Monday, May 28, 2012

Spellbound (The Books of Elsewhere #2) by Jacqueline West

My journal has the word, "shespies" and I'm thinking what is that? It's actually "she spies." She, is Olive, and the object of her spying, is Rutherford, a new character in book 2, who talks so fast he puts entire sentences together. So "she spies Rutherford in the garden" sounds like "shespiesrutherfordinthegarden." Guess I was unconsciously getting into the character which is easy to do with West. Her characters are distinct, memorable, and flawed. Take Olive. You can count on Olive getting herself into a mess and ticking off those around her before courageously extracting herself from the mess.

In her latest escapade, Olive's found the McMartin's spellbook. Her original intention is to free Morton from the painting and find his parents, but the spellbook has a power and "mind" of its own. It serves the McMartins and Olive doesn't quite know what she's got reading scrunched under her bedcovers late at night with a flashlight. The cats try to warn her but Olive is under a "spell." When she finds herself on a roof ready to jump, she realizes the book is truly dangerous and finds help from an unlikely source.

 West's descriptions incorporate all the senses and evoke images such as a "dusty lace of spiderwebs." The humor sprinkled throughout keeps the story from being too dark and scary although the McMartin's are trying to kill those who stand in their way. And just when you think you have the plot figured out, West throws an unpredictable twist that makes the story suspenseful and fun. This well-written fantasy mystery is quite enjoyable.

Reading Level 5.3
4 out of 5 Smileys

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