Read The Wishing Spell by Chris Colfer Brandon Dorman Online


Alex and Conner Bailey's world is about to change, in this fast-paced adventure that uniquely combines our modern day world with the enchanting realm of classic fairy tales.The Land of Stories tells the tale of twins Alex and Conner. Through the mysterious powers of a cherished book of stories, they leave their world behind and find themselves in a foreign land full of wonAlex and Conner Bailey's world is about to change, in this fast-paced adventure that uniquely combines our modern day world with the enchanting realm of classic fairy tales.The Land of Stories tells the tale of twins Alex and Conner. Through the mysterious powers of a cherished book of stories, they leave their world behind and find themselves in a foreign land full of wonder and magic where they come face-to-face with the fairy tale characters they grew up reading about.But after a series of encounters with witches, wolves, goblins, and trolls alike, getting back home is going to be harder than they thought....

Title : The Wishing Spell
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780316201575
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 438 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Wishing Spell Reviews

  • Hailey (HaileyinBookland)
    2019-06-02 13:50

    4.5*This was SO much fun! Such a quick and engaging read. I loved how all the fairy tales I know and love were incorporated into the story. I actually listened to the audiobook, which is read by Chris Colfer, and it really enhanced my reading experience. I will admit, I found the writing at times to be a tad lackluster, but that was mostly a problem with showing vs. telling that I think can be attributed to the fact that it's a middle grade novel. I think this is a series I will definitely be continuing!

  • LolaReviewer
    2019-05-27 07:37

    Who ever said an actor cannot be an author? No one ever, because it’s not true at all.Well this was such a lovely surprise. The world that Chris Colfer introduces us to is filled with magic, charming creatures and familiar names of princesses, princes, fairytale heroes and heroines.Although I’m one of those readers who can read anything from children’s books to mature adult books, it doesn’t mean I like everything I stumble across. For my middle grade reads, I look for 1. creativity, 2. enchanting and 3. deep.‘‘The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell’’ has a lot to offer: an enthralling adventure, relatable heroes, a scavenger hunt like never before seen, lots of encounters with our favourite fairytale characters and, most of all, the type of storyline that offers something new with every new chapter.Granted, Alex and Conner do find most of their objects in a relatively easy manner and short amount of time; they’re offered help everywhere they go. But isn’t a fairytale world supposed to be good and better than our own? Where kindness is not questioned and unceremoniously reciprocated?I enjoyed every second of my time with this book. I’m going to have to say that the beginning is not as great as what follows the eighty first pages, and that is because we are still in the human world before that, but once Alex and Conner reach the Land of Stories, it’s good time after good time after good time.To all of those who haven’t read this yet, y’all are some lucky fellows to be able to experience this story for the first time.Blog | Youtube | Twitter | Instagram | Google+ | Bloglovin’

