7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
New Twists in a First Rate Series,
This review is from: Syren (Septimus Heap - book 5): Bk. 5 (Hardcover)
When I first started reading book 1 of this series (Magyk), I was not at all sure about it. It seemed that here was another series about wizards in a faux medieval setting, with nothing much to distinguish it. But just as I was thinking this to myself, Boy 412 leapt from the pages and slapped me around the face with a damp herring! I was totally hooked, because this series is second to none in terms of imagination, lovable characters (princess Jenna, Marcia the extraordinary wizard, Beatle and Aunt Zelda to name but a few) and hilarious plot elements and twists that are strongly reminiscent of a mixture of J K Rowling and Roald Dahl. Angie Sage is in the top flight of British children's authors - and one thing these books are not, is derivative. They are original and enjoyable stories that will be loved by children, young adults and adults alike.
This book takes up where the last left off. Princess Jenna, Beatle, Nicko and Snorri have not yet made it home after the adventures in Queste, and a newly promoted Septimus takes it upon himself to collect them on his dragon, Spitfyre. But all is not as it should be, and Aunt Zelda's attempts to get a safecharm to Septimus do not run exactly according to plan! The result then is an adventure that is every bit as good as those in previous volumes.
In this story we learn more about Princess Jenna's father, and wrap up some other storylines. We learn about another type of magical (or should I say "magykal") creature that has not yet made an appearance, but makes up for it here in Angie Sage's usual off the wall but captivating style. As usual there are issues of love, friendship, trust and betrayal, forgiveness and reconciliation. There are poignant moments and exhilarating ones, and all wrapped up in a zany world that is characteristic of this series.
One new twist in this book is that the world of Septimus Heap gains a whole new and unexpected dimension to its history. Some people will love this for the way it fills in some questions about why the world is as it is. Others will perhaps be less sure, having been quite comfortable with a world that had some mysteries as to how it got the way it is. I'll avoid spoilers by not saying more about that here.
All in all, though, this is a first class book in a first rate series. I would have no problem in recommending this to pretty much anyone at all.