This series about a very special pet shop where magic can, and does happen. It is the purrfect read for animal fans.
We haven't read of the Animal Magic series and I hadn't even heard of it so was looking forward to trying a slightly different genre to what Miss Seven is currently reading. She has a reading age of a ten year old so I thought that this book, with a recommended reading age of 8 plus, would be readable for her. However she took one quick flick through and declared it too difficult because it didn't have any pictures and refused to read it.
I read it and then one evening curled up with her and read it to her. Because it had no pictures (she loves little pencil sketches in her books still) she declared that I could read and she would listen and that worked for her. The first few chapters we had to persevere with as it was a little difficult for her to figure out the story. This book is number 5 in the series and I imagine that this series is best read from the start even though each book is able to be read independently of the others.
I love the descriptive writing used in this book and very quickly was able to visualise the characters. This descriptive writing is great for Miss Seven to read as well as this is the level of writing that she should be working towards this year. The story itself (because we haven't read the earlier books) was a bit of a mystery story until we found out who was who and what had happened to the main character Lottie's father. I enjoyed the mystery and love that the animals talk and its all a bit magical. This is the type of book I would have adored at my daughters age. I think it is good value for money as it is a good complex story with an interesting plot. I would recommend this book for your eight year old plus or almost eight year old but would probably recommend that you get the whole series. I imagine that the preceding books are really good also and it would be a good series to read chronologically. There is a little teaser of the next in the series PonyMagic (which is followed by Mousemagic) which is enough to have had Miss Seven wanting to read that so I think this a series that we will now try to follow.
We have just finished reading Bird Magic this evening. It was a pretty involved novel for $12. I must admit, I had no idea what to expect when we got it. My daughter just loved the grey parrot on the front of the book (the cover art is a bit different to what is displayed here). When I started to read this to her the other night, we realised it was long to be a much longer read than anticipated. Also we noticed that we were mid way into a series of books and so we had somewhat missed how things had started.
Actually the fact that this is a ways through the series didn't matter too much. The author catches you up pretty well. There is some stuff that she kind of expects you to know, but by the same token I think you get to understand who is who and what's what easily. The book itself is a bit of a slow starter. It seemed to take ages to get through the first few chapters.
However, that is made up for later on, when things get very exciting. There is some cool magic scenes and the bird's character finally starts to really matter to the plot. Prior to the middle of the book, he is there but isn't really the main attraction. It would be fair to say that the book didn't hold our attention too well, but my daughter seemed to enjoy listening - especially to the bird magic. It would probably suit an older child. If you are already a fan of the series, it would be a great one to get as there are some reveals.
Random listing from 'Books'...
The Jade Emperor has declared a great race: the first animals to cross the river will win a place in the Chinese Zodiac.
Thirteen animals line up along the shore, but there are only twelve places to be won. Who will miss out?
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