or Disney fairy tale movies, this series is right up your alley!

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If you come to the library and The Land of Stories is not available, think about trying some of our other titles with similar themes: Tuesdays at the Castle by Jessica Day George, Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones, or The Sisters Grimm series by Michael Buckley are all wonderful books on CD that should also appeal to fans of Alex and Conner.  If you’re looking for books to read in print, try the Whatever After series by Sarah Mlynowski, The Hero’s Guide series by Christopher Healy or the Half Upon a Time series by James Riley.  These are all adventurous, fun series with a fairy tale background.

 

And as always, if you’re looking for help or book, media or other suggestions, ask one of our librarians.  That’s what we’re here for!

::Kelly::

Booklist: Cooking Up Some Magic!

There are several new books just out this spring that deal with magic by way of cooking.  It’s a delicious thought, isn’t it?  Find a recipe that you can follow to get some magical results!  It made me think about what other cookbook magic is out there…I remember reading a couple when I was a kid;  I think my favorites were Mrs. Coverlet’s Magicians, by Mary Nash and a bunch of different books by Ruth Chew.  Sadly, they’re no longer in print and our library doesn’t own them. (If you’re interested though, you can find used copies online.)

So if you’re a fan of cooking shows, or you’d like to have a little magic spicing up your kitchen, try one of the books on this list.  I think you’ll find them to your taste!

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Magical Cooking!

 A booklist of some magical recipes and extraordinary cooks!

is there life on a plastic planetAmes, Mildred.  Is There Life on a Plastic Planet?
Hollis is miserable with her life.  She hates her name, her mother keeps bugging her to eat healthy food, her cousin Addison makes her life miserable.  Then Hollis meets Ms. Eudora, who manages a shop that sells dolls, and serves Hollis yummy éclairs while she listens to her problems. It’s Ms. Eudora who comes up with the plan…substitute one of her dolls for Hollis, and Hollis can spend her days at the shop with Ms. Eudora and her magical éclairs.  But is it all too perfect to be real..?

this book is not good for youBosch, Pseudonymous.  This Book is Not Good for You
Between the pages of this book lies the secret to the best-tasting chocolate in all the world. I promise, your taste buds will tingle. Your palette will sing! Oh no, have I accidentally tempted you to read this book? I will warn you, however, the most delicious things are never good for you…and this story is particularly scrumptious! In this tooth-rotting adventure, Cass’s mom has been kidnapped by the evil dessert chef and chocolatier, Señor Hugo! The ransom…the legendary tuning fork. Can Cass and Max-Ernest find the magical instrument before it’s too late? Will they discover the evil secret ingredient to Señor Hugo’s chocolate success?  If you’re tempted, take a taste, but just remember…this book is not good for you.

just add magic 2Callaghan, Cindy.  Just Add Magic
Take three friends. Add an old cookbook. Combine with cute boys and a pinch of magic…and see what kind of chaos ensues! When Kelly Quinn and her two BFFs discover a dusty old cookbook while cleaning out the attic, the girls decide to try a few of the mysterious and supposedly magical recipes that are inside. To their surprise, the Keep ’Em Quiet Cobbler actually silences Kelly’s pesky little brother and the Hexberry Tart puts a curse on mean girl Charlotte. Is it possible that the recipes really are magic? Who wrote them and where did they come from? And most importantly of all, when boys get involved, what kind of trouble are the girls stirring up for themselves?

chocolate touchCatling, Robert.  The Chocolate Touch
John Midas loves chocolate. He thinks chocolate is better than any other food! But when John finds an odd coin, he buys a tiny piece of chocolate at an odd little shop.  It’s the most chocolaty chocolate he has ever tasted. The next morning, John discovers that everything that touches his lips turns into chocolate—rich, sweet, smooth chocolate. Toothpaste tubes squirt chocolate. Water fountains at school spout streams of chocolate. This is a dream come true! But even greedy John finds that too much of a good thing can quickly turn from a dream into a nightmare—especially when he kisses his mother and turns her into a chocolate statue. Is there anything John can do to reverse this horror?

