Book Review: Amulet Series by Kazu Kibuishi

5 out of 5 stars

IMG_1504A couple of years ago, I was looking for things that my son would really like to read on his own. He was a new reader at that time and when my mother in law comes over she brings fun Tom & Jerry comics, which he spends hours with. This gave me an idea and I popped into Bridge City Comics to have a look around. Comic books and graphic novels have come a long way since I was a kid. Archie comics and Mad Magazine were big sellers in my day, and now we have things on offer that are a feast for the eyes, pull at your heartstrings, and make you think all while entertaining you. The nice salesperson helped me find a couple of books she thought would fit his interests and boy did she nail it with the Amulet Series!

Amulet is a fantasy series featuring robots, various monsters, elves and time travel. It mixes all of our favorite things to read into one series.

Book one starts off with a family riding in the car, on their way to pick up the son – Nevin. A series of events happen causing their car to go off the road and balance precariously on the edge of a cliff. Mom and Emily are able to get out, but dad’s legs are trapped and the tree holding the car in place gives way and dad goes over the edge with the car. Not exactly an uplifting start, but this sets a lot things in motion for mom and the kids. After a couple of years they can no longer afford to live in the new house they bought right before dad died and they move into an old family house mom had inherited in another city. Exploration of the house starts and Emily finds a necklace in her great-grandfather’s library and puts it on. Little does she know what this necklace does or what is in store for her, mom and Nevin that night! Things go bump and we are off on an adventure!

I have just read the first book myself after my kiddo recommended it to me. It is a really fast read, and I enjoyed it as much as he did (in fact I need to get the other books from the library to read so I can catch up!). A few things I really loved about the series so far (as a mom) are that the kids work together to problem solve. Each has their own strengths and the other lets them pick up the lead in those cases. It isn’t too sweet though. They argue and disagree, but when the time comes, they are supportive and work together. There is a strong girl as the lead of the book and I love that. She isn’t squeamish and doesn’t scream through the book waiting for someone to save her (Pokemon, I am looking at you!). She is brave and gets right in there even though she is scared. Emily is fierce and she has a strong conscious and will. I also like that she is a red-head who plays a good person. As a red-head it is hard to find “ginger” characters who are the heroines (and I have arguments against all of the “red-headed” princesses before anyone goes down that path).

My son fell in love with this book and required we head to the library to get more until he had finished all of the books available. When book 7 came out we surprised him with it. The author, Kazu Kibuishi has said there will be 9 books in all. My son is currently pining for book 8, which I am secretly reveling in because in this day of instant gratification I appreciate that he has to wait for something he loves. I love the building of suspense!

Amulet is a fantasy series featuring robots, various monsters, elves and time travel. It mixes all of our favorite things to read into one series. With the concepts of loss/death and a few scarier scenes the recommended ages are 8-12 on Amazon, but you know your kids best. We highly recommended these books for both kids and adults!

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