Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Magical Mischief - Anna Dale

Mr Hardbattle has a problem, his bookshop is inhabited by magic.

Magic can be very inconvenient, particularly when a step on the stairs regularly turns to custard. And magic gives off a mighty whiff, the result of which is that Mr Hardbattle's customers have flooded out the door and have not returned.

When he receives a notice that his rent is to be increased Mr Hardbattle doesn't know what to do but the wind and rain blow Arthur and Miss Quint into his shop and Mr Hardbattle is forced to reveal his secret. The three set out to find a new home for the magic but things take a serious turn when Mr Hardbattle leaves Arthur and Miss Quint in charge whilst he scouts possible locations for magic's relocation. But Miss Quint is lonely and starts making wishes.

Have you ever heard the saying 'Beware what you wish for!'

Wishes are dangerous things, particularly when you are in a magic bookshop.

This wonderful book for 9 - 11 year olds is a real treat to read with some great characters - both real and magic - and one disaster after another. With a silly spinster and a sensible Arthur, children will delight in the role reversal of the principle characters and the madcap ending. Also a great bedtime read for those not yet ready for a independent reading of a book of this length.

As I was reading (and as the book deals with magic) comparisons with that other children's contemporary magic series Harry Potter are inevitable. Personally I couldn't read the Potter books but Magical Mischief I read with a smile on my face and enjoyed every madcap minute of.

And yes working in a bookshop is a lovely job. Is our shop full of magic?

Well, if you look really hard in the corners and open some of the books, you never know what you will find!

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