chocolate meltdownConnor, Lexi.  The Chocolate Meltdown 
Eleven year-old Beatrix, B for short, is a witch with a quirky talent. When she spells out words, magic spells take shape!  B’s dad’s job at Enchanted Chocolates has always been a great thing — who doesn’t like free candy and special tours of a chocolate factory? But when something goes wrong with the new batch of treats, there’s nothing sweet about it! Everyone seems to be losing their magic touch — can B whip up a solution, or could this spell the E-N-D of witches?

ice cream heroesCorbalis, Judy.  The Ice Cream Heroes
Oskar’s mother is a famous mountaineer, off on a trip to explore the Himalayas.  When he discovers that she’s forgotten her favorite ice pick, Oskar and his new friend Henrietta (a girl who wears a gorilla costume because of her job delivering gorillagrams) set off  to deliver it to her in person. Along the way they meet a tribe of abominable snowmen; are held captive in a palace made of magically flavored ice cream by the henchmen of The Controller, a demonic thief with a cohort of mad scientists; and meet the Great Khone, an ice cream maker searching for the world’s stolen ice cream supply.

great custard pie panicCorbett, Scott.  The Great Custard Pie Panic
On a walk through the fog Nick and his dog discover a wonderful bakery that makes magical pies.  Unfortunately, the owner turns out to be his archenemy, the evil magician Dr. Merlin! (Early Chapter Book)

lemonade trickCorbett, Scoll.  The Lemonade Trick
A mysterious potion mixed by Kerby with his chemistry set has a beneficial effect on the neighborhood bully but also wreaks havoc at the Sunday School pageant.  Try the rest of the series too…Kerby’s chemistry set has quite a few magical recipes in it!

charlie and the chocolate factoryDahl, Roald.  Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Willy Wonka’s famous chocolate factory is opening at last!  But only five lucky children will be allowed inside.  All they have to do is find the golden ticket.  And the winners are: Augustus Gloop, an enormously fat boy whose hobby is eating; Veruca Salt, a spoiled-rotten brat whose parents are wrapped around her little finger; Violet Beauregarde, a dim-witted gum-chewer with the fastest jaws around; Mike Teavee, a toy pistol-toting gangster-in-training who is obsessed with television; and Charlie Bucket, Our Hero, a boy who is honest and kind, brave and true, and good and ready for the wildest time of his life!  As he tours the magical candy factory, what will Charlie find there?

george's marvelous medicineDahl, Roald.  George’s Marvelous Medicine
George is alone in the house with Grandma. The most horrid, grizzly old grunion of a grandma ever. She needs something stronger than her usual medicine to cure her grouchiness. A special grandma medicine, a remedy for everything. And George knows just what to put into it. Grandma’s in for the surprise of her life—and so is George, when he sees the results of his mixture! George decides that his grumpy, selfish old grandmother must be a witch and cooks up some marvelous medicine to take care of her.  (Early Chapter Book)

truth cookie 2Dunbar, Fiona.  The Truth Cookie
Lulu Baker’s dad is getting ready to marry his new girlfriend, world-famous model Varaminta le Bone. Everyone thinks Varaminta is fabulous. Everyone, that is, except Lulu. She knows that her stepmother-to-be, not to mention her awful son Torquil, is cruel, deceitful, and just using her father. But how can she make her dad see Varaminta and Torquil for who they really are? When a magical recipe book called The Apple Star finds its way into Lulu’s hands, she finds that some very unusual ingredients and some help from her friends just might do the trick.

tangle of knotsGraff, Lisa.  A Tangle of Knots
In a slightly magical world where everyone has a Talent, eleven-year-old Cady is an orphan with a phenomenal Talent for cake baking. But little does she know that fate has set her on a journey from the moment she was born.  And her destiny leads her to a mysterious address that houses a lost luggage emporium, an old recipe, a family of children searching for their own Talents, and a Talent Thief who will alter her life forever.  However, these encounters hold the key to Cady’s past and how she became an orphan.  If she’s lucky, fate may reunite her with her long-lost parent!

