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The Familiars ✻ [BOOKS] ✯ The Familiars By Adam Jay Epstein ❅ – Thomashillier.co.uk Is the kingdom s fate in the hands of an orphan cat Running fast to save his life, Aldwyn ducks into an unusual pet store Moments later Jack, a young wizard in training, comes in to choose a magical a Is the kingdom s fate in the hands of an orphan cat Running fast to save his life, Aldwyn ducks into an unusual pet store Moments later Jack, a young wizard in training, comes in to choose a magical animal to be his familiar Jack thinks his birthday pet is magical, and Aldwyn plays alongHe just has to convince the other familiars know it all blue jay Skylar and unsure tree frog Gilbert that he s as powerful as he claims Then the unthinkable happens Jack and two other young wizards are captured by the evil queen of Vastia The Familiars face dangerous foes, unearth a shocking centuries old secret, and discover a destiny that will change Vastia forever.


10 thoughts on “The Familiars

  1. Angela Oliver Angela Oliver says:

    Entertaining enough for me to finish, but not an overly great read The characters seemed a little one dimensional brave feline, sly brainy jay and foolish frog sound a little familair It s like a furry Harry Potter I felt sorry for Gilbert, his entire presence in the plot seemed to be to bumble around, make an idiot of himself and get mocked by all and sundry ok, so he sa Neville than a Ron Plus there is no way you could disguise a frog as a chicken Why did the jay with her awes Entertaining enough for me to finish, but not an overly great read The characters seemed a little one dimensional brave feline, sly brainy jay and foolish frog sound a little familair It s like a furry Harry Potter I felt sorry for Gilbert, his entire presence in the plot seemed to be to bumble around, make an idiot of himself and get mocked by all and sundry ok, so he sa Neville than a Ron Plus there is no way you could disguise a frog as a chicken Why did the jay with her awesome powers of illusion not simply make them invisible or look like something else In fact, there were numerous situations in the tale where the simple use of her abilities could have saved them from a world of hurt And why did the frog not ride on the cat Tree frogs are tiny a hopping frog could never keep up with a running cat Ultimately, I felt the author treated the animals too much like they were people in strange bodies than if they were actually animals And what s with the cat spending so much time awake And not eating the bird or for another matter, the frog Actually, now that I think about it for most of the book, nobody but the frog ever ate anything.And this is the second book I ve read in a row about a persistent bounty hunter that just won t give up Seriously, getting tired of the being pursued across the world by villain that can find you ANYwhere At least in the previous one he hadjustification than just money, surely even the money isn t worth risking your life for.Cute, but aimed at the 8 10 market and doesn t stand up to too much analysis by the oldercynical reader A couple of nice, if rather predictable twists, and one quite irritating one I ll let you figure out which is which.I might see the movie I think that would work better