  • Jazz
    2019-06-11 13:47

    In Which I Drink Haterade and Review The Wishing Spell...I'm not getting my hate on just to hate. I'm getting my hate on because this book was the most painful reading experience I have ever had. I didn't think a book could irritate me so much that it would result in a terrible weight in my chest, but it did. It did.Colfer's prose is cliche and redundant from the first page. His sentences are short and simplistic with no signs of imagery or depth. Instead of showing emotion and action, Colfer opts to tell you what the characters are feeling as blandly as possible. We don't feel the rush of falling through a book into a magical land. Instead, we get "AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!" and a plethora of adverbs (that get worse as the novel goes on).Was an editor assigned to this book? I think the editor might have been a cat with narcolepsy.Had The Wishing Spell been written as a straight up parody of faerie tales, it would have been a successful piece of writing. When the twins meet the witch who tried to eat Hansel & Gretel, they find a way to turn her into vegan. Conner notes that compared to the Pevensie children climbing through a wardrobe, and Dorothy being whisked away to Oz via twister, falling through a book was pretty boring. I had to laugh at the latter because I was thinking the same thing, and the former because it was a clever way to portray how modern children would react to villains from old stories they knew well.Colfer does not engage with faerie tales in a meaningful way. Alex and Conner debate over the messages of the stories at the start of the novel, but by the book's close they only come to the conclusion that the stories have made people happy for years. They do not recognize it is important for these stories to have multiple interpretations, and that there is no correct meaning.The original characters are flat archetypes--single mother with a heart of gold, slacker boy, smart uptight girl, the perfect grandma is endlessly supportive and offers financial support. Colfer turns beloved faerie tale characters into ineffectual twits. Even his semi-interesting version of Goldilocks is reduced to petty name calling when she discovers a betrayal. Snow White shouts in the prologue, and it is said that it was the first time she had ever raised her voice. A woman whose stepmother tried to murder her four times never raised her voice before speaking to her stepmother in a dungeon? No. Colfer also paints Snow White as the paragon of virtue. Though he thanks the Brothers Grimm in his acknowledgements, Colfer ignores the ending printed in their stories in which Snow White makes her mother "dance" in red-hot iron shoes at her wedding. Even the good guys can be cruel, which would have been something wise to impart to readers, but he made the disappointing decision to gloss over it.All of the scrapes Alex and Conner find themselves in are easily solved through helpful adults whom have no problem sacrificing themselves for two annoying kids they just met. This plot device is irritating not only because it is repetitive, but also because Conner feels perfectly comfortable insulting and walking all over the people he meets. As soon as they get to the Land of Stories, he designates a frog-man as Froggy rather than letting the frog-man establish his own identity. Alex waffles between being the responsible one and having no common sense. How does a bookworm manage to climb Rapunzel's tower without any mountain climbing gear? It seems Colfer changed the characters to suit his whims as he went on. The twins mostly storm from kingdom to kingdom telling the monarchs that they suck at being monarchs (unless they're busy being good wives and mothers), and solve simple problems for them that make the faerie tale characters seem like jokes rather than complex figures.The land of stories is not a Hogwarts, Narnia, or Oz--both terrifying and delightful. It is pretty much just terrifying and miserable. Why would anyone want to go there? Furthermore, why would a child want to read about such an unhappy place?Verdict: Don't read this. Watch Fushigi Yuugi instead.

  • Vanessa
    2019-06-21 11:39

    Actor, Golden Globe winner, 2-time Emmy nominee, one of Time Magazine's 100 Most Influential People in the World, singer, screen writer, producer ... and now author? And all of that at just 22 years old? I understand how some people might be a bit skeptical in regards to Chris Colfer's actual writing talents, but the truth is - the guy just seems to be a natural-born storyteller, and it doesn't matter which medium he uses for it.His first novel, "The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell", is the first book in what will become a series of novels about twins Alex and Conner Bailey. For their twelfth birthday the twins' grandmother gives them a book that has been in the family for a long time - a collection of fairytales called "The Land of Stories". But as Conner and Alex soon find out - this is no ordinary book! When Alex accidentally falls into the book and Conner jumps after her, the twins find themselves in a world that is at once familiar and foreign - familiar, because they've grown up reading stories about the kingdoms of this fairytale world; and foreign because suddenly they are faced with the aftermath of "Happily Ever After": Goldilocks is a wanted fugitive; the big bad wolf may be dead but his pack is very much alive and hellbent on revenge; and the evil queen that almost succeeded in murdering Snow White has escaped from her prison.Desperately trying to find their way home the twins start gathering a number of magical items in the hopes of successfully performing "The Wishing Spell". On their journey they meet many of the characters they've known since childhood along with numerous magical creatures. But Alex and Conner are not the only ones looking for the ingredients for the Wishing Spell, and what started out as a kind of scavenger hunt quickly turns into a race against time ... Chris Colfer has a very vivid and descriptive style of writing that I personally liked very much. Whether he was describing castles, quaint villages or the dungeons of the Troll and Goblin Territory - it all came to life right before my eyes, and I could see every scene like a movie in my mind.Conner and Alex were both likable and endearing lead characters. Where Alex is a too-smart-for-her-own-good bookworm, Conner is full of sarcasm. Despite their differences and their constant bickering and bantering - which makes for quite a few funny moments - it is clear that they have a close relationship and would never leave the other behind. But the twins are really just two out of a very large cast of characters, many of whom are of course already known to us from various fairytales. Personally, I have to admit I really liked Goldilocks - the girl kicked ass, so to speak ... ;o)Children will absolutely love this book - in fact, they might want to live in it! - but that doesn't mean that it is only suitable for children. If you enjoy imaginative and fantastical stories full of magic, humor and adventure then you will probably adore TLOS! It really is a wonderful story for anyone who has ever loved fairytales ... and everyone who has remained young at heart!Reading this book reminded me of how much I loved escaping into the world of books as a kid! Back then I would forget everything around me and just dive into different worlds to have amazing adventures. I could be a princess, a pirate or a rebel; I could travel the world, discover hidden treasures, or solve huge mysteries. In short - I could do or be anything I wanted!I still love reading books but somehow I now often find it much harder to lose myself completely in a story like I used to do. But this particular book gave me back that feeling I remembered from my childhood - a sense of something magical! It would hold a special place in my heart for that alone, even if it wasn't as good as it actually is!One thing I also liked was that Chris managed to tuck a few valuable lessons into his story, and he did so in a subtle way that never comes across as preachy. The message that he wants to give his readers is simple and yet so important: There is nothing wrong with just being yourself; don't try to mold yourself into something you're not comfortable with just to please other people; and don't disregard your own talents and capabilities just because they might not be the same as those of others.Is TLOS a perfect book? No. Nor is it the best book I have ever read. But what it is is a wonderfully imaginative and fast-paced adventure that is very entertaining and definitely fun to read. It is a book that I thoroughly enjoyed, and will certainly pick up and read again. The story has a good flow to it, I was never bored for even a moment, and I chuckled to myself (or even laughed out loud) more often than I can count. Yes, some of the scenes could have been elaborated a bit or fleshed out more, and yes - there were a few moments where I felt like the twins got away a little bit too easily, but those are just the little bumps that almost any novel by a first-time author has. As for predictability - well, sure ... there were a few things that I guessed at pretty early on, but I have to say that there were quite a few surprising twists and turns in the final chapters that I definitely did not see coming! In fact, I think the last 100 or so pages were my favorite part of the book, and it felt like Chris really hit his stride as a writer the further into the story he got - something that certainly makes me excited for the sequel ... :o)This book definitely proves that Chris Colfer is indeed a talented writer with a wonderful imagination whose storytelling ability will most likely only get better with age, and I for one cannot wait for all the other stories that will surely come out of his creative mind in the coming years!So to sum this up .... what did I love most about TLOS? Well, I'd say its unique story and humor, the interesting characters - and the magical feeling it left me with ... :o)Last but not least, one note about the audiobook:It is read by Chris Colfer himself, and what a treat that is! He really has a unique voice - both literally and figuratively speaking - and his narrative is utterly engaging. He truly manages to give every character their own voice and personality (and that's no small feat considering the large number of characters in this book!), and I must say that I almost loved the audiobook a bit more than the actual printed book (which I read first) - and that means a lot coming from me since I'm not normally a fan of audiobooks at all ....!

