Review Detail

Kids Fiction 301
Through the Looking Glass
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
4.0
After his adventures in My Magical Life and The Magical Mix-Up , Zach has reawakened his magical abilities, but is keeping this a secret from his family so that he doesn't have to go back to being homeschooled. His friends Rachel and Aaron always help him out, and the three of them are involved with the school play. After a disastrous incident with a magical paint brush, Zach has an accident with a magical mirror he discovered in the attic when his mom had him cleaning things out. Zach travels through the mirror into an alternate reality, Reverse World. There, he is Jak, and he attends a magical school. His friends have powers, as well as slightly different names and personalities. Tricia is nice, Rachel is timid, Aaron likes dogs, and his mother is a horrible cook! While Zach is in this world, Jak has come into our place of existence, and is having to adjust to all of the changes. Unless Zach cam figure out what has happened, both he and Jak will be stuck and unable to return to their own realities. Will the two boys be able to count on their friends in order to solve the mystery?
Good Points
Mr. King is a You Tube presence who specializes in videos that make it look like he is doing magic tricks. Zach has struggled over the last few books trying to figure out what his abilities are. It looked as if he did not have any abilities, which is why his family sent him to public school, but it turns out that he can take other people's magic implements (his mother has a ring, his father a watch, and his sister a pair of glasses) and use them himself. The attic that his mother had him clean was full of family heirlooms that all had magical qualities, including the mirror.

The thing that I like best is Zach's relationship with Aaron and Rachel. Aaron is a good friend (who has a cute cat), who supports Zach no matter what goes wrong. And a lot goes wrong! Zach has a crush on Rachel because she is fearless and brave, and she pushes Zach to work through his difficulties instead of giving up.

There are some graphic novel style pages in between chapters, and this is a big draw for readers who like books like Holm's Squish: Super Amoeba and Vernon's Dragonbreath, but want somewhat longer books. Zach is a fun character who would be right as home at a cafeteria table sitting next to Greenwald's Charlie Joe Jackson, Peirce's Big Nate, or Beaty's Dorko the Magnificent.
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