Magic's Child (Magic or Madness Trilogy Series #3)

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Overview

In the third and final installment in the Magic or Madness trilogy, only Reason can find answers within her family's magic to save everyone that matters most to her.

Magic's Child is the fantastically gripping conclusion to a trilogy that launched to multiple starred reviews, earning spots on the 2006 BBYA final list, and the Locus 2005 and 2006 Recommended Reading Lists.

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Overview

In the third and final installment in the Magic or Madness trilogy, only Reason can find answers within her family's magic to save everyone that matters most to her.

Magic's Child is the fantastically gripping conclusion to a trilogy that launched to multiple starred reviews, earning spots on the 2006 BBYA final list, and the Locus 2005 and 2006 Recommended Reading Lists.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Anita Barnes Lowen
Reason Cansino is 15, pregnant and magical. Filled with a magic more powerful than she has ever known (a "gift" from Raul Cansino, an ancient ancestor), she is rapidly evolving into a golden being indifferent to physical needs and human emotions. Reason knows that her new powers can be used to cure her mother, Sarafina, of the madness of magic—those possessing magic are in a no-win situation: if they use their magic, it shortens their lives; if they don't use it, they go mad. She goes to the asylum where Sarafina is confined only to find that her mother has been kidnapped by Jason. Those who have read the first two volumes may want to learn what happens in the end; for those who have not read the first two do read the first volumes before beginning this one. Those presumably explain the mathematics of Reason's magic, her relationship with her mother and grandmother, her dysfunctional family's magical ancestry and what really happened in the cemetery when Raul Cansino infused Reason with new magic and possibly had a hand in her pregnancy. Reviewer: Anita Barnes Lowen
VOYA - Ed Goldberg
In this final installment of the Magic or Madness trilogy, fifteen-year-old Reason is pregnant as well as infused with a higher form of magic by her centuries-old ancestor. If she succumbs to its power, she will live on a higher plane, impervious to emotions, hunger, pain, and heat while possessing amazing power. Her grandfather and nemesis, Jason, still after her magic, kidnaps her mother, Sarafina. Although Sarafina hates magic, Jason convinces her that magic is good. They join forces to absorb Reason's magic, an action that will kill her. In the meantime, Reason's friends Jay-Tee and Tom connect. When Reason strips Jay-Tee of her magic to save her life, Tom and Jay-Tee must address their magical differences. In an anticlimactic ending, Reason forms her own decisions about magic, which will impact her entire family. The writing in this trilogy has progressively deteriorated. Readers are constantly reminded that using magic results in premature death, whereas not using it causes insanity. Jay-Tee's wondering how she can live without magic is a new repetitive theme. The action is lackluster. Jay-Tee and Tom's relationship is mushy. The book's short climax does not warrant the extended lead up. The integration of numerical formulas and beams of light is confusing and muddled. Although the book stands on its own, readers of the first two installments will better understand this book. Series fans might be interested in the outcome, but they most likely will be disappointed.
School Library Journal

Gr 9 & Up - As the concluding volume of this trilogy opens, Reason Cansino is "fifteen years old, pregnant, and magic." In the world that Larbalestier has created, magic users have a choice-to use it and die young, or not to use it and go mad. However, at the conclusion of the previous volume, Magic Lessons(Penguin, 2006), Reason was given a different, more powerful type of magic. Her new abilities begin to change her and her unborn child, drawing her deeper into the world of magic and farther from her friends and family. Reason and her soon to-be-born child both have aspects of the title "magic's child," adding complexity to the book's themes of identity, choice, and power. Fans of the first two volumes will be glad to rejoin Reason and her friends in New York City and in Australia, though new readers may be confused by references to past events. Reason is a sympathetic and conflicted protagonist, and her struggles are fully realized and compelling. This is a strong conclusion to a compelling trilogy, and the epilogue offers a suitable twist and perhaps a chance to rejoin Reason in the future.-Beth L. Meister, Pleasant View Elementary School, Franklin, WI

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781595141811
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 3/27/2008
  • Series: Magic or Madness Trilogy Series , #3
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 304
  • Age range: 13 - 18 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.26 (h) x 0.82 (d)

Meet the Author

Justine Larbalestier was born and raised in Sydney, Australia. Her first book, The Battle of the Sexes in Science Fiction, was shortlisted for the Hugo Award. Her second, Magic or Madness, won the Norton Award. She now divides her time between Sydney and New York City, with her husband, Scott Westerfeld.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 9 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 18 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 26, 2012

    Midnight's roon

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  • Posted October 14, 2011

    Okay

    This book was very sad so i don't know what to read about this book. This book, i haven't read in so long

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 4, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Jocelyn Pearce for TeensReadToo.com