  • Nicole
    2019-06-09 13:48

    The main reason I am writing this review here is because I am tired of hearing only positive things about this book. I find it misleading and I know that there are many other better written stories for our readers. Chris Colfer is an actor on the television show Glee, and this book reads like a long drawn out screenplay. Descriptions are either nonexistent or so basic that my students could paint a far better image. When describing a cavalcade of knights arriving in front the twins, Colfer describes them only by saying: "Their armor was clean and shiny." OK... Colfer puts most of his story in the dialogue and the narration seems to be just a means to link those speaking parts together. He misses the beauty that can go into a well written narrative. A story should not leave its reader breaking away from the flow to consider how awkwardly written it is. Truly though, I could go on and on, and that would be too harsh. So, here are a few things that bothered me in a (sort of) list:The extreme overuse of poor similes:"Mrs. Peters was staring at her as if she had just witnessed a gruesome rural animal give birth."(I couldn't think of a gruesome rural animal...pig, cow, mouse. Dunno.)"Alex clambered up the tree faster than any animal she had ever seen in a documentary."(Doesn't that just flow off the lips.)Compares the witch with the gingerbread house to: "...staring at her as if she were a rabid Tyranosaurus rex about to pounce on them at any moment."(#1 rabid T-rex. #2 would pounce be the best word to describe the movement of a T-rex? #3 the word rabies makes, I believe, 3 appearances. At least one more I flagged when the twins come upon some unicorns. )The similes go on and on and on and on...Lack of revision.If Colfer spent any time at all revising this novel we would not see the following phrase appear so often:"Steam was practically coming out of the teacher's ears and nostrils." pg.75"Steam was practically coming out of their nostrils." pg. 361"...Conner said. Steam was practically coming from his ears." pg. 164Some of the writing just simply strikes me the wrong way. Like when Conner sees the gingerbread house on page 112. "'Whoa,' Conner said. 'I feel like I might get diabetes from just looking at that place." Overall, the story is so horribly written that I BEG Colfer's editor to help him make the next book in the series a bit smoother. The plot of the book doesn't bother me. I can fall into the most fantastical storyline and believe every line of it. But that is where the hard work on the author's part comes in. Colfer must read more to become a better writer. This is not a script, it is a novel.Go on, tell me I'm wrong. I can take it. See review on my blog: http://bluestockingthinking.blogspot....

