Saturday, April 4, 2015

Archie Greene and the Magician's Secret by D. D. Everest

It's Archie's twelfth birthday and he's not expecting any packages.  When one is delivered by some strange delivery company, he's anxious to see what it is but won't open it until his Grandmother has approved.  She's not happy about this surprise, but she has an anticipation about what the surprise may be...

HarperCollins and Edelweiss gave me the opportunity to read this book (thank you).  It will be published April 21st and you'll want to grab a copy then.

This is written for middle graders and it's full of all kinds of magic and strange characters.  There are even some monsters for you.  If that's not enough to catch your young ones attention, in the very first chapter the mother makes a chocolate cake with blueberry frosting and a sardine center.  That made my eyes pop open wider!

Archie is from a long line of magicians, but his parents died while he was very small and he doesn't know this.  His Grandmother was sworn to silence until his twelfth birthday, so it's all a surprise to him.  Especially when she sends him on his way to a bookstore in the center of town with his book.  He also gets to stay with relatives he's never seen before (and that lovely cake is for him).

The story has a lot of action, a lot of strange stuff is going on, and while Archie thinks the book he got is good, it's really bad.  Archie is generally confused but he's making friends with his cousina.  And he's learning at the bookstore.  It's just not enough soon enough.

When he learns he can listen to the books' whispers, it gets even more dangerous.  Nobody has been able to do that for three or four hundred years and now he can.  But he can't admit it.

The best part of the story for me was the ending.  When forces from the past come back to life, Archie has to learn how to use the riddles he's found to defeat them.  It also takes one secret weapon that you would never expect.  I liked this one a lot!  Give it read and see what you think.

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