The Threads of Magic

The Threads of Magic
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Release Date
April 13, 2021
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In a gripping stand-alone fantasy from the acclaimed Alison Croggon, a pickpocket steals the cursed Stone Heart and is propelled into a power struggle, woven with witchcraft, that will change the kingdom forever.

Pip lives by his wits in the city of Clarel. But when he picks the wrong pocket, Pip finds himself in possession of a strange dried heart in a silver casket—and those who lost it will stop at nothing to get it back. With assassins on his trail and the ominous heart beginning to whisper to him, Pip and his childlike older sister El are drawn deeper into the forbidden world of magic. Now they must seek the help of the secret witches of Clarel and Princess Georgette—who is sick of being a pawn in everyone else’s game—to wage revolution against a chilling king, a power-hungry church cardinal, and an ancient evil they don’t truly understand. A beautifully written adventure full of courage and kindness, The Threads of Magic transports readers to a magical city of airy palaces and rotten slums, of agents of the Office of Witchcraft Examination and midsummer dancing in the Weavers’ Quarter, of dangerous fathers and chosen family.

Editor review

1 review
Can friendship and courage transform a dark past into a hopeful future?
Overall rating
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Pip picks pockets to get food for himself and his sister, El. When he picks something unexpected, a mysterious box with a dried heart inside it, he and El are suddenly the most wanted people in Clarel. There's something odd about the heart, something that reeks of magic long forbidden. When the heart starts talking to Pip, he, alongside El and friends, Oni and Princess Georgette, must decide who is friend or foe and who really needs saving.

THE THREADS OF MAGIC is a fun, fast-paced middle grade fantasy with themes of friendship, found family, and making hard but right choices. Pip, El, Oni, and Georgette are all endearing main characters with exciting and creative intersecting paths. Pip and Georgette especially have completely opposite lives and personalities, but I love how they quickly became a team with a common goal.

The chapters are short and often end on cliffhangers, making this a solid pick for readers who want high action and something to keep them turning the page. The mystery of the heart and the plot among the royals is likewise compelling and engaging, often using familiar tropes but turning them on their heads a bit. The third person, omniscient point of view lends fascinating glimpses into some of the secondary characters and helps lay out the intricate plot, though it was sometimes hard to remember who was who if we didn't see their character for a while.

THE THREADS OF MAGIC is highly accessible, full of heart, and has a fun amount of sly humor for comic relief, perfect for fans of Deva Fagan and Dominique Valente.
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