Series: The Land of Stories #1
Author: Chris Colfer
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: July 17, 2012
Genres: fantasy, fiction, magic
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Alex and Conner Bailey's world is about to change, in this fast-paced adventure that uniquely combines our modern day world with the enchanting realm of classic fairy tales.The Land of Stories tells the tale of twins Alex and Conner. Through the mysterious powers of a cherished book of stories, they leave their world behind and find themselves in a foreign land full of wonder and magic where they come face-to-face with the fairy tale characters they grew up reading about. But after a series of encounters with witches, wolves, goblins, and trolls alike, getting back home is going to be harder than they thought.
New twists on some old favourites as well as an adventure to tie them all together sums up The Wishing Spell fairly well.
Okay, I will admit that being a fan of Glee (or at least the first 3 seasons) that the fact that Chris Colfer wrote this book was one of the main reasons why I wanted to read it. But I am glad that I did because it was actually not a bad read. One has to keep in mind though that it is written for (and certainly aimed towards) junior readers.
So to get the bad stuff out of the way first – the prose was a bit clunky and you were definitely being told how the characters felt and what they thought in a very obvious fashion. There wasn’t as much detail as one would perhaps like, and certainly there could have been more descriptive adverbs and things, but honestly for the age of reader it’s aimed at, it wasn’t that much of an issue.
My main issue was more the ‘this is the correct way to interpret fairy tales and the lessons from them’ vibe than the writing. It was annoying and vaguely insulting to essentially be told that the way you had interpreted fairy tales was wrong.
One really interesting thing about this book was the way the fairy tales were linked together – it made sense without being completely far-fetched in most cases. The Red Riding Hood thing was weird – you’ll understand when you read the book.
Overall however, for a light read and an different interpretation of the fairytale world, this was a good book. I would definitely recommend it for junior readers as because unlike some ‘junior’ novels, this was easy to read, and there was nothing super scary or hard to understand within the pages of the story.