Monday, 8 April 2013

Review: Hocus Pocus Hotel: The Return of Abracadabra

Hocus Pocus Hotel: The Return of Abracadabra
By Michael Dahl
Illustrator: Lisa K. Weber
Publisher: Stone Arch Books
Pub. Date: February 1, 2013
ISBN: 978-1434247216
Pages: 208


Charlie Hitchcock is back to solve another mystery in Hocus Pocus Hotel: The Return of Abracadabra. Everything starts out with Charlie helping the school bully Tyler (who he is secretly friends with) pass out flyers to the upcoming magic show at the Hocus Pocus Hotel. The hotel was once owned by the legendary Abracadabra, who disappeared fifty years ago. He didn't exactly disappear as the boys know his other identity. Abracadabra is hosting a show for amateur magicians which will lead to his return and retirement from the magician business.

The mystery begins when a fellow classmate of the boys goes missing while on stage with the magician Theopolis, who claims he gets his magic powers from demons. Charlie knows this is a lie. Both Tyler and he are determined to find out the truth, no matter what the costs.

I enjoyed reading the first book in the series last year and I eagerly signed up to review the sequel from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. No, Charlie isn't related to the famous director, but he does enjoy a good mystery. He is the kind of person who believes everything has a logical explanation to it, including the disappearance of his classmate. The Return of Abracadabra is cleverly written book with twists and turns at every chapter. Overall, I enjoyed reading the sequel as much as I liked the first the one. Both kids and adults will enjoy reading it.

About the Author:

Michael Dahl is the author of more than 200 books for children and young adults. His nonfiction has won the AEP Distinguished Achievement Award three times. His Finnegan Zwake mystery series published by Simon & Schuster won rave reviews and two of its titles were shortlisted for the Edgar and the Anthony Mystery Awards. He has written The Everything Kid's Joke Book as well as Gotcha Covered! (with Kathleen Baxter from School Library Journal) on nonfiction books that get kids excited about reading. Dahl is the Editorial Director for Stone Arch Books based in Minneapolis, where his books have won national design awards and been selected by the Junior Library Guild. His fantasy series, The Library of Doom, is the most-read series by hi-lo readers across the country. He has spoken at numerous schools, libraries, bookstores, and conferences inn the US and UK, including ALA, AASL, Renaissance Learning, TLA and IRA. He lives in a haunted house. 


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