Thank you to Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me on this Blog Tour and for providing me with an e-book in exchange for my honest opinion.
It’s Charlie’s first day at high school, his blazer is too big and his shoes are too small, but that’s the least of his worries. He’s been missed off the class lists and is now enrolled in a new school called Brittle’s Academy with a magical and mysterious head teacher. But to stay at Brittle’s Charlie must pass one of the tests…otherwise he’ll be sent to Oblivion!
This is the first book in the series of Brittle’s Academy for the Magically Unstable. The books can be read and enjoyed in any order as long as you’ve read Charlie Makes a Discovery first, which introduces us to the magical world of Professor Brittle, his pupils, the teachers and, of course, the school.
This is the first book in a new series which introduces a wonderful, magical new world as children attend Brittle’s Academy for the Magically Unstable, a school for magicians. I found this a really delightful and enchanting story with plenty of action, adventure and a brilliant magical system which is perfect for younger middle-grade readers who enjoy magical adventures.
The story opens with Charlie’s natural trepidation at starting secondary school. On arrival, he is confused when he sees two entrance gates and doesn’t know which to choose, especially as his brother can only see one! Things get even stranger when most of the children are sorted into form tutor groups, but Charlie and some others are left out – until they meet their new teacher, Professor Brittle, the Headteacher of Brittle Academy which is most certainly not the school they have enrolled in.
They soon arrive at their new school, Brittle’s Academy for the Magically Unstable which is hidden in plain sight from non-magical people. Excitement replaces fear as the children enter the gates, and see their new school for the first time, although they soon discover that for some, their first day may well be their last. The detailed description of the sights and sounds helps to immerse the reader in this new and fascinating world which blends the ordinary with the extraordinary for a magical combination.
The children are set a series of tasks to see if they can become fully-fledged students in this new school which sorts them into different Houses, each with a different attribute. If they are not sorted into a House, they are sent to oblivion! I found this magical choosing system really charming and enjoyed reading about each of them, and seeing who got into each House. This sets the series up perfectly for the next adventure as the children continue their magical education with their rather eccentric teachers!
Charlie is a really likeable character who is braver than he thinks, taking risks to help his friends and standing up for himself when it matters. I was keen to see which House was his perfect match!
The illustrations are wonderful, full of detail with a magical quality of their own, and really complement the story.
This is a wonderful beginning to a series which will capture the hearts of younger readers of magical fantasy stories.
About the Author:
Lily Mae Walters chose her pen name in honor of her beloved Grandparents who also star in the Josie James series. She is married with two teenage children and two Huskies who are the inspiration behind Murphy and Asher in the books. Lily Mae lives in Nuneaton, England and finds herself using local places and even her old school in her stories. Family and friends mean the world to Lily Mae and many will find themselves popping up throughout the series. Lily Mae also writes for adults under the name of Florence Keeling.
Facebook: Brittle’s Academy