magic cake shopHashimoto, Meika.  The Magic Cake Shop
Emma Burblee couldn’t be more different from her parents if she tried. She’d rather dig for treasure in a park than try the latest fashions or discuss their favorite subject: themselves. When Emma mortifies her parents, her punishment is to spend the summer with her Uncle Simon—a loathsome man with a huge appetite for food and get-rich-quick schemes.  Although Emma’s days revolve around cooking and cleaning, there is one bright spot. Her uncle’s sweet tooth means she gets to visit the town bakery, Mr. Crackle’s Cake Shop, all the time. Mr. Crackle is as charming and kind as Uncle Simon is vile. But then Emma discovers a plot by Uncle Simon; he has set his sights on ruining Mr. Crackle and the entire dessert making industry!  Can Emma stop their evil plan?

circle of doomKennemore, Tim. Circle of Doom
One day, Lizzie Sharp decides to concoct a potion to cast a spell on her family’s only neighbors, the unbearable, ancient Potwards. The very next day, Mrs. Potward breaks her hip and the couple disappear forever. It could be just a coincidence, but Lizzie is convinced of her own magical powers, and the temptation to involve both her younger brothers in her ambitious spellmaking plans is irresistible. As one potion leads to another, all three Sharp children become ridiculously entangled in a web of secrets, conspiracies, and misunderstandings.

jennifer hecate macbeth william mckinley and me elizabethKonigsburg, E. L.  Jennifer, Hecate, Macbeth, William McKinley, and Me, Elizabeth
Elizabeth is an only child, new in town, and the shortest kid in her class. She’s also pretty lonely, until she meets Jennifer. Jennifer is… different. She’s read Macbeth. She never wears jeans or shorts. She never says “please” or “thank you.” And she says she is a witch. It’s not always easy being friends with a witch, but it’s never boring. At first an apprentice and then a journeyman witch, Elizabeth learns to eat raw ends and how to cast small spells. And she and Jennifer collaborate on cooking up an ointment that will enable them to fly. That’s when a marvelous toad, Hilary Ezra, enters their lives. And that’s when trouble starts to brew.

karma bitesKramer, Stacy.  Karma Bites
Life seems to have it in for Franny Flanders. Her best friends aren’t speaking, her parents just divorced, and her hippie grandmother has moved in. The only karma Franny’s got is bad karma. Then Franny gets her hands on a box of magic recipes that could fix all of her problems. It could even change the world! Finally, life is looking up. But Franny is about to learn that magic and karma aren’t to be played with. When you mess with the universe, it can bite back in unexpected ways. Ouch!

magic puddingLindsay, Norman.  The Magic Pudding
The Magic Pudding is a pie, except when it’s something else, like a steak, or a jam donut, or an apple dumpling, or whatever its owner wants it to be. And it never runs out. It’s magic!  No matter how many slices you cut, there’s always something left over.  But the Magic Pudding is also alive. It walks and it talks and it has a personality like no other. A meaner, sulkier, snider, snarlinger Pudding you’ve never met. So Bunyip Bluegum (the koala bear) finds out when he joins Barnacle Bill (the sailor) and Sam Sawnoff (the penguin bold) as members of the Noble Society of Pudding Owners .  This madcap childhood classic recounts the adventures of the three friends as they defend the pudding from thieves.

blissLittlewood, Kathryn.  Bliss
Rosemary Bliss’s family has a secret. It’s the Bliss Cookery Booke—an ancient, leather-bound volume of enchanted recipes like Stone Sleep Snickerdoodles and Singing Gingersnaps. Rose and her siblings are supposed to keep the Cookery Booke under lock and whisk-shaped key while their parents are out of town, but then a mysterious stranger shows up. Aunt Lily rides a motorcycle, wears purple sequins, and whips up exotic (but delicious) dishes for dinner. Soon boring, non-magical recipes feel like life before Aunt Lily—a lot less fun.  So Rose and her siblings experiment with just a couple of recipes from the forbidden Cookery Booke.  A few Love Muffins and  Cookies of Truth couldn’t cause too much trouble . . . could they?