  2. Dawn (& Ron) Dawn (& Ron) says:

    The Familiars Read for Anna s ABC a tabby cat, a tree frog, and a blue jay, and their three young wizards in training The story centers around the familiar s journey to save their wizards Along the way they learn about each other, themselves and big secrets that affect the entire land of Vastia We both appreciated the map to help us follow them on their amazing journey Our combined average rating is 3.75, rounded up to The Familiars Read for Anna s ABCD bookclub Both Ron and I read this fantasy tale, about three familiars a tabby cat, a tree frog, and a blue jay, and their three young wizards in training The story centers around the familiar s journey to save their wizards Along the way they learn about each other, themselves and big secrets that affect the entire land of Vastia We both appreciated the map to help us follow them on their amazing journey Our combined average rating is 3.75, rounded up to 4 stars How had the fate of Vastia fallen upon a tree frog, a blue jay, and himself, a fake familiar without even the tiniest whisker of magic The story is seen and told through the eyes of Aldwyn, an ordinary tabby cat who suddenly finds himself pretending to be a familiar to escape a bounty hunter The authors do a wonderful job of capturing the inner thoughts of a feline, and little touches that cat lovers will find themselves shaking their heads along in acknowledgement The scene where Jack picks Aldwyn and there is that instant connection between them, is how we feel when all of our rescued pets have adopted us Aldwyn must keep his secret from the other familiars, as well as the young wizards, while at the same time learning the world of magic, which becomesdifficult when they must save the young wizards But is Aldwyn only an ordinary tabby cat How quickly a journey can be made in one s mind when the travels by foot took so longDawn s thoughtsI liked the clever use of all kinds of magical animals used as familiars in this tale, chameleon crabs, pocket dragons to riding lizards and everything else in between I appreciated how the three animal familiars learned of each other through discovering things about their childhoods and backgrounds, helping them to accept and learn to trust each other, showing that there is normally a reason behind someone s behavior Though I really enjoyed these aspects and , other things left me not so sure Some things are not explained, not sure if this is intentional to keep readers curious, while other things are too conveniently discovered Is my adult self getting in the way or the fact that I m not used to reading broad fantasy like this no, not even Harry Potter, yet , its hard to say After reading other books in the series, I many have to come back and adjust my assessment My rating is 3 1 2Ron s thoughtsI liked how the three familiars worked together and learned to accept each other s differences The unexpected twist that a secret reveals sheds a different light on everything as they and the reader know it, which opens up interesting possibilities for the future books I feel the way it is written makes it easy for young readers to follow, especially considering all the characters and magical beings sprinkled throughout Overall, I found it a fun enjoyable read and rate it 4 stars.We would like to mention a few scenes for adults to consider There are two character s deaths, one where a witch gets boiled alive 157 , a fight on a bridge where two people are thrown over the side 224 8 and the magical use of a wolf s snout as a tracking device which can only be obtained one way 201 2 These scenes are generally brief and not overly detailed or in anyway gratuitous, but could be a bit too graphic for some children.As Gilbert the frog saysYou know, life isn t just about looking into the past and future, it s about living in the moment and appreciating what s right in front of youThat pretty much sums up the fun of this book, just sit back and enjoy the journey before you


  3. Shannon Shannon says:

    Not interested in this one.


  4. Crowinator Crowinator says:

    Maybe 2.5 stars Here s another older review from my LJ blog I m adding them to GR to keep track of them I wrote this one back in 2010.I think this book should have popularity, let me first say, at least among grade school kids, because of the spin of having a bunch of animals do the heroic questing and saving the world And a motley group of animals they are, too an alley cat, a blue jay, and a tree frog Still, it is terribly generic as a quest fantasy It is, for lack of a better word, c Maybe 2.5 stars Here s another older review from my LJ blog I m adding them to GR to keep track of them I wrote this one back in 2010.I think this book should have popularity, let me first say, at least among grade school kids, because of the spin of having a bunch of animals do the heroic questing and saving the world And a motley group of animals they are, too an alley cat, a blue jay, and a tree frog Still, it is terribly generic as a quest fantasy It is, for lack of a better word, cute I read that the two authors wrote this book to spur a movie contract, and it reads like it, like the skimpy novelization of a children s animated movie which, to be honest, I would probably rent, as long as it s not one of those creepy, too realistic computer animated features, like The Polar Express It s also been picked up by a movie studio and has a big web site, so all the powers of publicity may be behind this thing All of the characters are clich d think Harry Potter with animals the orphaned, misunderstood, always in a scrape hero, who turns out to have amazing powers and a prophetic DESTINY the bookish, know it all girl who is always telling everybody what to do the dim but sweet natured friend who is along for comic relief the wise old mentor who isn t any help the evil villain with not one single redeeming pointyou get the idea There are some scenes such as when Jack, apprentice wizard, goes to the shop to pick out his magical familiar that are very, very Harry Potter in this case, a mix of HP picking out his wand and his owl Even the plot twists are predictable, unless you have never read another fantasy nor seen a fantasy movie nor played a fantasy game in your whole life view spoiler What, you say It turns out that familiars have a secret history in which THEY are the ones that have done all the good, important deeds, and the magicians are the BEARDS who took all the credit Shocking hide spoiler Nevertheless, despite all my complaining, it has some fun world building with the way the familiars interact with their magicians and an appealing lead the scruffy alley cat Aldwyn, who relies on his smarts for most of the book instead of magic, which is at least something Of course, it s because he doesn t think he can do magic, except when he really, really needs to, it just happens, like it always does in these books.It s very plotty and action oriented, it has some funny moments, and though it feels a like a gimmick, it ll provide an entertaining, uncomplicated read for kids, who will probably get a kick out of picturing a cat, a frog, and a bird on the road together