  • Johara Almogbel
    2019-05-27 13:29

    I picked this book up at the airport because I was trying to convince my ten year old brother to start reading more imaginative stories and less... Diary of a Wimpy Kid.I figured I'd read it first and see what it was like. Then I found out the author was this dude on glee, apparently, and I admit my enthusiasm kind of dipped. And, good thing it did, because this book was very... I don't know. The plot and the fairytale world was good enough, but the whole story was quite bland. Not to mention that the girl twin, Alex, was annoying enough I wanted shut her smug annoying face up. Everything tied too neatly, the characters weren't defined as well, the fairytales felt like an afterthought, and it sort of felt like I was reading the Magic Tree House. The only character I enjoyed reading about was Goldilocks. I could easily see a book where her adventures feature through. But, that's about it.Mind you, I'm still giving it to my brother. Seriously. Have you read Diary of a Wimpy Kid?

  • Lisa
    2019-06-03 15:34

    I read this book before I let my eight year old daughter take it on. What a lovely surprise this turned out to be. This middle-grade book was a delight to read as it incorporates many of our favourite childhood fairy tales into the overall story arc. Definitely a recommended read!

  • Melodee
    2019-05-31 07:28

    The synopsis of this book showed such a fun, interesting idea, and the artwork is done by one of my favorite book artists. I began reading it to see if my daughter would enjoy it, because she gets easily bored with books. I'll not be recommending it to her. Too bad the artist can't write, too. This is obviously a first time writer, and I wonder if he was published so quickly and easily because he's on TV. I dunno. There was too much going on without much consequence. It was supposedly a dangerous and difficult task the twin children were supposed to be doing, but they got along pretty easily, with an extraordinary amount of luck. And though they learned something about their parents along the way, I didn't feel as if they learned anything about themselves, or changed after having gone through their journey. Too many questions left unanswered, but not interesting enough to make me care enough to find out. I think what bothered me the most, was the hypocrisy of the author, and I don't think he even realized he was this way. He makes such an effort at the beginning of the book to point out that stories, fairy tales in particular, are meant to teach us a lesson. And then his own book does nothing to teach us a lesson. Unless the lesson is to go ahead and break rules of society if it strengthens your bond with your siblings. That just grated on me. The smart sister fills in answers for her brother on a test so he won't get in trouble for another bad grade. And in the book it says "she did the right thing. As a sister." Sorry. It's not right to cheat on a test. Ever. And then it's never brought up again, no mentioned at all. Why even bring it up? Other than to show that sometimes its ok to bend the rules? Not the lesson I want my children to learn. I'm not impressed. Too bad, too. Because the idea of the story had such promise. I was hoping to enjoy seeing what he imagined the world of fairy land to be like, and how our favorite characters got along after "Happily Ever After." But there just wasn't enough depth, thought or interest.

  • Maria Espadinha
    2019-06-19 14:37

    Os Gémeos da FantasiaAlex é uma jovem solitária, "demasiado esperta para seu próprio bem".Connor é sarcástico, dissonante, rebelde...Dois Gémeos sem mundo, descobrem o Mundo em Terras de Fantasia!Não é esse o poder encantador das estórias?! Mergulham-nos em mundos não nossos, onde nos encontramos e perdemos deliciosamente!!!“There is this idea that you either read to escape or you read to find yourself.”I believe that both things happen ;)A leitura é um voo exterior, rumo à verdade interior!"O Feitiço Dos Desejos" é uma viagem arrebatadora por Terras de Fantasia :)

  • Molly
    2019-06-06 11:49

    I wanted to read this book and like it, but I just couldn't finish it. I barely got to the start of Alex's and Conner's adventure, but there were so many things that annoyed me in this book. The way the book talked about fairy tales made me want to grind my teeth. The emphasis on "all fairy tales have a moral and there is only one correct interpretation" really was what made me give up on this book. It indicates a real lack of research or general knowledge about either fairy tales or literary analysis. While yes, with the surge of literary fairy tales in the 18th and 19th centuries, many tales were appropriated for children and given clear morals, there's no way to say that the stories were intended to be viewed this way. That whole lesson at the beginning of the book just had me shaking my head. So no, I won't be finishing this one. It's a good attempt at a first novel but there are many issues (such as the dumbing down for children and the very clear exposition) that make me wonder if the book would have gotten published by an unknown author. Kids aren't stupid. If they read your book they can figure out a lot more than you're giving them credit for. It felt like a book written for 8 year olds, yet it was much longer than I would expect for that age group. I don't think I'll be giving this one another try.

