Though Fidelou and his crew of biker werewolf minions add some dramatic distraction, it is Nick's evolution into a young wizard that commands attention. Readers journey with Nick as he stumbles through what was real in his world, his grief at losing his mother, into a magical world that gives him a sense of purpose. Fans of fantasy will be captivated and hoping for a sequel.
Avid readers will enjoy Sherman s nods to other literary works, and reluctant readers will find themselves immersed in the tale. Recommended for fans of Harry Potter, this story will captivate older readers while remaining accessible to younger ones. Recommended as a first purchase.
School Library Journal
Much of the story s momentum comes from Nick s efforts to teach himself magic as he grows along the way from a snarky and self-interested character into someone who takes responsibility for others, including Smallbone s previous apprentices. Well-timed revelations about the townspeople s origins also feed the ongoing mystery...by the end, even this is resolved, in a way that will satisfy wizardly apprentices and readers alike.
In her entertaining modern-day fantasy set in Maine, Delia Sherman (Changeling; The Freedom Maze) examines whether an evil wizard can also be good; the qualities necessary for success; and the importance of writing one's own story...The Evil Wizard Smallbone is a terrific middle-grade fantasy from a skillful, witty, always-inventive storyteller.
Shelf Awareness Pro
Readers will be hooked early on with the numerous spells, enchanted animals, dueling wizards, and constant action in this fantasy tale. A couple plot twists add to the action.
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