Review: The Mage and the Magpie (Magemother #1) by Austin J. Bailey

The Mage and the Magpie by Austin J. Bailey

An invisible girl. A missing mage. A world in need…

Brinley has spent most of her life lost in her own imagination, teaching bullfrogs to do gymnastics and pretending to be invisible. Now, when a magic bell from another world summons her across time and space on a journey to find her mother, she will discover real friendship, face true evil, and overcome her greatest fears in order to save the ones she loves.

The Mage and the Magpie is the first book in Austin J. Bailey's Magemother series: an epic middle-grade fantasy adventure series with witches, shapeshifters, and cliffhangers, and awesome kids (There are very few boring adults in this book!).

Brinley is a girl with an overactive imagination and a flair for drawing. She imagines many a things and at times draws them too; but she knows that the bell only her father and herself can hear is not her imagination. I enjoyed getting to know about Brinley, her deep desire to know who her mother is and the way she makes friends along the way. She was a very realistic character with real problems and some magical ones. Her character development, especially towards the end is beautiful to see.

Hugo is the one with the most character development. From a somewhat bratty Price who wants to learn magic he grows into a very trustworthy wonderful friend and also learns a lot in the way. The friendships and relationships he forges along the way are written beautifully and are heartwarming.

Every character in this book has a role to play; even the minor characters who appear for a short period of time have important roles to play in the plot!

It's quite a complex plot for a middle-grade fantasy! Not the plot itself but rather the world building. It was a fun adventure story that leaves some loose ends as it's the first book in a series! While the plot was wonderful, the big reveal was pretty obvious from the start? But thinking about it now I think the author meant it to be a reveal only for the characters themselves and not the readers. If that's the case, it was done very well. But maybe due to fact that I've read a lot of high fantasy and epic fantasy books, certain plot points seemed a little predictable to me. But I think it would work perfectly for a younger audience.
"When you do a thing for too long, you become it."
The writing is smooth and the dialogue well written. I was so engrossed in this book and read most of it during a loud fest going on! I was so engrossed, all the noise didn't bother me at all. There were certain places were there was a lot of information given to us but I'm glad it didn't feel like info-dumping! Also I must say I loved the Chapter names and enjoyed the humor interwoven into the story.

- The characters
- The plot
- The writing
- The cover! (It's so pretty!)

- The predictable plot points
- certain places with a lot of information/description

It's a well-written Middle grade high fantasy with a wonderfully done world building and delightful characters! I can't wait to pick up the sequel and find the questions we're left with at the end of the book.


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