Sunday, April 14, 2013

Review: Stolen Magic - Stephanie Burgis

Stolen Magic by Stephanie Burgis
Series: The Unladylike Adventures of Kat Stephenson #3
Genre: Middle Grade, historical fantasy
Published on April 2, 2013
Published by Atheneum Books
Pages: 400
Read From: 4.8.13 - 4.10.13

With just days to go before her sister Angeline's long-delayed wedding to Frederick Carlyle, the impetuous Kat Stephenson has resigned herself to good behavior. But Kat's initiation into the magical Order of the Guardians is fast approaching, and trouble seems to follow her everywhere. 
First, Kat must contend with the wretched Mrs. Carlyle's attempts to humiliate her sister; the arrival of the mysterious Marquise de Valmont, who bears suspicious resemblance to Kat's late mother; and Frederick's bewitching cousin Jane, who has Charles Stephenson tripping over his feet. 
But when a menacing boy with powerful magic starts hunting Kat, a dastardly villain tries to kill Angeline, and the Guardians face a magical robbery that could spell the end of their Order, propriety becomes the least of Kat's concerns. Can Kat save her sister's life, the Order of the Guardians, and England itself before it's too late?


Cover Blurb: Yes or No? Yes. I don't mind the character impersonators because I love the illustrations, and Kat's little smirk of mischief. They're really pretty, cute covers.

Characters: Kat Stephenson continues to be a completely awesome protagonist: witty, adventurous, feisty, quick to act (which usually ends with disastrous results, but it makes the story more exciting), and sharp as a tack. She causes a lot of problems for her family, but never her own, and she has the best of intentions, and even for all of her mistakes and blunders, it's difficult to dislike Kat. Mrs. Carlyle and the other Carlyle relatives had me laughing endlessly; they were so horrible, and I felt sorry for Angeline for having to deal with them, but they were perfect for the story. Jane Carlyle, Frederick's cousin, was a new favorite, though. She was just awesome, the way she always cut off Mrs. Carlyle and how improper she really was, even though she appeared perfectly prim. I was glad she and Frederick had such a wonderful friendship. The Marquise de Valmont is equally amazing, and though I was able to figure out who she was in short order, I still loved her.

The Romance: Charles is sweet on Jane Carlyle, and Jane is sweet on Charles. It makes for funny little episodes, and I both felt sorry for Charles and couldn't help but laugh. Even Kat starts to get a bit of a crush on someone, but it doesn't happen until the very end of the book, and I actually liked it. It was cute.

Plot: Angeline is finally getting married to Frederick Carlyle! Or is she? She still has to brave the hundreds of Carlyle relatives, Mrs. Carlyle's continued campaign against her, and now someone actually wants to kill Angeline! Between that and trying to dodge Charles, who has suddenly turned into the responsible older brother, Kat is kept completely on her toes. To top it all off, her initiation into the Order of the Guardians is interrupted when a bunch of magical portals are stolen, and now Kat has her very own stalker who means her - and the Order - harm. It's enough to drive anyone batty, but not Kat. Stolen Magic is more like Kat, Incorrigible, in the fact that events aren't quite as dramatic, and I liked that. Like with all of the books, though, this one has a good mix of humor and seriousness. I enjoyed reading about the predicaments with the Carlyles and the more serious threat of Kat's mysterious follower and the magical theft. There were times that I was even a little uncertain how things would go.

Believability: Not really applicable, though I will say that the Author has clearly paid great attention to the social customs and propriety of the era.

Writing Style: Very funny, as usual. Kat has a wonderful narration voice, and while the dialogue is sometimes a bit modern, the majority of it has the appropriate tone for the time period, and also has a very distinct tinge of Jane Austen. Probably one of my favorite things about all three of the books are how memorable the opening sentences are.

Content: None.

Conclusion: The showdown between Kat and the villain is rather cliche, but it somehow worked. The climax itself was properly dramatic, but not over the top, and there were a few last minute twists that were very awesome. I really, really hope that Stolen Magic will not be the last Kat Stephenson adventure after all - I wish that very hard, - but if it is, then it is a perfect end. Though, I must admit, I really would like to know about the mischief Kat gets into in Scotland.

Recommended Audience: Girl-read, any age, perfect for Jane Austen fans who enjoy a bit of magic.

Others in The Unladylike Adventures of Kat Stephenson:
1)Kat, Incorrigible
2)Renegade Magic
3)Stolen Magic

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for visiting The Reading Hedgehog! The hedgie and I love hearing from our readers, so please feel free to leave a comment or question! I always try to reply within a day or two. Please keep all comments civil and clean.