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Horten's Miraculous Mechanisms: Magic, Mystery, & a Very Strange Adventureby Lissa Evans
Synopses & Reviews
Enter a wonderful world filled with real magic, mystery, and danger.
As if being small and having S. Horten as his name isn't bad enough, now 10-year-old Stuart is forced to move far away from all his friends.But on his very first day in his new home, Stuart's swept up in an extraordinary adventure: the quest to find his great-uncle Tony--a famous magician who literally disappeared off the face of the earth--and Tony's marvelous, long-lost workshop. Along the way, Stuart reluctantly accepts help from the annoying triplets next door… and encounters trouble from another magician who's also desperate to get hold of Tony's treasures.
A quirky, smart, charming page-turner, Horten's Miraculous Mechanisms will enchant young readers--as well as teachers, librarians, and parents.
Long-listed for the Carnegie Medal (2012) and the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize (2011)
"Evans borrows several classic tropes and themes — magic, riddles, a quest, and even a night at a museum — for the entertaining story of 10-year-old Stuart Horten (often nicknamed 'Shorten' for his small stature) who stumbles into a family mystery when he and his parents move to the small British town of Beeton. There, ÂStuart discovers that his Great-Uncle Tony Horten, who disappeared years ago without a trace, was both an inventor of mechanical devices and a magician. A chance phone call in a broken phone booth is the first step in a journey that leads Stuart around town, as he unearths his great-uncle's legacy and secrets. Stuart also draws the attention of April, May, and June (the journalistically inclined triplets next door), as well as Beeton residents with more sinister intentions. Evans has crafted an old-fashioned mystery of the kids-besting-clueless-adults variety. Stuart's dweeby parents are particularly hapless (his father, a crossword puzzle creator, regularly drops lines like 'Behold, I bring hydration for your powwow'). First published in the U.K., Evans's story leaves the door open for the sequel due in September. Ages 8 — 12." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
A rambling old inn, a strange map, an attic packed with treasures, squabbling guests, theft, friendship, and an unusual haunting mark this smartand#160;middle gradeand#160;mystery in the tradition of the Mysterious Benedict Society books and The Westing Game.
Itand#8217;s wintertime at Greenglass House. The creaky smugglerand#8217;s inn is always quiet during this season, and twelve-year-old Milo, the innkeepersand#8217; adopted son, plans to spend his holidays relaxing. But on the first icy night of vacation, out of nowhere, the guest bell rings. Then rings again. And again. Soon Miloand#8217;s home is bursting with odd, secretive guests, each one bearing a strange story that is somehow connected to the rambling old house. As objects go missing and tempers flare, Milo and Meddy, the cookand#8217;s daughter, must decipher clues and untangle the web of deepening mysteries to discover the truth about Greenglass Houseand#8212;and themselves.
About the Author
Lissa Evans, who resides in London with her husband and two daughters, has traveled quite a mysterious path of her own to middle-grade novelist. After a brief career in medicine and an even briefer one in stand-up comedy, Lissa became a comedy producer and spent a decade running a red pencil through other people's work before eventually beginning to write herself. Lissa has written three adult novels and a picture book. This is her first work of middle-grade fiction.
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