Twelve-year-old Lennie Mercado loves magic. She practices her invisibility powers all the time (she can now stay invisible for fifteen seconds!), and she dreams of the day that she can visit her grandfather, the Prime Wizard de Pomporromp, at his magical estate.
Now Lennie has her chance. Poppop has decided to retire, and his grandchildren are coming from all over to compete in Wizardmatch. The winner inherits his title, his castle, and every single one of his unlimited magical powers. The losers get nothing. Lennie is desperate to win, but when Poppop creates a new rule to quelch any sibling rivalry, her thoughts turn from winning Wizardmatch to sabotaging it...even if it means betraying her family.
Comedic, touching, and page-turny, Wizardmatch is perfect for fans of Mr. Lemoncello's Library, The Gollywopper Games, and The Candymakers.
|Publisher:||Penguin Young Readers Group|
|Product dimensions:||5.80(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.20(d)|
|Age Range:||8 - 12 Years|
About the Author
Read an Excerpt
An Ill-Conceived Decision
Mortimer de Pomporromp—the oldest, most powerful, most celebrated wizard in his entire family—had the sniffles.
He groaned as he rolled over in bed, his back cracking and muscles aching as he reached for the staff propped up against his nightstand. With one tap of that magical stick against the floor, Mortimer could summon a whole factory of tissues. Which was just what his runny nose needed.
Almost, almost . . .
He stretched out his arm. His fingers closed around the staff, and his nose twitched. Already, it was too late to summon a box of tissues—they’d never reach him in time. He banged his staff on the floor just before . . .
“Ah—Ah—ACHOO!!!!!!!!!” Mortimer sneezed. Only instead of snot, chocolate pudding came flying out of his nostrils. It sailed across the room and landed with asplat all over the floor.
Footsteps clomped up the stairwell to his bedchamber; moments later the door burst open, and his assistant, Estella, blew into the room, waving a piece of parchment in the air. “Mortimer de Pomporromp, what in heaven’s name is this preposterous memo you just—”
“WATCH,” Mortimer cried, trying to warn her. But it was too late: Estella slipped on the puddle of pudding-snot, flipped backward, and landed flat on her back.
Mortimer cringed as his assistant lay in the goop. It was sticking to her corkscrew curls, crusting on her brown skin, and was most certainly going to stain her lilac pantsuit.
“I’ve always wanted a booger bath, thank you,” Estella said drily.
“Be thankful I had time to bewitch it!”
Estella glared at him as she wrung out her hair. “Yes, I’m thanking my lucky stars.”
Mortimer turned to look out the window. It was a soggy, stormy day, filled with the crackles of lightning and the rumblings of thunder. Just like the stormy rumblings inside his soul. Of course, it wasn’t coincidence; he controlled the weather with his magic . . . but still.
“This crazy memo!” Estella said. “Are we going to discuss it?”
“Woe is me, I’m sick!”Mortimer complained. “Life is horrible! Awful, just awful! Dreadfully appallingly grievously monstrously tragically shuddersome. Beastly and ghastly and rotten—”
“Stop being so dramatic,” Estella said, and she whacked him with a pillow. “You just have a head cold.”
“WOE!” Mortimer wailed. He thrashed beneath his fuzzy blankets and held on to his stuffed animal for comfort, which—despite being filled with cotton—was a much better companion than Estella in times of distress. True, Estella was a loyal assistant, but in the twenty years she’d been by his side, she remained rather unconcerned with his emotional turmoil.
“All your complaining won’t get you out of talking about this.” She laid the parchment on his chest.To Estella, please inform my children (Lacey, Tracy, Stacey, Macy, Philip #1, Philip #2, Philip #3, and Bob) that I am stepping down from the post of Prime Wizard, Earl of Pomporromp, Viscount of Netherly. I will host a Wizardmatch competition among my grandchildren to find the next successor. It was written in his own handwriting, smudged a bit because he was a leftie.
“ARE WE GOING TO DISCUSS THIS OR NOT?” Estella said.
“Alas, the end of my days is near!” Mortimer moaned. “I see a bright light!”
“Shall I turn off the lamp above your bed?”
“Not that bright light! The other one! The deadly one! I shall never recover!”
Estella sighed. “You say thatevery year when you get a cold. And every year you recover just fine.”
“Will you plan my funeral, youthful Estella?”
“Mortimer, you are fine. Other than beingmelodramatic and ridiculous—”
“My dear! Do not speak ill of the ill!”
Estella sighed and sat on the side of his bed. “Are you sure you’re ready to pass on your powers? It’s a big decision to step down, and I don’t want you to take this lightly.”
“Lightly! Lightly! Why, it’s the heaviest decision I’ve made in my life! Nothing shall compare to this incessant skirmish between my brain and my heart! Why, the inner agony I’ve had to endure—”
He waved his hand. “Estella, I came into my position at the age of twelve. Most of my grandchildren are between the ages of seven and fourteen. Icould wait to hold Wizardmatch. But I don’t want to. Whoever is going to be the next Prime Wizard of Pomporromp is going to need at least ten years to study under me. I want to leave enough time for years of thorough training . . . and time enough to retire somewhere south and warm before my bones become brittle and frail and infirm—”
“Mortimer,” she said with a sigh. Then she rested a hand on his own. “This isn’t just because you’re feeling sick, right? This is something you truly want to do?”
“This is no snap decision, Estella.” He puffed his chest out. “Sir Mortimer de Pomporromp, Prime Wizard, Earl of this castle, Viscount of Netherly does notmake hasty decisions.”
“If you say so,” Estella said, unconvinced.
But it didn’t matter what his assistant thought—he knewin his bones (his nearly infirm bones) that it was time to have another Wizardmatch. Time to put his grandchildren through the ultimate test. The one winner would take it all: his land, his title, his castle. And most of all: his unlimited magical powers.
Mortimer tugged on his floor-length beard and said, “May the best kin win.”