    At the start of this wonderful conclusion to a great fantasy trilogy, Reason Cansino is a lot of things most fifteen year olds aren't. She's magic. She's pregnant. And she may or may not be entirely human. <BR/><BR/>In this continuation of Reason's story, she is falling more and more deeply into the strange, ancient, and inhuman power given to her by Raul Cansino. She is becoming more and more scarily powerful--but she's giving up her humanity (and maybe that of her unborn child) for that power. She won't die young like so many magic-wielders who use their powers unwisely, and neither will she go crazy and end up in the loony-bin with her mother. <BR/><BR/>But is giving up her humanity worth it? <BR/><BR/>MAGIC'S CHILD is strictly a continuation of an already begun story. It is not a story within itself, really, and, as such, should only be picked up by those who have read the first two parts of the trilogy (MAGIC OR MADNESS and MAGIC LESSONS). If you haven't read those, well, they're highly recommended, as well! <BR/><BR/>Justine Larbalestier's third installment in the MAGIC OR MADNESS trilogy is a good conclusion to the story, one that will have readers racing through it as fast as possible. It was a little bit open-ended for my taste, but not in a terrible cliffhanger way. It was either a less than fabulous last chapter or a fabulous way to leave the door open for another book set in this universe; who knows? Either way, the characters, dialogue, and style of MAGIC'S CHILD are all great, it's well worth reading, and I'm looking forward to reading more from Justine Larbalestier.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2008

    Great premise. . .

    This highly lauded conclusion to the Magic or Madness trilogy is passable, but not nearly as worthy of celebration as some of the reviews would indicate. The premise for the story is wonderful: magic wielders have a choice, use their magic sparingly and die young or go crazy. This presents some unique challenges that are interesting at first. The start of the book moved at a fast pace, and held my interest, but at about the third chapter, the magic died for me and I pretty much quit caring about the characters. Reason Cansino is a fifteen year old magic wielder who, in a tryst orchestrated by her magical relation, becomes pregnant. Reason¿s mother, Sarafina, has gone crazy because she has eschewed magic entirely as evil. Jay-Tee is one of Reason¿s best friends (and it is Jay-Tee¿s eighteen year old brother who is the proud father¿except he doesn¿t know this until the end of the book) and falls head over magic for Tom, another of Reason¿s good friends. Jay-Tee has used her magic poorly and is near death until the intervention of Reason¿s uber magic relation who has changed Reason¿s magic into something very different. Reason then has the power to turn off the magic for magic wielders (which she does for Jay-tee, thus Jay-tee¿s salvation), but she will only be able to use that for a very short time because she herself is transforming into an entirely magic being. When that transformation is complete, Reason will no longer be human with human concerns. Religion and philosophy are woven through this story as well as the age old tale of good versus evil. In order to maintain long life, magic wielders are known to prey (somewhat vampirically) upon other magic wielders. Reason¿s grandfather is one of those, and there are allusions to her grandmother being a similar kind of person. In the end, everyone (except Tom who decides to keep his magic) lives unmagically ever after. The Epilogue opens the door (another subplot) for more books following the life of Reason¿s daughter who has been named ¿Magic.¿ What did I not like about the book? Well, it wasn¿t the WORST book I¿ve ever read, but it certainly treated teen sexuality and the aftermath with a most cavalier hand. Call me a prude, but most girls who are pregnant are NOT going to rescue the world and have a father to their children who is filthy rich and, as long as the ¿gorgeous¿ child doesn¿t interfere with his plans, is planning to be a part of the child¿s life. Also, I found the possible metaphor of magic as evil and religion as evil a little disturbing. That, however, is strictly a personal opinion. In the end, I suppose the main reason I wasn¿t excited about the book is that I didn¿t feel compelled to like any of the characters (with the possible exception of Tom) all that much. There is a fine balance between flawed characters and characters who just engender apathy because there are no redeeming qualities to them. The plot line is fairly predictable. . .good versus evil. . .who will win. . .good triumphs. . .they all live happily ever after. . .yada. . .yada. . .yada. Readers who like fantasy will enjoy the concepts, but may not be transfixed for long.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 23, 2007

    A reviewer

    At the start of this wonderful conclusion to a great fantasy trilogy, Reason Cansino is a lot of things most fifteen year olds aren't. She's magic. She's pregnant. And she may or may not be entirely human. In this continuation of Reason's story, she is falling more and more deeply into the strange, ancient, and inhuman power given to her by Raul Cansino. She is becoming more and more scarily powerful--but she's giving up her humanity (and maybe that of her unborn child) for that power. She won't die young like so many magic-wielders who use their powers unwisely, and neither will she go crazy and end up in the loony-bin with her mother. But is giving up her humanity worth it? MAGIC'S CHILD is strictly a continuation of an already begun story. It is not a story within itself, really, and, as such, should only be picked up by those who have read the first two parts of the trilogy (MAGIC OR MADNESS and MAGIC LESSONS). If you haven't read those, well, they're highly recommended, as well! Justine Larbalestier's third installment in the MAGIC OR MADNESS trilogy is a good conclusion to the story, one that will have readers racing through it as fast as possible. It was a little bit open-ended for my taste, but not in a terrible cliffhanger way. It was either a less than fabulous last chapter or a fabulous way to leave the door open for another book set in this universe who knows? Either way, the characters, dialogue, and style of MAGIC'S CHILD are all great, it's well worth reading, and I'm looking forward to reading more from Justine Larbalestier. **Reviewed by: Jocelyn Pearce

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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    Posted October 27, 2008

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