The Crooked Sixpence

The Crooked Sixpence

Book - 2016
Average Rating:
4
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Ivy Sparrow and her big brother Seb discover a city beneath London where ordinary objects have magical powers.
Publisher: New York : Crown Books for Young Readers, [2016]
Edition: First Edition
ISBN: 9780553498431
0553498436
Branch Call Number: Ju F Bel

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JCLChrisK Aug 10, 2017

The story starts in the back of a rushing ambulance during a medical emergency and never slows down. Ivy and Seb get their granma to the hospital then leave, only to find her house has been ransacked. Before they can figure that out, strangely dressed men appear at the door and threaten to arrest them. A stranger helps them steal away--by magically transporting them into an underground realm where the dead walk, the authorities pursue them, and the darkest forces are holding their parents for ransom under threat of death. All while the siblings have no idea what is going on, scrambling from one situation to the next while trying to make sense of it all.

This is a fun and inventive adventure featuring resourceful young characters and an intriguing mythology. 3.5 stars.

KCLS_RobinH May 01, 2017

This book began with more promise than it showed by the end. A mashup of Harry Potter, Diana Wynne Jones, and a heap of Tim Burton, it tried to be too many things at once, and not too subtly as it did. However, I hope that this brother-sister kid team with a newly-discovered inherited ability to use common objects for their magical powers (beware of toilet brushes throwing sparks, and grab a buckled belt when you need to float out of a tunnel) will have more good stories to embrace in this continued series. The Races of the Dead may show us a few surprises!

storytimekelly Mar 05, 2017

While this is no Harry Potter, it is certainly enough of a read-alike to please kids who love adventure, magic, and young characters with the gumption and courage to take on the bad guys. A shrewder reader may be turned off by how many parallels can be drawn between J.K. Rowling's masterpiece and Bell's lesser universe, but it should satisfy most. The magical world is alive with fun details and the reader will root for the likeable characters. An advanced first or second grader might enjoy this read, save for the sometimes truly scary scenes. I would recommend this to fans of this genre, grades 3-5.

JCLHilaryS Mar 01, 2017

The first in a new series about enchanted items and worlds hidden from common view. Ivy and Seb Sparrow are thrown into a previously unknown world, where everything seems unbelievable. Unsure who or what to trust, Ivy and Seb must navigate Lundinor and unravel the mystery surrounding their grandmother, who has no memory of her life before a car accident in 1969. While everyday items take on properties that seem magical, Ivy soon learns the truth behind their unusual abilities, and learns of the darker side of Lundinor history. When their parents are captured and held as ransom, Ivy and Seb must pick up the pace, but multiple undead creatures and hidden identities put them at risk of not only failing to unravel the mystery surrounding their grandmother, but of losing their parents or even their own lives.

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