  • Mel
    2019-05-26 14:48

    The Land of Stories book one follows two twins, Alex and Connor Bailey, who one day after hearing so much about a world full of fairytales, end up in that world. I really enjoyed this! It took me a very long time to read. For some reason, despite reading quickly and the story going by smoothly, every time I looked at my page numbers I felt like I had only read 10 pages. I think that's because so much happens in these pages and none of the events themselves were particularly long, so it went by "slow" in terms of page numbers.A lot of this wasn't super memorable but I really enjoyed it nonetheless. I liked the fairytale aspect especially, particularly the fact that some stories kept true to the real fairy tale and not the movie versions of them. This wasn't the case for them all, but most of them. I think the fairytale aspect and the world itself were the most memorable parts to me. The characters, while enjoyable, did not leave a lasting effect on me, but that's alright. The end is why I gave it 4 stars. I was going to settle for 3.5 but I loved the ending and how sweet it was and the events that unfolded made me want to read on in the series so I bumped it to 4 stars for causing that reaction from me.

  • Lilian
    2019-05-26 10:40

    Writing felt annoyingly clunky, and not in a juvenile way (though I did think the writing explained EVERY LITTLE THING. I am not stupid here!)--in a messy way. I listened to the audiobook, and I am surprised Chris Colfer didn't feel the urge to clean his weird sentences. The dialogue felt too rigid, and all those he said, she saids annoyed me (maybe more because it was an audiobook, complete with voice actors?) I have a feeling Colfer made Alex and Connor twins just so he could refer to them as "the twins" when that wasn't even necessary.This book just felt like it was preaching to me: Disney renditions of fairy tales are silly! The originals are the best! The originals teach us so much...blah blah blah.While I am thinking in the back of my head "Actually, the originals were pretty disturbing stuff, complete with cannibalism and rape. Thank god Disney gave you happy endings, or we would have crying kids."Although I liked Connor for his dry humor, I often wanting to slap him for being mr.smarty pants. Poor Alex just faded into the background while Connor wouldn't keep his mouth shut.I know Alex didn't have any friends, but her eagerness to stay in the magic realm made me wince. Seriously? You would throw away your mother and grandma just so you could play with magic all day?Lastly,the plot twists weren't particularly surprising. I didn't even think some of them made sense.(view spoiler)[How can you not recognize your father's handwriting?? (hide spoiler)]

  • Bianca
    2019-05-29 11:47

    “It doesn’t matter how greatly you’ve been hurt or how much you’re hurting, it’s what you do with the pain that counts. You could cry for years, and rightfully so, or you could choose to learn and grow from it. Take it from me: I spent years hiding in a hole, afraid to come out because of what people would think of me. But one day I decided to leave, and I ended up saving lives!”"The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell" is the most incredible book I've read since "The Never-ending Story", and that was the very first book I read when I was little. I've read plenty of books in between, and many of them I truly loved and treasured, but when I read The Land of Stories a feeling came back that I didn't think I could still feel, being a twenty-something and all. I was feeling young again. Not that feeling of being young, where you are feeling overly excited about something like when it was Christmas. But truly young, back at the age when you lived in the fairy tale world. When you were begging everyone at your house to read to you, or when you learned reading before you even went to school only because you wanted to read all those wonderful stories all by yourself. When you wanted to have all those characters for yourself and imagined what their "happily ever after" was actually like. You imagined what happened to all the princes and princesses after they got married? What happened to that kingdom after it woke up from 100 years of sleep? What could have possibly made the Evil Queen so evil?I'm a twenty-something now, and I haven't really thought much about fairy tales lately. Things happen when you grow up and you stop believing in them, or stop seeing them in the way you did back when you were little. Discovering them again thanks to Chris Colfer was one of the best things that could have ever happened, and I could almost hate myself for forgetting how much fairy tales helped me grow and be the person I am today. ""Conner," Alex whispered close to him. "Look around this place! It's like we're having our own Lucy and Mr. Tumnus moment!"Connor looked around and saw what she meant. "If he offers us Turkish delight, I don't care what you say: We're getting out of here.""And Chris didn't just help me remember about fairy tales. He also painted a wonderful picture of "The Land of Stories" of the big "what happened after happily ever after" question that every passionate reader of fairy tales carries in their heart since they were a child. His imagination of the kingdoms and the land, how they fit together and what all of the fairy tale characters have grown into over the years is more beautiful then anything I could have ever imagined as a child and the twins Conner and Alex (who get lost in the fairy tale world) are just the cherry on top of it all. All of the characters are really magnificent and even if you never imagined them to be like Chris has written them, you will have an unforgettable time travelling through the world of Chris' imagination. You know some books you read in one night, because they are so intense, interesting or funny, you can't put them down. It took me a little over a week to finish "The Land of Stories", not because it wasn't intense, interesting or funny, it is all of those things. But because I didn't want the book to end.I didn't want to say goodbye to Alex and Conner. I wanted to stay on the journey with them, meet more interesting people, see more of the wonderful Land of Stories. After a couple of chapters I always felt like I had to give my head a little time to digest what I had just read; walk through it again in my imagination; make up my own little picture of the kingdoms, the landscape, the people, remember how my younger self sometimes imagined all of these things to be.I know, some might not be as passionate about this book as I am, but that's probably because they never experienced fairy tales the way I did when I was little. All I can say to "The Land of Stories" is: Thank you Chris Colfer, for bringing fairy tales back into a world and into a generation that truly needs them. Thank you for letting us wander around your imagination. I hope everyone picks up this book, not because I said so or because it's the "Chris Colfer", but because you loved fairy tales as a kid. Because you know the characters like Snow White and the Prince Charmings and Cinderella…., because you miss them and want to have another adventure with them. Even if you are a twenty-something like me."Do you think it was magic?"

