Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Book Review: Kingston and the Magician's Lost and Found

Happy Tuesday! I didn't get near enough reading done this weekend, but fortunately I finished this on Friday, so hopefully I can really get myself motivated this week to keep myself on track. 

Kingston and the Magician's Lost and Found - Rucker Moses and Theo Gangi

Kingston has just moved from the suburbs back to Echo City, Brooklyn--the last place his father was seen alive. Kingston's father was King Preston, one of the world's greatest magicians. Until one trick went wrong and he disappeared. Now that Kingston is back in Echo City, he's determined to find his father. Somehow, though, when his father disappeared, he took all of Echo City's magic with him. Now Echo City--a ghost of its past--is living up to its name. With no magic left, the magicians have packed up and left town and those who've stayed behind don't look too kindly on any who reminds them of what they once had. When Kingston finds a magic box his father left behind as a clue, Kingston knows there's more to his father's disappearance than meets the eye. He'll have to keep it a secret--that is, until he can restore magic to Echo City. With his cousin Veronica and childhood friend Too Tall Eddie, Kingston works to solve the clues, but one wrong move and his father might not be the only one who goes missing. 
I feel like I have already read more middle grade books in 2021 than I did in all of 2020... but maybe not. I don't know, but this was pretty fun. I think my son would have totally loved this a few years ago, and it was definitely a quick read. Even better? This book features a strong, intelligent, and diverse cast of characters, in a not-used-enough setting of Brooklyn, New York. It's exactly the kind of book we need on library and classroom shelves. 

The hard thing about reading and reviewing middle grade as a grownup, a mom no less, is that the choices characters make often drive me nuts. I also realize that these are children making the choices so they are bound to be dumb, but King makes some pretty cringeworthy decisions so that drove me a little batty. I'm not big on fantasy and such, so I can't tell you how well that aspect was done, though I will say I didn't totally understand the "echoes". I am fully cognizant that I am old and uncool, so take that with a grain of salt. I really loved the greater story of loss and grief, especially for this age group, which I think is such an important topic to normalize in middle grade books. 

I also had a hard time because in some parts King is in the now and present, but then he's in a different realm. Full disclosure though, this isn't because of poor writing, it is completely because I have a hard time with following that thanks to cognitive impairment. The book started slow, but once I got the rhythm of the writing and the story, I felt like it took off for me. Overall, this was fun and definitely different from my usual fare, but I'm glad I gave it a try. It's a solid 3 for me. 

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1 comment:

Shooting Stars Mag said...

Thanks for sharing! I do really love MG and want to read keep reading more of it. Sorry this wasn't a LOVE but it sounds like a good one overall. I really appreciate diverse characters too.