dash of magicLittlewood, Kathryn.  A Dash of Magic
Rosemary will do anything to get back her family’s magical Cookery Booke, even challenging Aunt Lily to an international baking competition in Paris.  If Rose wins, Lily will return the Cookery Booke that she stole. If Rose loses . . . well, the consequences are too ugly to think about. But Lily isn’t playing fair—she’s using a magical ingredient to cheat. The only way for Rose to compete is for her to find magical ingredients of her own.  Together with her long-lost grandpa, his sarcastic talking cat, and a turncoat French mouse, Rose and her brothers race around Paris to find the magical ingredients that will help her outbake—and outmagic—her conniving aunt.  She has to win or the Bliss Cookery Booke will be lost to her family forever.

sinister sweetness of splendid academy 2Loftin, Nikki.  The Sinister Sweetness of Splendid Academy
Lorelei is bowled over by Splendid Academy—Principal Trapp encourages the students to run in the hallways, the classrooms are stocked with candy dishes, and the cafeteria serves lavish meals featuring all Lorelei’s favorite foods. But the more time she spends at school, the more suspicious she becomes. Why are her classmates growing so chubby? And why do the teachers seem so sinister?  It’s up to Lorelei and her new friend Andrew to figure out what secret this supposedly splendid school is hiding. What they discover chills their bones—and might even pick them clean!  Mix one part magic, one part mystery, and just a dash of Grimm, and you’ve got the recipe for a cozy-creepy read that kids will gobble up like candy.

power of poppy pendleLowe, Natasha.  The Power of Poppy Pendle
Ten-year-old Poppy, born to ordinary parents, inherits her famous Great Aunt Mabel’s genes—GAM was a famous witch. In Poppy’s world, witches work for good and are much valued, with powers both coveted and praised. But Poppy does not want to be a witch—she wants to be a baker, and she is extremely good at baking. Her parents insist Poppy follow in the footsteps of her great aunt, but Poppy has plans of her own.  Part magic, part adventure, and wholly delicious, this spirited story includes more than a dozen recipes readers—and budding bakers—can try at home.

cake  love, chickens and a taste of peculiarMagnin, Joyce.  Cake:  Love, Chickens and a Taste of Peculiar
Wilma Sue seems destined to go from one foster home to the next—until she is sent to live with sisters and missionaries, Ruth and Naomi. Do they really care about Wilma Sue, or are they just looking for someone to help raise chickens and bake cakes?  As Wilma Sue adjusts to her new surroundings and helps deliver ‘special’ cakes, she realizes there’s something strange going on.  On her search  for secret ingredients, she makes a new friend, Penny.  When Penny and her mother hit a rough patch, Naomi decides to make her own version of cake—with disastrous results. Then tragedy strikes the chickens, and all fingers point to Wilma Sue—just when she was starting to believe she could at last find a permanent home with Ruth and Naomi. Will the sisters turn her out, or will she discover what it feels like to be truly loved?

witch's guide to cooking with childrenMcGowan, Keith.  The Witch’s Guide to Cooking with Children
When Sol and Connie Blink move to Grand Creek, one of the first people to welcome them is an odd older woman, Fay Holaderry, and her friendly dog, Swift, who carries a very strange bone in his mouth. Sol knows a lot more than the average eleven-year-old, so when he identifies the bone as a human femur, he and Connie begin to wonder if their new neighbor is up to no good.  In a spine-tingling adventure that makes them think twice about who they can trust, Sol and Connie discover that dangerous secrets lurk in even the most pleasant neighborhoods.

witch's curseMcGowan, Keith.  The Witch’s Curse
A shadowy witch, a cursed hunter—it’s tricky business for Sol and Connie as they face off against this awful pair. The kids narrowly averted being eaten by the last witch after them, and this time it doesn’t look any better. It’s a long way through the accursed valley, they’re running out of food and water, and that lodge on the mountain side with the collection of animals inside isn’t exactly comforting. Who can save them? The All Creatures Manager? A heroic woodthrush? The Camper Lady? The Know-It-All Cube? Or will they have to save themselves? And here’s the worst of it: little do Sol and Connie know that the ancient child hunter is about to wake up—thanks to the witch’s curse.