  5. BAM The Bibliomaniac BAM The Bibliomaniac says:

    The thing I d like to ask about this book is at what age group is it being aimed Because I think the chapters may be a bit too long for many child readers But I will say it will probably keep the reader s interest most of the time There is constant activity with a simple, fully explained plot line So kudos to the author s for that I picked this book because I needed to read a book with a cat on the cover This was a pleasant surprise The familiars are very protective of their loyals and a The thing I d like to ask about this book is at what age group is it being aimed Because I think the chapters may be a bit too long for many child readers But I will say it will probably keep the reader s interest most of the time There is constant activity with a simple, fully explained plot line So kudos to the author s for that I picked this book because I needed to read a book with a cat on the cover This was a pleasant surprise The familiars are very protective of their loyals and are quite persistent in their endeavors, which I enjoyed reading This would probably be a good read aloud for an 8 10 year old because it would give the parent opportunity to use various character voices, the chapters would be readquickly, andexcitement could be added to the recitation.2017 Reading Challenge book with a cat on the cover


  6. Fefi Fefi says:

    Storia decisamente adatta ai pi piccoli,ma per chi ama i fantasy con protagonisti animali parlanti comunque una buona avventura.I personaggi sono molto bizzarri e variegati, la magia non manca,cos come il nascere delle amicizie,della fiducia e il senso della famiglia.La scrittura molto semplice e quindi la lettura scivola via velocemente.Quello che mi ha piacevolmente stupito il rapporto tra gli umani maghi,qui chiamati dagli animali leali e i loro famigli, rapporto che spero venga magg Storia decisamente adatta ai pi piccoli,ma per chi ama i fantasy con protagonisti animali parlanti comunque una buona avventura.I personaggi sono molto bizzarri e variegati, la magia non manca,cos come il nascere delle amicizie,della fiducia e il senso della famiglia.La scrittura molto semplice e quindi la lettura scivola via velocemente.Quello che mi ha piacevolmente stupito il rapporto tra gli umani maghi,qui chiamati dagli animali leali e i loro famigli, rapporto che spero venga maggiormente messo in risalto nei prossimi libri, perch qui i ragazzini vengono intrappolati e se ne sa ben poco di loro.Sar proprio compito dei famigli trovare la via per liberarli e questo viaggio sar ricco anche di pericoli, ma l unione fa la forza e tutto andr per il meglio.Aldwyn, il gatto randagio senza si alcun potere, ma con una fortuna davvero sfacciata, sapr entrare nel cuore della rana pasticciona Gilbert e della ghiandaia so tutto io Skylar e, lo ammetto, anche un po nel mio.Vediamo quale sar la loro prossima avventura perch c una profezia che si sta per avverare


  7. Kathryn Kathryn says:

    Here is the story of Aldwyn, the brave and resourceful ally cat who accidentally becomes a familiar to the young wizard Jack Jack and his older sister Marianne and their friend Dalton are being trained by a wise wizard and Marianne and Dalton have their own familiars, a good natured if sometimes bumbling frog named Gilbert and a wise and somewhat uppity bird named Skylar At first, Aldwyn relishes his time finally belonging to someone and learning about the wizarding world But when the childre Here is the story of Aldwyn, the brave and resourceful ally cat who accidentally becomes a familiar to the young wizard Jack Jack and his older sister Marianne and their friend Dalton are being trained by a wise wizard and Marianne and Dalton have their own familiars, a good natured if sometimes bumbling frog named Gilbert and a wise and somewhat uppity bird named Skylar At first, Aldwyn relishes his time finally belonging to someone and learning about the wizarding world But when the children are captured by a good queen gone bad, it is up to the familiars to save them And part of the plan to save them involves Aldwyn using his familiar power of telekinesis, which he lied about having in the first place Will they still be able to save the children, or will Aldwyn find his secret outed and himself outcast Though I enjoyed the basic premise and cast here, overall I was not captivated by the story I probably would have stopped reading it had it not received such high reviews, including starred reviews from some professional reviewers Perhaps the humor just didn t quite strike me in the right way, because I found most of it rather predictable and pedestrian While Aldwyn, Gilbert and, to a lesser extent, Skylar, were certainly likable and I was rooting for the success of their mission, I never felt transported to another world I was always conscious of reading a story Too, a familiar pattern is repeated here seen most famously and recently, perhaps, in the Harry Potter books of the unlikely hero in a new wizarding world Aldwyn , his kindly and humorous guy best friend Gilbert , and the skilled and intelligent but not always easy to get along with girl Skylar and I m not sure this book brought anything new or refreshing to the equation Too, I was a bit confused for awhile what the book would actually be about I would have liked a bitbuild up getting to know Jack, Marianne and Dalton, too, so that I wanted them to be rescued for their own sake and not just because the familiars wanted it I must say that I found the scene where Aldwyn and Jack first meet to be quite touching and very well written It reminded me of meeting cats at the sanctuary where I volunteer I felt that was pitch perfect The plot, while engaging enough, was a bit action quest heavy for me And some of the writing was a bit too obvious stating things that we already gathered The authors have worked in television but I think this is their first novel and it shows However, there is also potential here and I did find myself enjoying it at times though it was not a must read and, despite its short length, it took me two months to finish it Still, I think the authors really care about their characters and the world they created and this helps the reader care, too I am not sure that I will pick upbooks in the series, but as the second half of this book gained strength, I hope that the second book will be stronger than the first and provide a good read to those who are eager to carry on with the next adventure for The Familiars.PS I love the cover art How cute is Aldwyn