  • Yana
    2019-06-22 10:47

    I can see why many wonder about it being another celebrity using a ghost writer but Chris Colfer has been into writting for far longer than you think. While not professionally, and it's fun because he didn't do professional acting before Glee and a short movie and ressulted excelent on it, he's done work adapting musicals and being on the writers club at his school. While that is cute and all, there's then that he's done the scriptwritting for Struck By Lightning, a movie which he stars and produces. One has to admire the man for making his own paths in the industry if the industry doesn't give him the chances. That'll be also another showcase for his writting but ALSO will be released later this year. Point is I have no doubt this is something he wrote because he has always loved writting, it's not a sudden whim. Give him a chance. From what I've seen of him he is a very clever, creative and witty guy so I have possitive expectations about this book.

  • Therese
    2019-06-10 11:30

    So, was that ending exactly like the Narnia ending or what?A part of me thinks I would've enjoyed the book more if I was a bit younger. The other part of me is saying "uhm Therese you read a lot of children books, and you don't have any problems with them." So who knows? Maybe I would've liked it more if I was 10. Maybe not.The good parts:* There were some really good and funny quotes.The bad parts:* The teacher at the start made me really, really angry. She was just extremely pretentious, and when she rolled her eyes at the girl, I just...argh. I want to be a teacher one day. And as an aspiring teacher, I want to say right now: If you ever catch me rolling my eyes "all the way back into the head" because of a young student who was unsure of something, fire me on the spot.* Really simple writing. I get that this is for kids, but Chris could use some "show don't tell" lessons.* Predictable. (view spoiler)[I guessed that it was their fathers journal on page 150-something. (hide spoiler)]I like Chris Colfer as an actor and as a person (AND I FEEL BAD ABOUT NOT LIKING THIS), and this is not a horrible book. But when I find myself cringing at parts, there is something wrong.

  • Becky
    2019-06-12 07:35

    If I had only one word for this book it would be "boring." There are problems with this book at every level. I bought it because I like Chris Colfer and was interested to see what he wrote like. He sings way better than he writes.However, all the problems I have with this book are age-related. He writes like a teenager. His diction is painful, problems are CONSTANTLY being solved through happy coincidences, the tension is poorly handled (basically non-existent), there are italics and ellipses everywhere, and cliches coming out of every hole. The characters are only just there, all of them are very flat. There is a very childish representation of all emotions, but especially grief and love. There is also a very convenient morality present: it ends in a very preachy manner, and yet it's okay to lie if you "know your audience." Similarly, a fall that the evil character has no chance of surviving is cheerfully limped away from by a good character. There is also a problem of time, which Colfer tried to conveniently fix at the end, but forgot about the parents: it took the dad a long time in fairy-time to get back, so their mother would have been old by the time he made it. There are no shortage of similar sloppy holes present in the narrative.The thing that annoyed me the most is Colfer's claims about fairy tales at the beginning. He throws around terms like "correct interpretation" and "the original Grimm story" both of which are oxymoronic statements. Both Alex and the teacher act like fairy tale experts, but they run into walls at every turn as they chase down the "correct morals" that need to be brought out of a text. I just want to buy Colfer a book of Frye and Propp. ANY research on his part would have prevented him from making these kinds of mistakes. For all his condemnation of modern fairy tales, his fairies could have walked right out of the new Disney Tinker Bell movies. His whole understanding of fairy tales reeks of modernity, and yet he slams the kids at the beginning of the book for that very fault. Having said all that, Colfer has time to improve. He's young, he has the drive, and I do believe he loves stories. He needs a strong editor in the worst way, or maybe just some writer's training. If he keeps reading and keeps writing he could very well come up with something worth reading. At best, this book is "cute." It had a decent plot arc and if he had waited and put some proper editing into it it could have been very good. So while I wouldn't waste my time on this one, I'm interested to see how his writing evolves (and hopefully it does).

