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Showing 1-10 of 97 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 142 reviews
on June 5, 2013
The whole family ended up reading this book--from Nana (70) to little bro (8). We also listed to the audio version, which has a fabulous reader. Everyone loved the story! My daughter, who is in 6th grade and had resisted the novel because I suggested it (we're at that stage...), ended up falling in love with the book and has read it numerous times. My eight-year-old surprised me by not only loving the story but also developing an interest in World War II. I thought that elements of the story might be confusing for him, but instead of being confused he became very curious and began asking questions about the McCarthy era and drawing parallels between those times and our own. The magical bits are well done--fantastic and yet still believable. It's funny and has a touch of romance, but not so much that boys are put off by yucky "girl" stuff. The mix of characters makes the book appealing to both girls and boys (not an easy task in the YA world). And there is enough adventure to make everybody ask for "one more chapter!" when you say it's time for bed.

Bottom line, this is a fabulous book with characters you will have such affection for that you will be sorry to see the story end. It's literary and engaging and well written and yet the whole family can enjoy it (the audio version is particularly great for multigenerational family car trips). We can't wait for the sequel! (And if you are a grownup, be sure to check out Maile Meloy's other work, which is equally awesome, though very different.)
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on March 28, 2015
READ THIS BOOK! It's amazing! I really love it! The romantic tension between Ben and Janie, the mystery and different factors that play into the apothecary's magical secrets and the plots of the enemies! My very favorite was Pip! He was the perfect third to the trio, and he was always very witty and clever. Some people may not like the ending (I'm not going to spoil it, so I'll just say the special drink Janie has), but I thought it was a nice wrap-up, especially when you read the sequel. Take a chance on it!
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on June 18, 2013
This book was certainly not what I expected! It surprised me in a very good way! I was afraid it would be extremely scary and strange, but decided to get it anyway. Although it did have magical/fantasy parts it also had action, adventure, and spine tingling suspense. I do not want to give away the book, but if you do not enjoy fiction and fantasy you should not get this book. Instead of an ordinary apothecary the apothecary in the book conducts spells, the change of matter (and humans changing into birds). But, the author combined fantasy and real-life events in a very interesting and engaging way. The book was extremely well written. I would recommend it to anyone of any age! Well done Maile Meloy!!!!!! :-D
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on June 25, 2016
Daughter read every Harry Potter and loved them, this was recommended by another parent, very well-read. Well, it exceed her expectations, saying "it may be even better than the Potter series!" liked it so much, the series has been given as a gift to other heavy-reading kids for their 11th birthdays.
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on September 1, 2013
I liked the plot, the characters, it was all good. Nothing terribly memorable but the illustrations were also great and I would recommend this to middle readers and adults with a child-heart :) The only thing was the characters were suppose to be 14ish and I kept thinking they were 9 or 10 based on their thoughts and actions, until they were kissing and then I was surprised until I remembered they were suppose to be older. Oh, yeah. Nice to have a female protagonist that boys will probably not mind reading about.
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on September 18, 2017
goddaughter enjoyed it
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on April 19, 2017
With a reliably consistent voice and a plot that moves at light speed, this book was an absolute joy. The characters came alive and made me want to have my own conversation with them.
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on August 10, 2017
Very heartfelt and thrilling story! I will definitely read the rest of the books in this series! It was so good I read it in a day and. A half!
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on May 11, 2016
It was a real page turner from start to finish. I could hardly put it down. It was a fast and easy read. I hated for it to end as I enjoyed the characters so much. Read it and you'll see what I mean.
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on August 28, 2013
I ordered this book, paperback, for my 12 year old son for summer reading prior to his seventh grade year. He thoroughly enjoyed the book! The book was received in brand new, perfect condition as described by the seller. I received it before the estimated shipping date, which is always a plus! I recommend this book to the 12-14 year old age group. It is a fun, whimsical read, but educational at the same time!
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