candy shop warMull, Brandon.  The Candy Shop War
Welcome to the Sweet Tooth Ice Cream and Candy Shoppe, where the confections are bit on the . . . unusual side. Rock candy that makes you weightless. Jawbreakers that make you unbreakable. Chocolate balls that make you a master of disguise.  Nate, Summer, Trevor, and Pigeon meet the grandmotherly Mrs. White, owner of the Sweet Tooth, and soon learn about the magical side effects of her candies. Then the ice cream truck driver, Mr. Stott, arrives with a few enchanted sweets of his own. The danger unfolds as the kids discover that the magical strangers have all come to town in search of a legendary treasure—one that could be used for great evil if it fell into the wrong hands. The kids, now in over their heads, must try to retrieve the treasure first. And so, the war begins . . .

arcade catastropheMull, Brandon.  Arcade Catastrophe
In the sequel to The Candy Shop War, Nate and his friends meet Mrs. White’s brother Mr. White, who owns Arcadeland, a local amusement center. At Arcadeland, kids can play games and earn thousands of tickets, which are redeemable for one of four kinds of stamps jets, tanks, subs, and race cars. Could it be true that these stamps allow kids to fly through the air? Or breathe underwater? Or run faster than a car? But Mr. White is hiding a secret: when all four clubs are filled, he will be able to retrieve perhaps the most powerful talisman ever. For Nate and his friends, it will take more than candy to fight and win this war!

magic mistakesRyan, Margaret.  Magic Mistakes!
It’s the start of the autumn school semester and the fairies are learning a new subject—cooking! Who can make the best pudding? Airy Fairy is determined to do well in cooking class, but with Scary Fairy around to stir up trouble, things are bound to go wrong once again.  Airy Fairy might be the clumsiest, most messy little fairy in town. Her wand is bent, her wings are patched with bandages, and her magic spells have a way of going wrong. Even so, she’s a lovable little fairy whose adventures have quickly become favorites among young readers.

m for mischiefParker, Richard.  M for Mischief
When they move into a new house, Andrew, Milly and Peg find a little round structure in the garden, complete with a stove inside.  The stove looks like a normal one, except for the strange “M” on the dial.  And then there’s the “Magical Cook Book” they find with the stove.  Could it really be true?  Andrew and his sisters can hardly wait to try it. Carefully, they set the stove dial to M. Then Andrew cooks an egg and eats it, following the directions.  He can see himself perfectly fine though.  But his sisters can’t.  Andrew has disappeared!  Now they have a magic stove and a whole book of spells to try.  Can they keep their stove secret and keep out of trouble?

van gogh cafeRylant, Cynthia.  The Van Gogh Café
At the Van Gogh Cafe, anything can happen. Clara’s dad owns the cafe, and she’s seen it all—from food that cooks by itself to poems that foretell the future. This award-winning collection of vignettes by Newbery medalist Cynthia Rylant is a treat to be relished. So bring your appetite for the unexpected, because at the Van Gogh Cafe, your order of tea and toast comes with a side of magic!  The Van Gogh Cafe, located in Flowers, Kansas, has magic in its walls, causing strange and mysterious events to occur there.

whizz pop chocolate shopSaunders, Kate.  The Whizz Pop Chocolate Shop
Welcome to the most magical house in London.   The family of eleven-year-old twins Oz and Lily have inherited it, together with the mysterious shop downstairs. Long ago, the shop’s famous chocolate-makers, who also happen to be Oz and Lily’s great uncles, were clever sorcerers. Now evil villains are hunting for the secret of their greatest recipe. The terrifying powers of this magic chocolate have the ability to destroy the world.   Soon, Oz and Lily are swept into a thrilling battle, helped by an invisible cat, a talking rat, and the ghost of an elephant. It’s up to them to stop the villians and keep the magical chocolate recipe out of harm’s way. Their family and the world depends on it.

