The Wishing Spell follows Alex and Conner Bailey, a set of twins, as they navigate their way through the fantasy land within their family’s storybook. This magical world encompasses all of the well-known fairytales, and each has their own “kingdom”. Stuck in this alternate world, the twins must go through each of these kingdoms on a scavenger hunt of sorts to collect items they need to get back home.
No doubt about it, this is a middle grade book. And while I liked it, it was definitely in need of some better editing. Some of the sentences were choppy and often “told” too much of the story, rather than showing the readers and letting them interpret things for themselves. Despite that, the actual story, itself, was very captivating and I found myself unable to put it down. It had unexpected takes on some of the characters and I liked how well the kingdoms and various fairytales were weaved together.
Each chapter begins with an illustration and Brandon Dorman’s talent is evident. I know there is color map that will be included in the final version of this book, but I wish it could have been in the ARC for reviewers to see. I had a chance to see it when Chris spoke at the Children’s Author Breakfast at BEA and it’s a great visual aid.
Yes, I will admit that I was initially interested in this book because I watch Glee, but after hearing Chris talk about how this book has been years in the making (with his grandmother being his first editor, when he was a kid), I truly wanted to read it. It was a really fun adventure of a book and I hope to read more about the Bailey twins and whatever the future holds for them.