The magic of friendship ...


After running away from a group of bullies who took her favorite pen, Nita Callahan finds herself in the stacks at the library. She comes across a title, So You Want to Be a Wizard. Surprised by the title, she checks it out and starts reading. The book is filled with detailed instructions and several spells, too. Nita wants to protect herself and the book, so she only reads it in her secret places. She takes the Oath to become a wizard, practices some of the preliminary exercises, and before long she can speak with trees (and they with her)!

One day she takes the book to another of her secret places: an underpass under the freeway. As she gets to her spot, she finds a boy there. Meet Kit, another fellow wizard. The two quickly bond over their magic and explore New York. They discover the power of books and the wizarding lifestyle in this extremely quirky, but loveable world. They also collaborate on a spell to help Nita retrieve her favorite pen from the bullies. In gaining the power to find her pen, they also witness a foreboding image of the future and sense a malevolent spirit. Once they break out of the spell, they speak to a celestial being named Fred and their adventure begins.

BTSYA / Teen Reader (Age 16):
(Age 16) I recommend this book to all ages. The clear sentences and simple dialogue make it a suitable read for those ten and older. When I first read this book the details completely immersed me in the world. Reading it several years later, I am still convinced Duane’s writing makes readers believe in the world of wizardry. This book is the first of series, and the following books continue to preserve the magic and adventure raised in the first book.

Reader Enjoyment Factors:

Fun, adventurous and wholesome. A magic spell of a book!

Content Awareness Factors:

Absolutely none.

Type of Book:
This is the first title in a magical adventure series. It will appeal to pre-teens and teens alike.
Educational Themes:

What would you want to do as your first act of wizardry? What spells would you want to learn. Ask your young readers these questions before you read, and then again after. Based on what they learned from Nita and Kit, what would they do differently (if anything).

Reading Level:
Recommended Age To Read By Yourself:
11 and Up
Recommended Age To Read Together:
10 and Up
Age of child:
Teen STAR Review Team, Be the Star You Are!™ . Reviewer age: 16
Purchase Recommendation:
Buy. This is an adventure you're going to want to follow, and young readers will return to for memories and clues.

Title So You Want to Be a Wizard

Young Wizard Series, Book 1

Author Diane Duane
Publisher HMH Books for Young Readers © 2001
ISBN 9780152162504
Material Hard Cover
Cost $7.99
Genres Adventure, Fantasy, Science Fiction
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