Tuesday, February 12, 2013


MagicalamitySaunders, Kate. Magicalamity. 
11 December 2012, Delacorte
Book received from Young Adults Books Central and reviewed there.

Tom had no idea at all that he was a demisprite until he wakes up and finds that his father, Jonas, has been arrested by the fairies for the murder of Milly Falconer and taken back into the Realm. Tom's mother is being hidden in a jar of tomatoes, and one of Tom's fairy godmothers, Lorna, has come to take care of him. Lorna is bound and determined to help Tom get his father free, but she has to call his other two godmothers, Iris (who has been hypnotizing the girls in the school she runs to steal for her) and Dahlia (who has hypnotized twelve former husbands to be her slaves) in order to do this. Also on the scene is Pindar, Tom's cousin, whose father is the one who is ruling the Realm and who wants the land that Jonas owns. Acting on a dream about his mother, who tells him that Milly is "just like Snow White", Tom et al. travel into the realm to steal Milly in her glass coffin. When they come back to the mortal world, the coffin breaks-- and they find out that Milly is still alive! This puts Jonas' arrest in a whole new light, but innocence is not enough in a fairy world gone awry. Soon, it is clear to Tom that his newly discovered fairy heritage is in danger, and working with his motley crew of new friends, he tries to save both his father and the Realm.
Strengths: Very British fantasy romp that plunges right into an improbable world with no apologies but plenty of tea and beans on toast! I liked Tom and his willingness to believe his godmothers, and I especially liked his cousin Pindar, who was discarded by his evil family and just wants to help his new found cousin. I saved this one for a leisurely read on a snowy Friday evening, and it was great fun. I did adore Saunders' other book, Beswitched.
Weaknesses: I could have done without all of the nudity once the group gets to the Realm. The Nude Ball was bad enough, but then the lawyers in the trial are also nude. It's explained that this is a sign of status, and perhaps this played for laughs better in a country where people's bare backsides get shown on television, but it's a weird thing to include here in the states.

Even though I read this one slowly, I must have been tired and missed some things. Please look at Kiss The Book's review of this-- I totally missed the sexual innuendo, and was thinking the gun under the pillow was a magical one.


Katie Fitzgerald said...

I have this book in my stash at the library where I work, but I'm not a big fantasy reader so I keep skipping over it in favor of realistic fiction. Now I kind of want to read it just to understand better why there is so much nudity! Thanks for the review.

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