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--this might be a good book, especially for younger listeners. It has short chapters with whiz-bang, ominous cliff-hanger endings that would be good for the younguns to ask, "What next?"
If, however, you, as I was, are looking for an entry into an entirely different world that leaves your imagination singing, well, this might be rather a disappointment. It seems "odd" just for the sake of oddness. Common objects have "Uncommon" uses... and that's about as far as it goes.
There are Invisibility Candles that make you invisible (Invisibility cloaks, anyone?); feather pens that leave threatening messages (Howlers?); Common people are called Muckers (Muggles?); Uncommon people wear "hobsmatch" which is a mishmash of Common clothing (wizards at a muggle campground at the Quidditch World Cup?); and a multitude of other things that'll have you scratching your head because they're soooo familiar.
As far as the story: Grandma Sylvie is a mystery. An accident in the distant past caused amnesia. But there are secrets within that mystery that have Ivy and her older brother Seb racing the future-telling clock (prophecy globe?) through mansions with many doors, battling wolves that talk (werewolves?), wraith moths, and leaning on newfound friends for help in the Uncommon world. It's a decent enough story, esp. with the addition that people of the uncommon world wear gloves that store every single transaction, every move, the wearer has made. Nice Big Brother touch.
Jayne Entwistle turns in a good performance, but she's lacking the enthusiasm, the energy, the verve she had when she narrated "The War That Saved My Life."
There are Trading Seasons, unlike school years at Hogwarts, that Ivy and Seb are promised to come back for, so get ready for a series. But don't get ready for breathless sweeps of imagination. Your kids might like this; you might be annoyed at worst, smiling mildly at best...
5 of 7 people found this review helpful
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and adored the characters. The narrator, Ms. Entwistle is one of my favorites and always does an outstanding job. I look forward to the next in the series and hopefully many more.