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Thomas Wildus and the Book of Sorrows by J M…
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Thomas Wildus and the Book of Sorrows

by J M Bergen

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Move over Percy and Harry, Thomas Wildus is da house! Welcome to a new world of magic, mystery, and delight!

Join Thomas Wildus, eponymous lead of Bergen's Thomas Wildus & the Book of Sorrows, as this young boy begins the adventure of a lifetime. And it all starts with a mysterious bookshop, of course! That, and the cryptic last words Thomas’ father ever said to him.

Magic is real, Thomas. No matter what happens, always remember that. Magic is real. ~John Wildus, Thomas Wildus & the Book of Sorrows

Returning home from school one day, Thomas stumbled across a bookshop he'd never seen before. H&A Booksellers, Purveyors of Fine Books and Rare Manuscripts. It is here that Thomas finally finds a real magic book. Huxley, the proprietor, loans Thomas the book- giving him several rules to follow with regard to being its custodian. In return, Thomas will donate 5 hrs of his time weekly, helping out in the bookstore, until he's finished with the book.

Read it alone
Keep it secret (keep it safe, haha. True though)
Read only one chapter at a time and never more than a chapter a day.

Things begin changing almost immediately for Thomas- he gets learn real magick! At least, he hopes so. It also opens up a nice can of worms, as people begin stalking him. After confiding in his best friend, Enrique, about the book, Thomas finds himself kidnapped and whisked away. To China. Here he learns more about magick and his own family that he ever thought possible.

Oh, but I loved this story! It was so much fun! There was a lot of snarky commentary, like the Percy Jackson books. The whole aspect of having the inner potential for magic awakened/ measured using a book that told of one of the first wizards was pretty cool. The more a person reads, and the greater the potential, the faster the cover becomes illuminated, as in an old manuscript's illumination. That kinda also reminded me of The Neverending Story by Michael Ende, both the illumination and the penchant for magic.

Thomas’ best friend Enrique is hilarious! They have an ongoing 'doodle war’ at school, which often gets them in trouble. The goal is to create a drawing that makes other person laugh as quickly as possible. Enrique has a greater part to play and I'm really interested to see where his story goes. Thomas too. His last name, and its origin are pretty cool. So were the quantum physics notions underlying magic and how it works. Makes it almost seem that if we ourselves had a greater understanding of those mechanics, we might be able to do magic ourselves.

Overall, a great read, perfect for fans of Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, and related series. Highly recommended!

***Many thanks to Netgalley and Elandrian Press for providing an ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review. Reviewed for the San Francisco Book Review. ( )
  PardaMustang | Jan 15, 2019 |
I’ve read a few Middle grade books with the theme of magical crystals and I’m always amazed how authors can write such diverse stories with the same basic theme; our protagonist must get to the crystals before the antagonist and thus save the world. Bergen has come up with an original take on this tried and true theme.

Thomas Wildus and the Book of Sorrows is a magical story filled with peril and friendship.

Thomas is an ordinary twelve year old who loves to read books about magic until one day he is given not a book about magic but a magical book. His father’s parting words ring in his ears “Magic is real, Thomas. No matter what happens, always remember that magic is real.”

The story starts with the everyday life of Thomas Wildus. He goes to school, hangs out with best friend Enrique, has problems with the school bully and has a crush on a pretty girl in his grade.

After Thomas receives the book the story changes to one of mystery, danger and suspense.

There is a slow build up to the main revelations about Tomas and his mission. The explanation of the magic and quantum physics was a bit long however the story kept my interest.

Overall Thomas Wildus and the Book of Sorrows was a good read filled with danger, suspense and magic. Thomas was a modest hero and a good role model. ( )
  Ronnie293 | Dec 31, 2018 |
I was given this book in exchange for an honest review by the author J.M. Bergen, through NetGalley. I was more than happy to post my review, here on LibraryThing.
In Thomas Wildus and The Book of Sorrows, the author J.M. Bergen has written a wonderful fantasy/sci-fi story for children and teens. With all the qualities of a cross between Harry Potter, and Percy Jackson, I was instantly hooked. From the first page, I followed Thomas on his adventure, turning page after page, and not wanting to close the book till the end. Mr Bergen has created a real gem of a book, one that I know will delight children, teens, (and adults), of all ages. When the second book comes out, I will definitely be one of the first to buy it! ( )
  seascape | Dec 23, 2018 |
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