children's books, Fantasy, reviews

Review: Magickeepers Book 1: The Eternal Hourglass

Magickeepers Book 1: The Eternal Hourglass
Erica Kirov
256 pages
Publication Date: May 1, 2009
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Source: Publisher

Nick Rostov is a young boy who’s life is about to change. He lives in a rundown casino with his father, the worst magician in Las Vegas. Tired of moving from place to place and school to school, Nick’s glad that summer is finally here. He doesn’t have to worry about making friends or being the new kid. On his thirteenth birthday, Nick is whisked away from his father and sent to live with his mother’s family, one of the most powerful magical families in the world. It’s then that Nick discovers he has powers of his own and must help his family find a hourglass that can stop time before it gets into the wrong hands.

Does this sound a little familiar? A boy with magical powers whose life changes at thirteen? Whose mother died protecting him from evil? I couldn’t help but notice the similarities between Nick Rostov and Harry Potter. Sometimes these similarities had me asking more questions which don’t get answered like why did Nick had to be told he had magical powers instead of him accidently finding out?

The good thing about this book is that even with the similarities, Magickeepers is a great book for kids to read. It takes Nick awhile to adjust to his strange Russian family, all of whom he didn’t know existed before he was sent to them. He doesn’t like the weird food or going to school during summer break but he loves using magic and finding a place that he really belongs. The book also gives history lessons on Russian history using figures like Rasputin and the Grand Duchess Anastasia while using American figures like Harry Houdini.

I found Magickeepers to be a book that kept me turning pages. The plot didn’t lag and I wasn’t ever bored. Once I started reading, I didn’t stop until the final page.

I think this is a great book for kids who haven’t started the Harry Potter series yet and are starting to read thicker books.

6 thoughts on “Review: Magickeepers Book 1: The Eternal Hourglass”

  1. Like you, I saw many similarities between this and the other magical boy book, but like you, I loved the addition of Rasputin. I’m a sucker for Russian characters anyway.

  2. I just reviewed a book that sounds similar to this one. It was called Candleman, and it was targeted towards the 11-13 year old sector. I really enjoyed that one, and it sounds like this one might be fun as well. I am glad you enjoyed it, even if it was a bit derivative!

  3. I see the connection to Harry Potter. I guess there are only so many original ideas out there? But the book sounds like a good one and kids of a certain age who haven’t read Harry Potter won’t see or be bothered by the similarities. I have to say I just love the cover art on these.

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