Twilight Hauntings: Enchanter's Child, Book 1
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A Lot or a Little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Twilight Hauntings is the first book in the Enchanter's Child series by Angie Sage, author of the popular Septimus Heap series. Just like Septimus Heap, Twilight Hauntings has magic, quirky characters, and a milder feel than the Harry Potter series. When two boys shove each other by the river and one falls in, the other jumps in to save him. The main character, Alex, rescues her foster mother from imprisonment, even though she knows she won't get any thanks for it. These moments and others make the violence feel milder, even though there are magical creatures that come out at dusk and try to harm Alex and her father, and even though there's a whole culture of oppression in a kingdom that wants to rid itself of all magical people. Themes of embracing who you are and cherishing friendship also make this story a good fit for younger fantasy fans.
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What's the Story?
In TWILIGHT HAUNTINGS: ENCHANTER'S CHILD, BOOK 1, Alex thought her magic Hex cards were a secret from everyone but a boy named Benn in the market who sells lemons and her young foster brother, Louie. But her cruel foster sister Zerra found out and decided to Name her to the sentinels, which would send her directly to prison for the rest of her life -- the standard punishment for having magical abilities. Alex reads danger in the cards the moment before the sentinels arrive and flees with Louie and the family's pokkle (a cross between a parrot and a gecko). They descend from their clifftop town into a valley full of citrus. Here they are safe from the sentinels, but not from creatures called the Twilight Hauntings, magical beings that prey on enchanters and their children. It's not long before Alex and Louie are spotted by one of the feared hauntings, a giant hawk who wants to eat them for breakfast.
Is It Any Good?
Quirky characters and mild magical adventures make this story from the author of the Septimus Heap series a winner for younger fantasy fans. There's also a sweetness to Twilight Hauntings, too, that you don't often see in stories battling oppressive kingdoms. It's embodied in Benn's grandmother, Nella. Benn is friend of the main character, Alex. Throughout the story, Nella takes in everyone who comes to the door of her quaint country house -- even a strange old man and a thorny teen boy who appears to work for the enemy. Nella feeds them homemade breads and jams, gives them advice, and fends off one of the most pernicious of the hauntings, a Grey Walker, by sealing the house up against it every evening. She also knows what Alex should do to keep herself safe, but Alex is not the type of character to run away from her problems.
Near the climax of Alex's adventures, two more matronly figures emerge, one of whom is quite good at knitting octopuses. They also have answers for Alex and Alex's long-lost father, the quirkiest character in the story -- or maybe that's the king, you decide. The ending sets up a new, very big problem for Alex and her father, leading us to more magical adventures in the series.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about the different kinds of families in Twilight Hauntings. Benn is raised by his grandmother and Alex is brought up in a foster family. How often do you see different kinds of families in the books you read?
How is the magic here the same or different from other fantasy books you read? What do the Hex cards do? What don't we know about the magical world yet?
Will you read more books in the Enchanter's Child series?
- Author: Angie Sage
- Genre: Fantasy
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Adventures, Brothers and Sisters, Friendship, Monsters, Ghosts, and Vampires
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
- Publication date: March 31, 2020
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 8 - 12
- Number of pages: 368
- Available on: Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
- Last updated: May 19, 2020
Our Editors Recommend
Septimus Heap Series
Charming series for kids not ready for big, dark fantasies.
Forest of Wonders: Wing & Claw, Book 1
Talking beasts, bright kids pep up fantasy series start.
The Door by the Staircase
Orphan girl meets witch in exciting, imaginative tale.
For kids who love fantasy and magic
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