  8. Melissa Melissa says:

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here Hmmm I hate starting reviews I always have trouble on what to say I will say this HOLY FREAKING FAMILIAR BATMAT THIS BOOK WAS AMAZING.I know it took me awhile to read this book, but it was not from lack of interest It was merely because my work schedule and training kept my occupied Seriously i cannot emphasize how good this book was First thing first This book is directed towards the kid YA crowd The writing is simple and sometimes just silly at some points Some adults may not like Hmmm I hate starting reviews I always have trouble on what to say I will say this HOLY FREAKING FAMILIAR BATMAT THIS BOOK WAS AMAZING.I know it took me awhile to read this book, but it was not from lack of interest It was merely because my work schedule and training kept my occupied Seriously i cannot emphasize how good this book was First thing first This book is directed towards the kid YA crowd The writing is simple and sometimes just silly at some points Some adults may not like its Seeing that i m secretly a child inside i rather enjoyed it.Don t let that keep you from reading the book though It does contain elements such as death and attempted murder The Familiars tackles themes such as believing in yourself, friendship honesty, and hard work Aldwyn started out as an ally cat and only got picked up as Jack s familiar by mistake Soon after he is taken the grand Kalstaff s house three shooting stars fall indicating a new prophecy Kalstaff like the queen believes that the stars indicated that Jack, Dalton, and Marianne are the new heroes The difference being is that the queen comes and tries to kill the trio She is prevented from doing so when Kalstaff uses the last of his life force to put a protective spell over the trio It becomes up to the three familiars to save their masters.Their adventure is filled with challenges that leads them to discoveringabout their world and themselves Aldywn even discovers that he has magical powers The twist for the villain is simply brilliant I loved it completely I m only going to leave a picture at the end of the post as its hint.The Familiars is really a new Harry Potter for a new generation That is if Harry Potter stared Crookshanks, Hedwig, and the other animals I m highly looking forward to the next installment Rating 5 stars Perfectly brilliant image error