  • Danny Phanton
    2019-06-01 11:53

    Reseña completa en el blog: La cueva de Danny.No importa cuánto te han herido o cuánto estás sufriendo, lo que verdaderamente importa es lo que haces con el dolor. Podrías llorar por años y con razón, o podrías elegir aprender de él y crecer.¡Me ha encantado! El libro es bastante entretenido y rápido de leer, con muchas aventuras, cuentos de hadas, grandes personajes, un mundo maravilloso, me sorprendió en varias partes y fue más de lo que esperaba, la verdad, próximamente reseña completa en el blog. ¡Solo leeanlo!

  • Carla Dente
    2019-06-12 10:31

    Una historia muy bonita y entretenida♥VIDEO RESEÑA (sin spoilers) + CONCURSO PARA GANAR EL LIBRO (arg):

  • Tammy
    2019-06-10 12:45

    Being a fan of Glee and generally supportive of all the cast (and being a huge fan of children's fantasy novels) I decided to read this book.I found the writing to be of extremely poor quality for several reasons.1) The sentences were far too simplistic, even for a children's bookFor example he uses "Connor said" or "Alex said" every single time they speak. 2) As someone else mentioned, Colfer simply tells the reader what is happening rather than showing us, as the writing completely lacks imagination. This is a novel, but oddly the writing is so basic that it reads like a screenplay instead. 3) The characters were stereotypes are poorly developed and are all far too saccharine. 4) The twins escaped dangerous situations far too easily, again, the plot lacking imagination. I will not waste my time going into more detail. Overall, this book was extremely rushed, sloppy and terribly written and I hope Colfer can improve vastly, for his own sake. He definitely needs to develop some proper writing skills before publishing a sequel, and should not have published something so bad so quickly. In all honesty, I do not particularly appreciate celebrities using their fame to publish bad material just because they can. Chris Colfer is not a writer. Not yet by any means. If he was giving the money to charity, sure? But that's it.

  • Olivier Delaye
    2019-06-22 15:51

    Absolutely and totally loved reading this!

  • Heather
    2019-06-24 15:48

    Before I review this book, I must tell you that the author, Chris Colfer, is one of my favorite actors, but as I read this book I put that out of my mind to judge him as a novelist only. I have attempted to review this book as fairly and impartially as I do all the novels I read.There is no question that this story is entertaining. The number of times I laughed out loud, teared up, and let my imagination run wild with theories cannot be counted. Colfer is, as he’s said in his own words, a consummate storyteller. He takes classic fairytales and makes them relatable to modern young adults. While I sometimes disagreed with his interpretation of the fairytale morals, I certainly see his opinion as valid and enjoyed his renditions of post-fairytale life immensely.Only in one regard do I vehemently disagree with the message in the novel. The story of the Evil Queen is well-told and heartbreaking, and I loved the idea that evil characters have as much history and motivation as good characters. However, nothing can justify or pardon the Evil Queen emotionally abandoning and attempting to murder her stepdaughter. The novel seems to attempt to push readers in that direction. While I felt sympathy for the Evil Queen, I would not, as many of the characters did, pardon her actions.The characters pop off the page. Alex is a lively know-it-all too smart for her own good. Connor is a smart aleck who doesn’t see he’s just as whip-smart as his sister. Colfer is known for his quick wit, a trait that shows very much in Connor’s dialogue. His way of pointing out fairytale plot holes and absurdity is both enlightening and hilarious.In comparison to other fantasy novels for this age range, such as Percy Jackson and Septimus Heap, Land of Stories simply does not measure up. It is clear that Colfer is, primarily, a screenwriter. While the characters and dialogue are vibrant, the narration is dull to plodding at some points. The action sequences felt very bland and were difficult to follow. The descriptions never painted a completely clear landscape in my head.I can’t help but think this novel needed a much heavier editor’s pen. The writing and release of this novel happened exceptionally fast, probably because of the legions of Chris Colfer fans clamoring for it, and that proved to be a detriment to the novel.Land of the Stories is a fine debut novel, but ultimately, I found that Colfer has considerable room for improvement as a novelist.

