Published by Capstone Young Readers on March 1st, 2014
Number of Pages: 240
Genres: Adventure, Fantasy, Young Adult
Purchase: At Amazon
The first few chapters tell how the main character, Finley hates school and reading. He manages to fail and be told he has to repeat his grade because he's had so many absences due to skipping school to go fishing. Finley's father asks the Reverend of the local church to find Finley a job for the summer that he will hate, in the hopes of bringing the lesson home that going to school was far better than not going.
While delivering mail for the post office, he meets a strange girl called Aiby Lily. She and her father are full of mysteries, and driven by curiosity he soon becomes friends with her. Each time he talks to her, he learns about a different magical item or more about her family and the Enchanted Emporium. Can he help to keep Aiby and the Emporium safe?
There are lots of neat black and white illustrations in this book. I’m not sure if the eBook version has them or not, as my copy is a hardback. It kept my attention throughout the book, and Finley seemed to be in character for a 13 year old boy. More interested in fishing and mysteries than in school. Most of the book is getting to know the characters and figuring out mysteries. It sounds like a slow or boring read, but the way everything came together actually made the book go fast.
It’s also told from Finley’s point of view, so if that bothers you you may want to skip this book. I was a bit disappointed because reading the official summary on the back, I was expecting more. It makes it seem as though a big part of the book is going to be magical adventure and getting one over on the bad guys. This happened, but was only a fairly minor part of the book. At least to me, it seemed more like an introduction to the series, and I hope the other books are more fleshed-out. I will most likely be picking up the 2nd book in the series. This is listed as a children’s book, and for the few faults I mentioned, I still liked it.