Review: The Familiars

The FamiliarsTitle:  The Familiars
Adam Jay Epstein and Andrew Jacobson
Number of Pages:  360

Synopsis:  One day, Aldwyn, a non-magical alley cat, finds himself in a most unusual pet shop full of strange, magical creatures. Jack, a wizard in training, chooses him to be his familiar, an animal companion that can help with his training. He meets two other familiars and tries to act magical, but when their human friends are kidnapped, that will be harder than it seems!

Why kids would like this book:  This book is great for kids because it has characters that you just fall in love with, a perfect mix of exciting parts and suspenseful parts, and so many twists and turns that will keep you turning pages till midnight!

Why adults would like this book:  The concept had a lot of potential, with magical adventures seen through the eyes of animals.  However, for some reason, I could NOT get through this book.  I tried several times to make it past the halfway point of the book without success. The writing seemed tedious and the plot was getting too predictable and formulaic, so it totally lost my interest.  I was very glad that we checked this one out from the library, and hadn’t bought it.  However, this book is a prime example of something that works as kidslit for kids, even if it doesn’t translate well for adults.  I hope your kids like it just as my daughter did……just don’t be tempted to steal this one from your children after they go to sleep!

Miranda’s rating:  I am a lover of cats, and also a lover of magic, so I think I would rate this book a 9 out of 10. I only gave it a nine because some of the parts in the book can be a little unclear, or too fast or slow. But still; overall, I think it is a great book!

Todd’s rating: Sad to say, but to be honest I think I need to say a 4.

Miranda’s favorite character:  Hmm, I can’t decide between Gilbert or Aldwyn. Both of them are funny, and Gilbert is very kind.

Todd’s favorite character:  Kalstaff the wizard.  He refuses to exit without putting up a big fight!

Miranda’s favorite part of book:  I can’t tell you my favorite part without spoiling too much, but I’ll choose another favorite part anyway. One of my OTHER favorite parts is when Aldwyn meets the other two familiars.

Todd’s favorite part of book: Floating “spyballs” down the stream…..creepy, but cool!

Miranda’s recommended age groups:  10+


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