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The Magic Misfits Hardcover – November 21, 2017
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"Children of Blood and Bone"
Tomi Adeyemi conjures a stunning world of dark magic and danger in her West African-inspired fantasy debut. Learn more
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"I read this book with excitement, delight, and the increasing suspicion that it was going to make me disappear."―Lemony Snicket, author of the bestselling series A Series of Unfortunate Events and All the Wrong Questions
"An earnest message about discovering the magic in the world and finding the family that suits you."―Kirkus Reviews
"The approachable length and lively, funny writing will ensure this book, the first in a series, performs its own vanishing act from shelves."―Booklist
"A rollicking ride of a magical tale that's wholesomely suspenseful, values friendship, and applauds courage."―School Library Journal
"[A] good choice for fans of Lemony Snicket and Pseudonymous Bosch. With an emphasis on friendship and individuality, this fast-paced and clever series opener should have readers eager to check out future installments."―Publishers Weekly
"Fun...A worthy first volume."―BCCB
"Adventure, suspense, and excitement await these young magic misfits as they learn to trust one another and become friends."―School Library Connection
About the Author
Neil Patrick Harris is an accomplished actor, producer, director, host, author, husband, and a father of magical twins. Harris also served as President of the Academy of Magical Arts from 2011-2014. His memoir, Choose Your Own Autobiography was a New York Times Bestseller. The Magic Misfits is his middle grade debut.
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Top customer reviews
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This book begins with a boy who seems to be an orphan and is being "raised" (mistreated) by his crooked uncle. Both are magicians, but his uncle uses his tricks to swindle people. Finally, the boy has enough and breaks out on his own. Without giving too much away, he meets up with some other kids like himself and they form a gang out to stop the baddies!
This story is whimsical. It's hard to tell the setting... some of it makes it seem early 1900's, but other stuff makes it seem more current. The characters are strong and vivid, odd and interesting. One thing I really liked is the diversity. You have same sex parents, one of the kid's has a disability, different economic levels. NOT ONCE did my kid point any of this out, and I loved that. It's not unusual to a kid who is absorbing everything for the first time.
This book is SMART. Lots of advanced vocabulary, but it's either easy to discern the meaning from deliberately clear context or it's explained in such a respectful, humorous way. SO many of these books can be really condescending to kids. And this book is FUNNY. I was dying to read more as much as my son!
As far as reading level, I read this to my seven-year-old. He wouldn't have understand a lot of the humor without the tone of hearing it aloud and it gave us opportunity to explain some sayings and words. He's a pretty advanced reader, probably on the third grade level. I would say not younger than six to be read to... it might be too confusing.
I'm already planning to purchase this for Christmas for a few kids in our lives. And I will DEFINITELY be buying more of these if it becomes a full series. A delightful book!
We follow the story of a runaway away magician Carter, a young boy who wants to belong to a proper family. When Carter ran away from his uncle's clutches he found himself in a little town called Mineral Wells and tangled in a mystery. There he meets Leila, Theo, Ridley, Olly and Izzy. Together they create a small team called the Magic Misfists and try to reveal B.B Bosso for the crook that he is!
Between the narrator and the diverse character cast, Harris created a modern Lemony Snicket. No one character is the same and the narrator himself is a character of his own.
Carter is benevolent young boy who mysteriously lost his parents and was forced to live with his crook uncle Sly Mike. Just a young boy desperate to fit in and have a real family again.
Leila is a fiery ethnic (of unknown origin so far) girl who lives with her two dads, a magician and a chef (I see what you did there NPH). She dreams of being an escape artist magician and learning more magic with her friends.
Theo is a black gentleman who always wears a suit and lives with a musician dad and an artist mom. As a magician who specializes in levitation, he uses his violin that he keeps in his suit at all times to make things move.
Ridley is intelligent girl who is bound to a wheelchair, but it doesn't stop her from making things appear in the blink of an eye. She makes sure the misfits don't get into too much trouble.
Olly and Izzy are a performing twin duo who know how to magically appear in random places to entertain the audience.
With such diverse characters there is sure to be someone that any kid picking up the book can identify with...without being magicians of course.
Throughout the Magic Misfits, the reader is given quick magic tips that makes one feel like a magician too, and that maybe it is not that hard. The narrator makes sure to explain some tricks in such a simple manner that even a dog could do it.
I was really impressed with Harris' way of story telling, while it can be argued that it is very similar to Lemony Snicket's style of story telling, Harris created a quirky-go-lucky narrator that wants the audience to laugh and cheer for the characters rather than feel pity for the character's life. Even though Magic Misfists is a Middle Grade novel I believe it is still a novel YA readers will find themselves enjoying, especially if you are a Lemony Snicket fan.
I bought this book to pre-read for my daughters.
IT! WAS! AMAZING!
A wonderful read! You could hear NPH read it along with you... it drips with his articulation and rhythm. It’s laced with magical tidbits and tricks!
I’m looking forward to reading to my LittleLadies and maybe getting copies for my siblings families!
(I also loved that it pushing friendships not romantic relationships which is always a plus in my opinion)
(Side note for diversity, one kid is in a wheel chair, one tuxedo clad boy, homeless kid, and a girl adopted by two dads)
I would read again and rate it 4 and 2/10 stars
(The above is a review by my extremely well-read, book-obsessed 11 year old. I also read the book and we both enjoyed it. My only wish is that it was a bit longer, but I understand that a longer book can be daunting for some newer readers. It was an easy read with an interesting plot but what I enjoyed most was the inclusion of diversity. I also enjoyed the characters, how they bound together based on the idea that they are “misfits”, and I believe I’m not alone in finding that highly relatable ;) Well done, Mr. Harris!)