“The Grand Tour” and “The Mislaid Magician” – My How Time Flies!

Book Review: The Grand Tour
By Patricia C. Wrede and Caroline Stevermer

Spoiler Alert!

Screen shot 2015-01-03 at 5.42.06 PM  Summary Kate and Cecy and their new husbands, Thomas and James, are off on a leisurely tour of the Continent. But once they arrive in France, strange things start to happen. Cecy receives a mysterious package, Thomas’s valet is assaulted, and Kate loses a glove. Soon it becomes clear that the newlyweds have stumbled upon a magical plot to take over Europe, and they must embark on a daring chase to thwart the evil conspiracy. There’s likely more trouble ahead–for when you mix Kate and Cecy and magic, who knows what’s going to happen next!     Adult Point of View The Grand Tour has a very different feeling than Sorcery and Cecilia because the women and their husbands are traveling together rather than having the novel move forward through correspondence between the cousins. Instead, Kate and Cecy are writing to people back home and in their personal journals. I still enjoyed the book, but it didn’t feel as fresh and new. You will definitely want to read the first book prior to this one. My mother, on the other hand, liked this one even more. Probably because the tour reminded her of her own travels. She also said it was less confusing.

3.5 out of 5 stars


Book Review : The Mislaid Magician; or Ten Years After

By Patricia C. Wrede and Caroline Stevermer

Spoiler Alert!

 SummaryScreen shot 2015-01-04 at 6.24.03 PM

Ten years have passed since Kate and Cecy married Thomas and James, and England is now being transformed by the first railways. When the Duke of Wellington asks James to look into the sudden disappearance of a German railway engineer, James and Cecy’s search reveals a shocking truth …

The railway lines are wreaking havoc with ancient underground magical ley lines, which could endanger the very unity of England. Meanwhile, Kate has her hands full taking care of all their children, not to mention the mysterious mute girl Drina, rescued from a kidnapper! The letters between Kate and Cecy, and between their husbands, blend magic, mystery, adventure, humor, and romance. (Courtesy of goodread.com) Adult Point of View The cousins are separated to solve this mystery of the missing magician. Cecy and her husband, James, play the larger role in the mystery and politics. Kate has ended up taking care of all the children while Thomas tries to escape the domestic uproar. I like the format with the women writing to each other along with their husbands’ pragmatic letters. Cecy continues to be spirited and Kate learns her powers are more extensive than she expected. I almost hate to tell you this, but I did find Kate a little boring. Perhaps, she is drawn to closely to my own life to seem novel. The ley lines were a new twist and the transfer of the magical spell. I also liked the character, Drina, she was so very stoic. The children were fun and mischievious, much like their mothers might have been. Overall it was a satisfying conclusion. My favorite book in the series was the first.

3.75 of 5 stars

– Michelle

If you can’t get enough of this series Caroline Stevermer has written a children’s book, Magic Below Stairs, that would be book 2 1/2 in the series if placed sequentially.

Screen shot 2015-01-04 at 6.51.39 PM
Young Frederick is plucked from an orphanage to be a footboy for a wizard named Lord Schofield in Victorian England. Is his uncanny ability to tie perfect knots and render boots spotless a sign of his own magical talent, or the work of Billy Bly, the brownie who has been secretly watching over him since he was little? No matter, for the wizard has banished all magical creatures from his holdings. But Billy Bly isn?t going anywhere, and when he discovers a curse upon the manor house, it?s up to Frederick and Billy Bly to keep the lord?s new baby safe and rid the Schofield family of the curse forever.
 (Courtesy of goodread.com)
Adult Point of View
I thought Fredrick was a fun character because he had such high values. He reminded me of Sarah Crewe from A Little Princess in a strange way. I had this connection in mind because I had recently reread the classic with Sarah as a servant who is better than her circumstances. In this case, Fredrick eventually discovers that Lord Schofield is not a magical monster and is very interested in him and his special talents. It is a tale of growing up and hope with a dash of magic.
3.75 of 5 stars 3-half-star-hotel – Michelle

About Tales Untangled

I am a mother of four children and have a passion for reading. I love sharing my treasury of books with my kids. I also do experiments in cooking which includes such things as Indian Tandoori Chicken slow-cooked in a tagine. I write stories and illustrate in ink.
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2 Responses to “The Grand Tour” and “The Mislaid Magician” – My How Time Flies!

  1. I really need to read The Grand Tour. I liked Sorcery and Cecelia so much. But I can see how this one would have a different feel, since they aren’t writing to each other.

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