Witch and Wizard by James Patterson (Witch and Wizard: Book 1)

7/10 Some great ideas but could have been explored and developed much more.

Witch and Wizard is the first novel in the same titled series. It was released in 2009 and is followed by Witch and Wizard - The Gift (Nov 2010). A comic book range also supplements the series, the first book in that series is Witch and Wizard - Battle for Shadowlands (Oct 2010) and in a recent video clip James Patterson confirmed there is a movie of the series being made.

Witch and Wizard centres around two main characters, a brother and sister, Whit and Wisty who live in a dystopian world where use of magic is banned by The One who is The One and is punishable by death.  Whit and Wisty have never used magic but they are woken from their sleep in the middle of the night and imprisoned as magic users, which carries a fatal sentence if proven. They are allowed a keepsake from home and their parents give them two seemingly useless items, the significance of these only revealed when Whit and Wisty find out that their parents have also been imprisoned and they decide to risk their lives and escape so that they can rescue their parents from their terrible fate.

Witch and Wizard was a fast read with a plot that rips along at a good pace. The overall story is compelling and pulls the reader in quickly.  The characters are easy to identify with and their motivations clear. The settings and situations are well described and suitably bleak and foreboding.  There's plenty of perilous encounters and action packed magical battle scenes to encourage the more reluctant reader.

I liked the ideas within this book, and the use of bleak imagery especially within the prison setting. There were some really quite striking images created by some of the battle scenes that I can see will translate easily into the movie that's in progress.

But, sadly, for my first James Patterson novel I felt a bit let down, having heard so much about his ability to weave very intricate plots and well developed characters I found little to substantiate those reviews.  The book is aimed at the YA market, which is a field that I read a lot of books from, but this book I felt 'talked down' to the reader in several places, it's set with unusually large text too, which I feel was to make the book appear longer than it really is, which is a notion I felt supported by the gratuitous amount of advertisement pages at the end.  The biggest negative for this book for me was that I felt there were little or no conclusions to the various problems that Whit and Wisty encounter, now being a part of a series as a reader you expect that to a certain degree, but in this particular case, I felt that that there were too many points left unanswered which may leave some younger readers feeling frustrated.

I think this book will appeal to the younger YA readers as the plot moves quickly, there's lots of action scenes and the use of language isn't overly complicated. Older teens will, I think,  be more accustomed to a longer read with a more intricate plot. I think there's enough use of magic to appeal to readers of JK Rowlings' Potter series and also enough adventure based magical action to appeal to the fans of Jenny Nimmo's Charlie Bone series.

Overall I rate this book as 6.7; it has some great ideas but could have been explored and developed much more.

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4 positive reader review(s) for Witch and Wizard


James Patterson's Witch and Wizard series

Witch and Wizard

Witch and Wizard: Book 1

Witch and Wizard reader reviews

from Iowa

I LOVED this book but I think it have had more pages because it was really interesting and I got SO mad wen it ended but I LOOVED IT!

from USA

The best book Patterson has wrote yet !!!! Cannot wait for the rest of the books to come out!

from Canada

I give it a ten out of ten! I loved this book and can't wait to read the rest of this series! Including the mangas and graphic novels! Once again James Patterson has written a facinating pageturner! (sorry for copying your words Courtney I just agree with you and love how you put it). You could really see the bond between their family, especially the bond between Wisty and Wit! I was very sweet and special! I do have one thing though, why does Whisty have more abilities than Wit? She got the spotlight more!

from Canada

I thought this book was olay, but at some places it got really boring and annoying. Overall this book was okay for me.

from India

I had just one problem with the novel. WHY does Wisty have so many more abilities than Whit. It put me off. There was no equality, each chapter I kept anticipating and waiting for Whit to do something really amazing but it rarely happened. And even when it did I felt a bit dissappointed. Hopefully he'll get the spotlight in book 2.

from Indiana

This is the best James Patterson book series yet! I can't wait for the movies to come out, to me this is the next Hunger Games (which I did not read the books for) and when I found out there would be a movie for the Witch and Wizard series I screamed! The only thing that I didn't like was that there some words that are just too hard the pronounce and that was it!

from Rhode Island

Witch and Wizard was an extremely good book. I did not like it as much as his other series, Maximum Ride, but I did enjoy the book very much. The plot was intense with a lot of twists. The book show just how strong the bond between family is. The trials they experience are so horrifying, yet the way James Patterson describes it... it sounds thrilling. Once again,James Patterson has written a facinating pageturner. We could all learn a thing or two from him.

8.5/10 from 8 reviews

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