Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Isabel and the School for Sorceresses

When J.R. Rowling wrote the first book in the Harry Potter series, many writers poured over her novel trying to discover the secrets of the author’s success. They soon discovered several elements that captivated both the young and the mature reader as they turned quickly through the pages. For a book to be a runaway success among the fertile young minds of today, it must deal with the many and varied troubles that children face, and offer them the tools to deal with similar problems in their own world. As I read through Isabel and the School for Sorceresses, I discovered that Alexandra and Svetlana McKenna had tapped into that magic combination of elements that make a successful story. People who have analyzed Rowling’s writing have said that ‘she is in touch with the child within,’ while Svetlana McKenna has done her one better by having her ten-year-old daughter collaborating with her.

Many children’s books are a chore to read, but the parent who might be sharing this reading experience with their tweens, is in for a pleasant experience. This is a ‘you can’t stop now, mom,’ kind of book, so set aside enough time to get to the last page before you put it away for the night. I won’t spoil the book by giving away the plot, but you are going to love Isabel and the magic world this mother and daughter writing team has created for us. I’m looking with great anticipation for the appearance of book three.

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