THE FAMILIARS (Animal Wizardry) by Adam Jay Epstein & Andrew Jacobson
(US version is called The Familiars #1)
Publisher: Harper Collins
Release date: 30th September 2010
Review format: Paperback
Goodreads Synopsis: After three young wizard apprentices are kidnapped by the evil queen of a distant land, it is up to their familiars, their magical animal companions - a street smart alley cat, a precocious blue jay and a bumbling tree frog - to save them.
My thoughts: This book is recommended 9+, so more of a childrens book really than Young Adult. But saying that, it was a really fun and exciting read even for me as an adult! Aldwyn the alley cat, Gilbert the tree frog and Skylar the blue jay were gorgeous and made great main characters. The humans (or loyals as they are called in the book) only really took part at the beginning and end of the story.
Humour abound, mostly caused by Gilbert and his very clumsy ways (I loved this little tree frog) found me laughing out loud on numerous occasions and when the tension heightenend I just couldn't put this down. A great plot with non-stop animal action. I can say hand on heart that there wasn't a boring page in this book.
A special little treat I found are the lovely ink drawings at the beginning of each chapter and also dotted around on different pages. The first one I saw was a little fly on page 10 and it took a second or two for my mind to register that it wasn't real. I actually thought someone has squashed a fly in the book!
I can't wait until my son is old enough for me to read this one aloud to him.
My rating: 5 stars