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Author: Townley, Roderick
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Year Published: Nov 10, 2015
ISBN: 978-0449816493
Grades: Grade 3, Grade 4, Grade 5, Grade 6, Grade 7

Bitter Magic

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As we grow up we have to decide whether we are successors to our parents and family, conforming to the standards of the family name, or whether we are our own person, distinct from those who bore us, and able to forge a different path in life.
Cisley Thummel’s resemblance to her mother is striking they say – but Cisley’s mother was extravagant, mysterious and disappeared in a flash of light one day on stage, while Cisley considers herself plain, without great magic, and boring. She lives with her governess, Mrs.Pollock, and her uncle Asa who is obsessed with jealously for his disappeared sister, desperately trying to gain the magic she had for himself. But Cisley’s mother has a plan to come back from wherever she magicked herself to, a plan involving her daughter, a black rose, mirrors aplenty and a lobster on a golden leash. The problem is the Cisley has discovered a world outside the glass castle she lives in, friends among the villagers and gypsies, and is not sure she wants to play the pawn to her mother and uncle’s games anymore.
Roderick Townley creates a fantasy for young readers that strays from the normal mythical and fairy tale path, instead going down the weird and strange path of stage magic. A great book to add variety and spice to your fantasy section, Bitter Magic is sure to please those children who aren’t interested in ‘normal’ fantasy



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