  9. Serena.. Sery-ously? Serena.. Sery-ously? says:

    Wow Letto Divorato in un pomeriggio, una cosa che non mi capitava da secoli. La gioia di iniziare un libro, perdersi tra le sue pagine e finirlo prima di riuscire a realizzare che magari poi domani un po mi mancher , che sono una tonta a leggere un libro in modo cos famelico. Certo, ha sicuramente aiutato la brevit del romanzo poco pi di 200 pagine e la presenza di alcune pagine con disegni. Ma pur vero che la storia super carina e scorre velocissima..Lo consiglio caldamente, sopra Wow Letto Divorato in un pomeriggio, una cosa che non mi capitava da secoli. La gioia di iniziare un libro, perdersi tra le sue pagine e finirlo prima di riuscire a realizzare che magari poi domani un po mi mancher , che sono una tonta a leggere un libro in modo cos famelico. Certo, ha sicuramente aiutato la brevit del romanzo poco pi di 200 pagine e la presenza di alcune pagine con disegni. Ma pur vero che la storia super carina e scorre velocissima..Lo consiglio caldamente, soprattutto se avete voglia di staccare un po la spina e leggere qualcosa di leggero Alcuni elementi soprattutto all inizio mi hanno riportato alla mente Harry Potter e come potrebbe non essere Ormai se si parla di maghi, di una scuola di magia, della fatidica soglia degli undici anni, di un mago potentissimo che ne ha sconfitti tanti altri in giovent E difficile non pensare alla Rowling e al suo mondo, diciamolo Ero gi parecchio rassegnata all idea di leggere una pallida imitazione di HP, quindi forse per questo che sono rimasta doppiamente sorpresa. La storia prende velocemente un altra via, si sviluppa in maniera diversa e soprattutto ha come protagonisti non i soliti maghi o streghe. Ma i loro Famigli s , dal titolo e dalla trama avrei potuto anche intuirlo, direte voi. Ma son dettagli di poco conto, questi D , ovvero gli animali che vengono scelti dai maghi e che li accompagnano nel loro percorso. Un po come l Edvige o il Grattastinchi di Potteriana memoria, per capirci. Sono loro i veri eroi della storia e il focus della narrazione tanto che i maghi compaiono all inizio e alla fine soltanto Ogni famiglio caratterizzato da un potere Skylar, una ghiandaia in grado di creare effetti illusionistici, Gilbert, la rana, ha la capacit di predifre il futuro nelle pozzanghere. Poi ci sono i granchi camaleonte, lucertole da cavalcate, gatti telecinetici. E tanti altri tutti da scoprire nel negozio dei famigli mi sono divertita un sacco D Possono parlare tra loro, con i maghi pi anziani che hanno la capacit di capire gli animali e soprattutto cosa che trovo bellissima con i loro leali , i maghi cio che li scelgono come compagni di avventura. Insomma, un grande legame di amicizia, non c dubbio Mi sono piaciute molto le avventure che i tre famigli affrontano. E soprattutto il modo con cui Aldwyn riesce a cavarsela usando l intuito, la scaltrezza e. un po di fortuna a volte In tutto ci aiuta molto lo stile dei due autori, semplice, immediato e spesso molto divertente. Alcune uscite intelligenti mi hanno davvero divertito Certo, beninteso un libro pensato per un pubblico pi giovane e si sente. Per non per questo un opera meno meritevole Non vedo l ora di leggere il seguito. Che tralaltro ho visto in libreria a 5,90 euro YEI


  10. Ann Ann says:

    What is a Familiar The animal companion of a witch or wizard a companion with which the witch or wizard can speak with, a companion that will learn with you, fight with you, and protect you But, in this tale, the book is not from the perspective of the witch or wizard, but instead the perspective of the familiars, and one familiar in particular, a jovial alley cat named Aldwyn.I absolutely loved the early chapters of this book, especially the part where Aldwyn receives his first ever contact What is a Familiar The animal companion of a witch or wizard a companion with which the witch or wizard can speak with, a companion that will learn with you, fight with you, and protect you But, in this tale, the book is not from the perspective of the witch or wizard, but instead the perspective of the familiars, and one familiar in particular, a jovial alley cat named Aldwyn.I absolutely loved the early chapters of this book, especially the part where Aldwyn receives his first ever contact with a human, and realizes the connection and special bond right away To me, it read as if the authors truly understood that special bond between humans and pets From there I had high hopes for this book Unfortunately, that was the last time my hopes were so high The book quickly reverted to less than stellar prose and less than stellar structured plot I thought the book was going to be about Aldwyn becoming familiar with, well, being a familiar and the construction of his bond with his Loyal his wizard Jack Instead, though, the plot revolved around Aldwyn and his fellow familiars trying to save their loyals and taking down a tyrannical queen And while I wouldn t have any issue with this plot, I think the problem here was that it felt like this plot should have been the plot of the sequel There wasn t enough set up for me to really care about the goings on in this book There wasn t enough with Aldwyn and Jack before Jack was taken away for me to feel the hurt of that separation We didn t become sufficiently familiar with the world to realize how shocking it was when the queen goes suddenly evil Instead, I felt like the authors were telling us what to feel instead of it coming naturally This choppy narrative continued through out the book, where there wasn t enough set up, and so everything felt rather contrived The book is full of mini adventures, but we re given back story, climax, and resolution, all in one chapter, and then moved on to the next event Because of this, nothing felt connected or like it was advancing the overall story or emotional connection of the characters, so I was often left with a lackluster kind of feeling Plus, there were a few scenes that I thought were too disturbing for the otherwise very young feel of this book.Obviously others adore this book, but I can t quite figure out why, nor why it s received so many accolades I really wanted to like this book, and there were some surprising twists but I m afraid I just never cared enough about the characters, and none of the plot points felt developed enough to be carry much impact when the ta da moments finally arrived


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