Book Review: Seven Sorcerers by Caro King

6265292Title: Seven Sorcerers
Author: Caro King
Genre: Middle Grade, Fantasy, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: May 3rd 2011
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Rating: 4,5 stars
Review copy provided by S&S Galley Grab.

Nin Redstone wakes up one Wednesday to discover that her little brother, Toby, has vanished and no one — not her mother, not her grandparents — can remember him. Only Nin can, and she’s going to get him back.
But when Bogeyman Skerridge (who always gets his child) comes for Nin too, she realizes that finding Toby is going to be a lot harder then she thought. Toby is trapped in the House of Strood, which is located in another land called The Drift, and Skerridge can’t — or won’t — help her find him.
Left with no choice, Nin heads into The Drift with her new friend Jonas. The Drift is filled with the fabulous and the terrible, but a plague is slowly killing all the magical things. The Seven Sorcerers who ruled there might have been able to prevent it, but in the end, even they have succumbed.
Can Nin find Toby before he falls victim to a terrible fate in the House of Strood and before the plague makes it impossible for them to get home? Can she and Jonas avoid the tombfolk, mud men, and various creatures who want to stop them? And what is the secret of the Seven Sorcerers?

Seven Sorcerers by Caro King is one of the most humorous, entertaining and spellbinding middle grade novels I’ve ever read. With highly entertaining characters, epic villains that could make Voldemort shiver in fear, reliable and unreliable sidekicks, and a strange and miraculous world called The Drift, Seven Sorcerers offers everything you could ever wish for in fantasy. I was both amazed and impressed while reading this, and I would recommend it to everyone, fantasy fans or not.

Ninevah Redstone is your ordinary teenage girl who has just begun to realize that boys and girls are two totally different species, and who has convinced herself that things like bogeymen and monsters in the closet don’t exist. Then one afternoon, her younger brother Toby is acting very strange. And the next morning, Toby has mysteriously disappeared. Like that’s not bad enough, her parents don’t seem to remember that Toby even existed at all, all his belongings have vanished apart from a lonely little teddybear he used to drag along and that convinces Nin that Toby wasn’t just some figlet of her imagination. Determined to rescue her brother, she builds a trap for the same creature that made him disappear and that is now after her. That creature is none other than Bogeyman Skerridge, practically the leader of the Bogeymen, and the only one who never lost a child before. Skerridge has a reputation to uphold and thus, when Nin escapes him, he goes after her, even if it’s the middle of the day and that breaks more Bogeymen rules than he has broken in a lifetime.

Aided by Jonas, who is a Bogeyman-escapee as well, Nin travels to The Drift, an alternate university existing next to our own, where she finds out that her brother Toby is kept in a place called The House of Strood. Strood himself is quite the cruel fellow, with a liking towards young children. All Bogeymen, and some other vicious nightly creatures, work for this evil individual. Before she very well realizes it, Nin is on her way to cross half of The Drift to retreive her brother from the evil Mr. Strood, to discover what is true and what isn’t about the legend of the Seven Sorcerers, to fight Hellhounds and Bonemen, to create an actual creature from mud and to put Bogeymen Skerridge on the path to redemption. It’s the adventure of a lifetime.

Nin Redstone is one of the most interesting, entertaining and loveable characters I’ve ever come across in middle grade fantasy. She has an amazing sense of humor, a witty and sparkly personality and an intelligent brain to match. She is a worthy opponent, even for bogeymen as old and experienced as Skerridge. Jonas makes an excellent sidekick, and an experienced guide through the world of The Drift. The only part that bugged me a bit was that Nin didn’t seem to display a lot of emotions at the loss of her brother in the beginning of the novel. Sure, she vows to save him and bring him back home, and she’s in shock from his disappearence, but even when she’s ripped away from her parents and they don’t remember who she is, we see no honest display of emotions from her. I mean, if my Mom suddenly forgot I even existed, or my young brother mysteriously disappeared, the first thing I would probably do is burst out in tears. And even later on in this book, while Nin is crossing The Drift in order to retreive Toby, she doesn’t show a whole lot of emotion either when something goes wrong. This makes her seem a bit shallow, emotionless, cold and distant. On the other hand, it might be more appropriate for a middle grade novel not to focus on the loss for all too long, and instead focus more on the adventures ahead.

Talking about the adventures, Seven Sorcerers really offers a lot of originality in that department. The evil villains Nin and Jonas face along the way to the house of Mr. Strood are all equally original, well-thought-through, funny and entertaining. We meet things like Bogeymen, Bonemen, Hellhounds, enchanted forests, a dark and evil unnamed thing, creatures made from mud and fallen giants. The creatures are innovating and refreshing, and there was a smile on my face every time we were introduced to yet another bad guy or yet another potential friend. From vampires to sorcerers, The Drift has it all. The world-building, as you may have guessed, is nothing short but impressive, and it kept me wanting for more. Especially The House of Strood is amazing, with all its hallways, attic rooms, secret passageways and hidden mysteries. The creative mind of Caro King does not fail to amaze me.

Seven Sorcerers is the first book in a series, followed by Shadow Spell, which will hopefully be released soon. I cannot wait to travel back to The Drift, and to read more about the entertaining creatures hidden there. Seven Sorcerers truly is a very lovely, entertaining and enjoyable book for middle graders, young adults and adults alike (it makes you reminisce all those wonderful moments you had while discovering the world of Harry Potter, or the magical world of Alice in Wonderland, and all those childhood monsters you were so afraid of). I would recommend it to everyone.

Comments

  1. yay! i can’t wait to read this. thanks for the fun review! 🙂

  2. This was already on my list, but I’m looking forward to it even more now!

  3. I’m really glad you enjoyed this book. I’ve been wanting to read it since I saw it on the shelves. LOVE the cover! I want to read it even more now b/c of you! <3

    And thanks for finding me through GFC (what is that, btw? ^^;;). I've always enjoyed reading your blog and hope you will like mine as well! <3

  4. I read this book and it was an truly amazing I had a great time reading it and hope you do to !!!! CONGRATZ CARO KING !! <3 <3

  5. It tries me enough 😉

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