Reading Level: Middle Grade
Size: 192 pages
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Release Date: April 28, 2015
Stand Alone or Series: Stand Alone
Source: ARC from Amazon Vine
Rating: 4/5 stars
I got a copy of this book to review through the Amazon Vine program. This was a very quick and fun fantasy read that will appeal to kids just getting started on chapter books. The reading level was a bit easy and the plot a bit simple for the middle grade and older crowd.
Pip loves magical creatures and is absolutely obsessed with Jeffrey Higgleston’s Guide to Magical Creatures. Pip is also the only person she knows who can talk to magical creatures. After an incident with some unicorns that results in a lot of damaged people and property, Pip’s parents decide that she should spend the summer with her aunt who runs a veterinarian clinic for magical creatures. Pip is enjoying her time there until the town has a horrible outbreak of Fuzzles. Fuzzles are a danger because they ignite when they get excited or scared. Pip and her aunt want to save the Fuzzles and relocate them but local law thinks extermination is a better idea. Can Pip figure out what has the Fuzzles migrating to their town before someone really gets hurt?
The story is similar in a lot of ways to the Nathaniel Fludd Beastologist series by Robin LaFevers and is written for a similar age group. It is a cute and humorous story and reminded a bit of a Carl Hiaasen middle grade novel (Scat, Hoot) combined with some of Brandon Mull’s Fablehaven. There is a lot of humor and quite a few interesting magical creatures.
There are pages from Jeffrey Higgleston’s Guide to Magical Creatures sprinkled throughout the book. These included some cute drawings and lots of notes scribbled all over them from Pip. I enjoyed these but was a bit irritated that they cut off these entries in mid-sentence (I kept feeling like I was missing a page in the book or something). I know, I know it’s meant to be a quick except…but can we at least end on a complete sentence?
I enjoyed it but it is definitely a book I would recommend to kids starting beginning chapter books or kids just getting into middle grade fantasy. Adults aren’t going to enjoy this as much because the plot and writing are just too simple to be all that engaging. However, it is something I think my eight year old son will absolutely love. He is going to be reading it next, so I will see what he thinks about it.
Overall a cute beginning chapter book about magical creatures and preservation. I enjoyed it but I think it will suit younger readers much more than adults. It is a quick and humorous read that will remind some of Carl Hiaasen’s Hoot-type of middle grade books and some of Brandon Mull’s Fablehaven series. If you enjoy this series I also recommend the Nathaniel Fludd Beastologist series by Robin LaFevers.
This book goes towards the following reading challenges:
– You Read How Many Books? Reading Challenge