So, you’ve been yearning for some new kid fiction with a bit of a Harry Potter vibe, huh? Well, we might be able to point you toward the right splash of fantasy adventure. Our Plugged In Pick for this week is a book called Amari and the Night Brothers.
This New York Times bestseller weaves a magic-filled story that very much feels like a youthful cross between a Harry Potter book and the movie Men in Black. But this isn’t a tale all about scores of fun, magic-casting magicians with wands and broom sticks. In fact, your run-of-the-mill magician in this story is generally considered to be a pretty bad guy.
But then young Amari, a fairly average girl who struggles with fairly average real-world stuff, discovers that she’s got magic flowing in her blood. Not only that, but there are all sorts of magical critters hidden away in the world around her—such as fairies, unicorns and Yetis—that she didn’t even believe existed. And now it’s up to her to use whatever skills she can muster to go find her long-lost brother who’s been kidnapped by one of those evil magicians.
Yes, there’s definitely magic use afoot here. Those who blanch at even the lightest of that stuff should stay away (and always check out our full review, of course). But this fast-paced and well-written tale also comes packing some nice lessons about the nasty impact of bullying, prejudice and racism. And overall, it’s good fun.