chocolate feverSmith, Robert Kimmel.  Chocolate Fever
Henry Green is a boy who loves chocolate. He likes it bitter, sweet, dark, light, and daily; for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks; in cakes, candy bars, milk, and every other form you can possibly imagine. Henry probably loves chocolate more than any boy in the history of the world. One day, Henry finds that strange things are happening to him. First he makes medical history with the only case of Chocolate Fever ever–Henry breaks out in brown bumps which cause a series of events ending in a hijacking and a realization about chocolate and family.

mary poppins in the kitchenTravers, P. L.  Mary Poppins in the Kitchen
Get a unique glimpse at the famous Poppins cast as the spit-spot English nanny and the Banks children take over the kitchen for a week. With the help of familiar visitors like the Bird Woman, Admiral Boom, and Mr. and Mrs. Turvy, Mary Poppins teaches her irrepressible young charges the basics of cooking, from A to Z. And young readers can re-create the week’s menus by following the thirty different recipes. Kitchen adventures were never so much fun!

pieWeeks, Sarah.  Pie
When Alice’s Aunt Polly, the Pie Queen of Ipswitch, passes away, she takes with her the secret to her world-famous pie-crust recipe. Or does she? In her will, Polly leaves the recipe to her extraordinarily fat, remarkably disagreeable cat, Lardo . . . and then leaves Lardo in the care of Alice.  Suddenly, the whole town is wondering how you leave a recipe to a cat. Everyone wants to be the next big pie-contest winner, and it’s making them pie-crazy. It’s up to Alice and her friend Charlie to put the pieces together and discover the not-so-secret recipe for happiness: Friendship. Family. And the pleasure of donig something for the right reason.

sorcery and ceceliaWrede, Particia.  Sorcery & Cecelia: Or the Enchanted Chocolate Pot
Cousins Kate and Cecelia have always been inseparable. But in 1817, as they approach adulthood, they are forced to spend a summer apart. As Cecelia fights boredom in her small country town, Kate visits London to mingle with English society. At the initiation of a magician into the Royal College of Wizards, Kate finds herself alone with a mysterious witch who offers her a sip from a chocolate pot. Kate refuses the drink and the witch disappears as chocolate burns through her dress. Strange forces convene to destroy a beloved wizard, and only Kate and Cecelia can stop the plot. But for two girls who have to contend with the pressures of choosing dresses and beaux for their debuts, deadly magic is only one of their concerns.

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As it turns out, magical cookery books seem to be very popular!  Most of these titles were out when I made this post.  If you’d like to place a book on hold in the Minuteman system, simply click on the title link and you’ll find yourself on that page of our catalog.  Just place a Hold Request from there!

Enjoy!  And if YOU find a mysterious magical cookbook, please bring it in and share with our staff!  Everyone here would like a turn at some cooking magic!  🙂

::Kelly::

Booklist: Double (or Triple!) the Trouble – Fantasy stories!

Continuing our booklist on twins, triplets and other multiples…this time with a Fantasy twist!

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Double (or Triple!) the Trouble Family Stories:
Twins, Triplets, Quadruplets…

FANTASY STYLE

Hollow Earth by John Barrowman and Carole E. Barrowman

hollow earthLots of twins have a special connection, but twelve-year-old Matt and Emily Calder can do way more than finish each other’s sentences. Together, they are able to bring art to life and enter paintings at will. Their extraordinary abilities are highly sought after, particularly by a secret group who want to access the terrors called Hollow Earth. All the demons, devils, and evil creatures ever imagined are trapped for eternity in the world of Hollow Earth—trapped unless special powers release them. The twins flee from London to a remote island off the west coast of Scotland in hopes of escaping their pursuers and gaining the protection of their grandfather, who has powers of his own. But the villains will stop at nothing to find Hollow Earth and harness the powers within. With so much at stake, nowhere is safe—and survival might be a fantasy.

