If you look at my regular blog from time to time, maybe you've noticed the little Shelfari widget on the side? I read. Lots. Or try to. I am literally always in the middle of one or two books (usually two, one audio book with the kids, one paper or ebook on my own.)
I write reviews on Shelfari's site of the books I read, and wanted to store some here for some of my more favorite titles, and just so I can find things a bit more easily. This whole "create content on the internet" thing is great, but it leaves me feeling stretched.
At any rate - I was thrilled to discover the latest book in the Magic Thief series, hadn't know one was coming out! The good kind of surprise, since when I found out it was coming out it had already been published, I hate waiting for books. My then-7-year-old and I burned through the first book in this series last summer (we each read it in about a day and a half. We also both LOVED it.) We read the second book not long after (which was excellent, but not quite as good as the first.)
This third book is right on par with the first (I think it's the setting more than anything. Wellmet is a better setting than the travel to and from Desh, where the second book took place.) I highly recommend this author and this series, hope you'll consider reading it. We got so inspired by reading the book that we're going back and listening to the first book on audio! (not loving the voice talent, he's a bit of a projector, but it's fun to "read" the book in another manner.)
Magic Thief: Found by Sarah Prineas, book review by Karen T. Smith
I absolutely adore the Magic Thief books. I love the way this author writes. "quick hands!" and I love the character voice of Conn. He's plucky and realistic about what happens to him. He's not without an inner life of his own, but it's a change from a lot of other middle-grade books, he's not a whiner, never complains about his lot in life, just deals with it as things come along. As a result, I feel that the readers get a really good sense of what this character is like, to the point where we can anticipate his actions before they've happened.
In this book, Conn and Nevery are back in Wellmet even though Conn really shouldn't be there (banished and all.) Conn still doesn't have a locus magicalicus, which is causing some issues. He and Nevery eventually perform a finding spell, which causes some ruckus, and he goes off to find his stone, which takes a good 1/3 to 1/2 of the story. As always, he's hungry and determined, and interesting things happen to him.
This is a great book (start with the first) for somewhat reluctant readers or boys in that 8-12 (or older...I'm a non-boy much older than 12 and I really love these books) age range. The book is a little smaller than typical hardbacks, and the pages use whitespace effectively, with illustrations at chapter headings to make that first page of the chapter go quickly. As before, letters and journal entries are done in a different style of paper with a different font. These help break up chapters and are visually different enough than the rest of the story to stand out.
Reluctant readers might identify well with Conn and his plucky determination. Boys will certainly identify with him, though as mentioned, so will girls. The character is somewhat ageless as in book 1 he doesn't really know how old he is, but you get the feeling that he's about 11 or 12, scruffy and small still, on the wrong end of the growth spurt that will surely come.
Excellent book - you should read this one!