Whispering to Witches

Whispering to Witches

4.7 7
by Anna Dale, John Curless
     
 

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A fabulously detailed and richly exciting adventure story that grips the listener in its magical clutches from the very beginning.

When Joe is traveling to stay with his mother and stepfather for Christmas, little does he imagine the excitement and magical intrigue that awaits him when he falls headfirst into an evil plot to rid England of witches. With

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Overview

A fabulously detailed and richly exciting adventure story that grips the listener in its magical clutches from the very beginning.

When Joe is traveling to stay with his mother and stepfather for Christmas, little does he imagine the excitement and magical intrigue that awaits him when he falls headfirst into an evil plot to rid England of witches. With great bravery and more than a little help from his half sister, Esme, and a new friend, Twiggy, he has to muster all his courage and ingenuity to solve the riddles surrounding him and save his newfound friends.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
"Dale makes a sparkling debut with this sprightly novel introducing a 12-year-old who inadvertently becomes tangled in a web of dueling witches," PW wrote. Ages 8-12. (Sept.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
Gr 5-7-When his father is called away at Christmas, Joe resigns himself to spending the holiday in Canterbury with his mother, stepdad, and seven-year-old half sister, Esme. After a train ride leaves him stranded at the wrong station, he borrows a large tricycle that seems to have a will of its own. It transports him to the ramshackle headquarters of the somewhat disreputable Dead-nettle Coven. The witch world is in an uproar over the theft of the world's most dangerous spell, and, apparently, somebody thinks that Joe has it. When Esme is kidnapped, he and young witch Twiggy are drawn into the hunt for the missing hex and uncover a plot to destroy the Earth's entire witch population. The incongruous chief villain is a bun-sporting librarian-whose first line actually is "Shh." All the expected fantasy elements are here-a secret, arcane culture coexisting with the mortal sphere, rhymed spells, and magic users with more-or-less good-natured disdain for mortals. The narration relies heavily on flashbacks and expositional dialogue. The settings, both real and fanciful, are convincingly portrayed. There are some mildly humorous touches, but some plot elements don't seem to mesh completely. Joe's discomfort with his second family is emphasized at the beginning, but it plays little role in the action and remains unresolved at the end. Diane Duane's "Young Wizards" series (Harcourt) and Jill Murphy's "Worst Witch" books (Candlewick) have more fully realized magical worlds.-Elaine E. Knight, Lincoln Elementary Schools, IL Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Joe Binks is not born a witch, but the "insignificant schoolboy" manages to end up in a coven anyway. It's his father's fault, really, for sending him off at the last minute to his mother's house for Christmas. On the unpleasantly eventful train trip from London to Canterbury, Joe finds himself embroiled in a treacherous plot involving a glamorous, crimson-lipped woman with a basket of glowing-eyed creatures and with a mysterious viper doodled on his suitcase. Add a terrifying ride through the countryside on a large orange bewitched tricycle, a headlong plunge into the aforementioned coven, a blossoming friendship with a young witch-in-training named Twiggy, and the troubling mystery of the missing, potentially-perilous-if-located page 513 in the revered witch manual Mabel's Book, and the ingredients for an action adventure are complete. Plenty of potions (Lingo Liquorice for talking to animals!) and plot twists keep the story buoyant, and abundant acts of selfless bravery contribute a sweet, uplifting quality that distinguishes this lightning-quick broomstick ride, British-style. (Fiction. 9-12)
Booklist
"Tightly plotted and with enough twists and turns to keep readers on their toes."

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781400090846
Publisher:
Random House Audio Publishing Group
Publication date:
10/12/2004
Edition description:
Unabridged, 2 Cassettes, 3 hrs.
Product dimensions:
4.50(w) x 7.00(h) x 1.14(d)
Age Range:
10 - 12 Years

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