First Hero by Adam Blade

first heroAt the age of seven, Tanner’s father was killed in front of him by the evil warlord Derthsin. But his father’s death was not in vain and Derthsin was carried away to his doom by a good Beast, Firepos the Flame Bird. Now, eight years later, another evil army is wreaking havoc across Avantia. But Tanner has been training with Firepos, waiting to avenge his father’s death. There is something familiar about this new menace, who rides with a Beast of his own. The evil army is after the pieces of the Mask of Death–which allows whoever wears it to control all Beasts. Tanner sets off on a journey to stop them. Along the way, he encounters twins Gwen and Geffen, who hold the map to finding the remaining pieces. Check out #2 (Chasing Evil) and #3 (Call to War) in the series!

Doctor Illuminatus by Martin Booth

doctor illuminatusWhen a family moves to an old English country estate, Sebastian, the son of an alchemist, is accidentally awakened from a centuries-long sleep. The evil enemy of Sebastian’s father has also been awakened and continues to pursue his sinister plan.
Check out Part II: Soul stealer.

 

The Land of Stories: the Wishing Spell by Chris Colfer

land of storiesAlex and Conner Bailey’s world is about to change, in this fast-paced adventure that uniquely combines our modern day world with the enchanting realm of classic fairy tales. The Land of Stories tells the tale of twins Alex and Conner. Through the mysterious powers of a cherished book of stories, they leave their world behind and find themselves in a foreign land full of wonder and magic where they come face-to-face with the fairy tale characters they grew up reading about. But after a series of encounters with witches, wolves, goblins, and trolls, getting back home is going to be harder than they thought.

Witch Twins and the Ghost of Glenn Bly by Adele Griffin

witch twins and the ghost of glenn blyClaire and Luna are thrilled to visit an ancient castle in Scotland with their five-star-witch grandmother, Grandy. But this is no ordinary vacation. The three witches are on a mission: to rid Glenn Bly castle of the terrifying ghost that haunts it. The situation at Glenn Bly is more complicated than the twins had imagined. There’s prickly Daphne, who lives with her grandfather in the castle and seems to be hiding something. There are the awful Shrillingbirds, the absentee landlords who now want to make Glenn Bly their permanent home. Finally, there is the ghost himself. And when Claire and Luna meet him, the real mystery begins. The twins turn ghost-busters in this fourth magically funny book in the Witch Twins series about these novice witches.

 

Otto and the Flying Twins by Charlotte Haptie

otto and the flying twinsIt is the spring following the events in Otto and the Flying Twins, and Otto’s world is still strangely unpredictable: the Karmidee still an underclass of ‘magicos’, his parents at odds, and the twins still unable to fly free. And the City of Trees is in the grip of something strange – with the approach of spring, when there should be warmer weather, carnivals and celebration, there is instead increasing cold, snow, bitter blizzards, a frightening upside-down world of ice. Once again, the Karmidee are blamed. But if they ever knew how to control the weather, they have long ago forgotten. Otto and Mab must help to find the answer. Otto encounters the legendary Wool Bandits, helps a miniature family with a dangerous secret and, together with new and extraordinary friends, must challenge the ancient powers of the sinister Bird Charmers. Read the next books in the series: Otto and the Bird Charmers and Otto in the Time of the Warrior.

The Akhenaten Adventure by P.B. Kerr

A251SchAkhenaten_0.tifMeet John and Philippa Gaunt, twelve-year-old twins who one day discover themselves to be descended from a long line of djinn. All of a sudden, they have the power to grant wishes, travel to extraordinary places, and make people and objects disappear. Luckily, the twins are introduced to their eccentric djinn-uncle Nimrod, who will teach them how to harness their newly found power. And not a moment too soon . . . since John and Philippa are about to embark on a search to locate a monstrous pharaoh named Akhenaten and his eerie tomb. Read all seven books in the Children of the Lamp series!

Flip by David Lubar

flipIf you could become anyone in the world, who would you be? Did you ever wish you could be anyone else but who you are? Twins Ryan and Taylor do it all the time. Now their dream is about to come true. They’ve discovered mysterious alien disks that allow they to “flip”–to become legendary heroes from the past. But who?

