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Parties & Potions (Magic In Manhattan, Book 4) Paperback – February 9, 2010

37 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Mlynowski’s fourth book featuring teenage witch sisters Miri and Rachel is just as funny and appealing as the first three. In this installment, Rachel is looking forward to sophomore year and her budding relationship with Raf. She definitely enjoys her new powers but is determined to keep her witchhood secret from her father, her friends, and especially from Raf. When Miri convinces her to undergo training for a Samsorta ceremony (a “débutante-slash-bat-mitzvah-slash-quinceañera witch party thing”), Rachel meets dozens of teenage witches and warlocks and gains a new perspective on witchery. Mlynowski balances Miri’s delight at finally having a social life with Rachel’s very real fears of what will happen if her friends and father find out that she is “different,” as, of course, they do. But the story is clever, Rachel is a hoot, the girls’ concerns are valid, and, best of all, Mlynowski leaves the sledgehammer in the closet and handles the “importance of being yourself” theme with a light touch. Grades 6-9. --Chris Sherman --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


"Satisfying...A fun, light read." --Kirkus Reviews

"Funny & appealing." --Booklist

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 450L (What's this?)
  • Series: Magic In Manhattan
  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Ember; 1 edition (February 9, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385736460
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385736466
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.8 x 8.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #193,941 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Sarah is the author of both the WHATEVER AFTER and MAGIC IN MANHATTAN series, as well as DON'T EVEN THINK ABOUT IT (March 2014), MILKRUN, FISHBOWL, AS SEEN ON TV, MONKEY BUSINESS, GIMME A CALL, TEN THINGS WE DID (AND PROBABLY SHOULDN'T HAVE) and HOW TO BE BAD (along with E.Lockhart and Lauren Myracle). Sarah's short stories and novellas include A LITTLE BIT BROKEN, A NICE FLING IS HARD TO FIND, KNOW IT ALL and CRUISIN'. Sarah also co-edited the bestselling chick-lit collections GIRLS' NIGHT IN and GIRLS' NIGHT OUT and co-wrote the first ever guide to writing chick lit, SEE JANE WRITE.

Sarah's books have been translated into twenty-one languages and optioned to Hollywood. She was born in Montreal but now lives and writes in New York City.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Enchanting Reviews on March 4, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Paranormal YA

Rating: 5 Enchantments

PARTIES AND POTIONS is a really fun, paranormal read. Its definitely one of my top favorites of the year. When her younger sister Miri wants to delve deeper into the witch world, Rachel's resistant. Sure, its one thing to be a witch, but to be one openly is quite another. But when Miri gets them invited to dinner with one of her new witch friends, Wendaline, off of MyWitchBook, Rachel finds herself exposed to a whole new witchy world.

I really enjoyed PARTIES AND POTIONS. Ms. Mlynowski creates a wonderfully unique paranormal world that's easy to enjoy even if you haven't read the other books in the series. I was pulled into the story right from the start. Rachel is a great character, stuck having to deal with her younger sister Miri's obsession with having a Samsorta, a debutante-like debut for witches in Romania. Now Rachel's forced into Samsorta lessons, in Arizona no less, plus there's a cute warlock, Adam, who might just make things even more complicated. Things would be so much easier if she could tell her mortal boyfriend Raf that she's a witch, but she can't bring herself to do that. What if that breaks them up? Besides, she's just not as outgoing with her witchy ways as her new friend, Wendaline. And things get even more complicated when Miri suddenly decides they have to tell their father about their witchy ways.

I loved Rachel struggling to deal with her witchy ways in a mortal world and then in comes her new friend Wendaline, who keeps announcing to everyone she's a witch--she's definitely a scenestealer! One of my favorite scenes is when Rachel and Miri go to their first Simsorta, the warlock's version of a Samsorta.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Mae Day on January 17, 2009
Format: Hardcover
In the fourth book of the Magic in Manhattan series, Rachel and her sister, Miri, learn more about what all comes with being a witch. Miri meets a friend online, Wendaline, and Wendaline tell the girls about a Samsorta, which is a debutante ball for witches. Miri is more than happy to take classes to get ready for the Samsorta. That means she'll be able to make friends in the witching world. Rachel is less than thrilled. Anything that interrupts time that she could be spending with the love of her life, Raf, is something that is not a priority. But, when Rachel sees how much it means to Miri to participate in the Samsorta, she agrees.

Not only does Rachel have that going on, but Wendaline is starting classes at her high school. And, Wendaline is definitely not afraid to use magic in front of others or even tell them that she's a witch. That of course gets Cassandra's, the meanest girl in school, attention. So, to help out Wendaline, Rachel tries to find ways to make her fit in better and hopefully get Cassandra off of Wendaline's back.

Rachel is also having to deal with all the Samsorta classes and having to come up with excuses to tell her dad and her boyfriend, Raf, why she and Miri have to leave early or for periods of time. It would be so much easier if she could tell them what's going on, wouldn't it? With all this going on, how is a girl suppose to have fun with all the fun, world wide parties that the other witches in class through?

I have loved the Magic in Manhattan series since the first book, Bras and Broomsticks, and this book is no different. This whole series is fun to read and there's a lot of humor through out. Ms. Mlynowski knows how to delight readers with mixing something supernatural with problems that every teen is sure to encounter. All of Sarah's books are sure to delight. If you haven't read this series, I suggest you pick it up and try it out.

reposted: [...]
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Little Willow on January 4, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Stir together the silliness of Bewitched and the hijinks of Sabrina, the Teenage Witch, add the sassiness of a modern-day New Yorker and a sprinkling of sibling rivalry, and you've got a magical series called Magic in Manhattan.

High school sophomore Rachel thinks her life is pretty average - until she learns that her mother is a witch! Her little sister Miri got her powers in the first book, Bras & Broomsticks, which made Rachel more than a little jealous. After watching her mom and sis bond over spells, Rachel finally got her own powers at the very end of the second book, Frogs & French Kisses. In the third book, Spells & Sleeping Bags, she learned that magic isn't as easy as it looks.

In Parties & Potions, the fourth book in the series, Rachel and Miri find out that witches have a "debutante-slash-bat-mitzvah-slash-quinceañera witch party thing" called a Samsorta on an island off of Romania on Halloween. (Warlocks do too, only their coming-of-age event is called Simsorta instead, and it can take place anywhere in the world.) Miri really wants to take part, and her mom lets her - as long as Rachel does it as well.

Meanwhile, a witch named Wendaline enrolls as a freshman at Rachel's high school. Though she tells Wendaline to tone down the witchiness at school, Rachel begins to socialize with other witches and warlocks on the weekend, thanks to Samsorta classes (and Miri's newest obsession: a networking website called MyWitchbook). She worries about her future with Raf, her "norlock" (no magic, normal human) boyfriend who doesn't know she's a witch, and she begins to wonder if it would be better to date a warlock, like cute, friendly Adam.

While learning the witchy language of Brixta and trying new spells that don't always succeed, Rachel is still the fun-loving, good-natured character fans of the Magic in Manhattan series have come to know and love. When it comes to supernatural comedies, Sarah Mlynowski has the magic touch.
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