Reading Level: Middle Grade
Size: 240 pages
Publisher: Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
Release Date: September 3, 2013
Stand Alone or Series: 1st book in the Rose series
Source: eGalley from NetGalley.com
Rating: 4/5 stars
I got a copy of this book to review through NetGalley(dot)com. It looks like these books were originally released in the UK with the first book, this one, being released in 2009. There are three additional books out featuring Rose in the UK…I am not sure on the release date schedule for these in the US. This was a very cute rags to riches type of story with some magic in it.
Rose is an orphan who is hired on as a maid at a famous magician’s house. Rose is determined to do a good job so she can keep her new job. But Rose seems to have a bit of magic herself. That’s when she starts to hear rumors about kids disappearing. When friends of hers at the orphanage start to disappear Rose wants to help solve the mystery.
This was a cute read that involved disappearances of children and Rose teaming up with a talking cat and amagician’s apprentice to find them. The book is an easy read and fairly predictable, but it was still very entertaining. It’s one of those books where nothing all that awful happens and when you are done with it you feel happy.
Rose is an admirable character. She is a hard worker and does her best to help everyone get along. It’s just when her dreadful magic causes trouble that she causes a stir. She is definitely stubborn and wants to ignore the existence of her magic as long as she can. It was fun to watch her find her place in the household and adjust to magic that she has.
Freddy is the Magician’s apprentice and at first he comes off as very cruel and standoffish. It was fun to watch him and Rose interact.
The best character of the book is the talking cat, Gustavus. He adds a lot of humor and mystery to the book and I enjoyed him thoroughly.
This book was a quick read and decently written. You can definitely tell there will be more books in this series, since most, but not all of the issues are resolved. As mentioned above the plot is pretty predictable. This read is appropriate for all ages.
Overall a cute and fun read about an orphan who finds a magical life for herself as the maid at a magician’s house. Rose is an admirable character and I loved Gus the talking cat. There’s lot in here about working hard and learning about friendship. Additionally there is a lot of magic and mystery solving. The plot is very predictable for an adult reader, but I think younger readers will enjoy it. I would recommend to younger readers who enjoy reads about magic and fantasy; especially young girls.