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Posted July 17, 2003
these are the adventures I always dreamed I could have, growing up in New York!
I really loved this book; I liked the way Valentine finds out that she has magical powers like her grandmother's and how she has to work out ways of learning to use them even though her mother is pretending there's no magic at all in the family so Val has to outwit her a lot (it reminds me of Harry and the muggle family he lives with, only Val's mom isn't mean, just really muggly-scared of magic); and I love it the way Val gets help from an old street bum who's secretly a great wizard from the distant past. Growing up in the city myself, I used to wish that the poor street people you saw wandering around every day really did have some secret strength to make their lives less awful than they looked, and this book works out that dream really well. Also, Val gets to know this stuck-up boy from the East side who's probably going to become a great musician, and he gets dragged into the magical fight against the monster that lives in the subways and in Central Park, scheming to take over the city, so he gets pulled out of his self-centered way of looking at things. The statue of Jagiello, the hero from history who fights the dragon to the death, is still there in Central Park -- I went and looked at it -- all polished up and grand-looking now. You could really believe that this guy would take on a monster and win! A fast, great adventure, I really loved it.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.