 

 

The Unwanteds by Lisa McMann

unwantedsWhen Alex finds out he is Unwanted, he expects to die. That is the way of the people of Quill. Each year, all the thirteen-year-olds are labeled as Wanted, Necessary, or Unwanted. Wanteds get more schooling and train to join the Quillitary. Necessaries keep the farms running. Unwanteds are set for elimination. It’s hard for Alex to leave behind his twin, Aaron, a Wanted, but he makes peace with his fate—until he discovers that instead of a “death farm,” what awaits him is a magical place called Artimé. There, Alex and his fellow Unwanteds are encouraged to cultivate their creative abilities and use them magically. Everything Alex has ever known changes before his eyes, and it’s a wondrous transformation. But it’s a rare, unique occurrence for twins to be divided between Wanted and Unwanted, and as Alex and Aaron’s bond stretches across their separation, a threat arises for the survival of Artimé that will pit brother against brother in an ultimate magical battle. Check out book #2: Island of Silence.

Facing the hunchback of Notre Dame by L. L. Samson

facing the hunchback of notre dameA hidden attic. A classic story. A very unexpected twist. Twin twelve-year-old bookworms Ophelia and Linus Easterday discover a hidden attic that once belonged to a mad scientist. While relaxing in the attic and enjoying her latest book, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Ophelia dozes off, and within moments finds herself facing a fully alive and completely bewildered Quasimodo. Ophelia and Linus team up with a clever neighbor, a hippy priest, and a college custodian, learning Quasimodo’s story while searching for some way to get him back home—if he can survive long enough in the modern world. Read the next two books in the series: Saving Moby Dick and Dueling with the Three Musketeers.

The Alchemyst: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel by Michael Scott

alchemystThe legend: Nicholas Flamel lives. But only because he has been making the elixir of life for centuries. The secret of eternal life is hidden within the book he protects—the Book of Abraham the Mage. It’s the most powerful book that has ever existed. In the wrong hands, it will destroy the world. That’s exactly what Dr. John Dee plans to do when he steals it. Humankind won’t know what’s happening until it’s too late. And if the prophecy is right, Sophie and Josh Newman are the only ones with the power to save the world as we know it. Sometimes legends are true. And Sophie and Josh Newman are about to find themselves in the middle of the greatest legend of all time. Read all of the books in The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel series!

The Storm Makers by Jennifer E. Smith

storm makersWhat starts as an ordinary summer turns exciting and perilous for twins Ruby and Simon when strange occurrences begin happening on their farm — sudden gusts of wind, rainstorms, and even tornado warnings — that seem eerily timed to Simon’s emotions. Then a stranger arrives and tells the twins that Simon is a Storm Maker — part of a clandestine group of people entrusted with controlling and taming the weather — and that he is in great danger. Soon Simon and Ruby must race against the clock as they try to master Simon’s powers in time to stop a rogue Storm Maker’s treacherous — and potentially deadly — plans.

Troubletwisters by Garth Nix and Sean Williams

TroubletwistersJaide and Jack Shield’s lives are changing in a very, very strange way. The weather is turning against them. Magical disasters occur when they’re around. And a mysterious explosion has just destroyed their house…from the inside. Without knowing why, the twins are stolen away to live with Grandma X–a relative they’ve never, ever met. At Grandma X’s house, things are even stranger. Weather vanes point in the opposite direction of the wind. Doors appear and disappear. Cats talk. Read book 2: The Monster!

Thirteenth Child by Patricia C. Wrede

thirteenth childEff was born a thirteenth child. Her twin brother, Lan, is the seventh son of a seventh son. This means he’s supposed to possess amazing talent — and she’s supposed to bring only bad things to her family and her town. Undeterred, her family moves to the frontier, where her father will be a professor of magic at a school perilously close to the magical divide that separates settlers from the beasts of the wild. Read #2 (Across the Great Barrier) and #3 (The Far West) in the series!

 Booklist by Julie G!

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Hmm.  In Fantasy stories, multiples always seem to be twins. There’s not a triplet or quadruplet in the bunch!  Maybe that’s a book that someone should write…

Next up: Twins, triplets and more in Science Fiction.  (I’m thinking that’s going to be doubles too.)

::Kelly::