  • Rachel Sharpe
    2019-06-23 12:26

    I really tried to like this book. I just couldn't do it. The dialogue and narrative is stilted, and the descriptions are just weird sometimes. (I'm still trying to figure out how metal chains "rustle".) Despite all this, I might have liked the book if the characters were even remotely likable or realistic. They weren't. Every character was so fake. I couldn't make it past chapter three. I tried. I really did, but this book just had too many fundamental problems.

  • Jennifer Macdonald
    2019-06-13 14:48

    I can't believe that they have a page for this book. it's not coming out till next year. when it comes out I'm so buying this book. It's great that Chris Colfer is expanding his horizion with Glee, making a movie, making a pilot for Disney and writing 2 books. My bb is going far

  • Alyssa (Books Take You Places)
    2019-06-06 10:41

    Originally reviewed on Books Take You Places.Alex and Conner are doing their best to get by. Having recently lost their father to an accident, the twins live with their overworked mother in a small rental home and rely on one another for comfort. Alex is an overachiever, the teacher’s pet and the logical one of the two, whereas Conner is the comedian, and the more impulsive twin. Both children hold memories of their father close and look upon his stories when they need comfort. On their twelfth birthday, their grandmother comes to visit and brings her very old, very special storybook for them as a present. This book opens up a different world for the children in which the fairy tale characters they grew up reading about are real. The only problem here is that, not only are the heroes and princesses real, but also the Evil Queen and big bad wolves are real as well. These well known villains are on a hunt to find items for a wishing spell; the same items that the twins are hunting in order to wish themselves back home to their mother. Through this quest the twins meet a very pregnant Cinderella, a very vain Red Riding Hood, a few King Charmings, and a host of other well known fantastical characters.Anyone who knows me know that I love a good retelling and apparently the publisher was describing this one as “The Chronicles of Narnia meets Shrek.” Besides the falling through a wardrobe book to a fairy tale land, this book is nothing like Narnia. It would be easy to compare this to the numerous retellings out there today and I’ll admit that as I was reading I was thinking of the ways the book reminded me of Once Upon a Time, The 10th Kingdom, and yes, Shrek. However, while Chris Colfer was reminding me of all of the things I love about these former retellings, he was also showing me something different. New sides of old characters, surprisingly romantic interludes and a new kickass heroine.One thing I loved even more than the characters in this novel was the different worlds that the author created. I’m a big fan of epic world building and Colfer penned the settings in a way that made it easy to see in my mind. When Conner asked, “What’s up with all the glitter?” while in the Fairy Kingdom, I really saw it sparkling.When the twins traveled to the Thornbush Pit, I felt myself cringing away as if I was the one who had to venture to the bottom. The only thing missing from this element was a good, detailed map of the kingdoms. I actually drew one for myself so I could keep track of where the twins were headed. (Note: this was an unedited ARC so the finished copy may include an awesome map!)I’ll be honest, I was wary going into this story. I know many of you had the same thought in your mind when you saw that the author of this novel was a well-known tv actor. To be quite honest, had I not received an ARC of this novel I might not have picked it up for a number of reasons. But let me tell you something, I am so glad that I did. I am beyond thrilled with this story and really rather impressed at Mr. Chris Colfer. Bravo, Kurt! Take that NYADA!This excerpt provides the reader with a glimpse at the twins and their personalities. Primarily Conner and his humorous jibes toward his sister:“Grazing around a perfect little stream ahead of them, to their amazement, was a herd of unicorns. They were beautiful: white with silver horns, silver hooves, and silver manes.Conner’s forehead wrinkled, and his mouth dropped open. ‘Oh, jeez,’ he said. ‘That’s the most obnoxious thing I’ve ever seen in my life!’‘I want to pet one!’ Alex said, and ran toward them.‘Alex, be careful!’ Conner said. ‘They could have rabies!’‘Unicorns don’t have rabies, Conner!’ Alex said.You don’t know where those horns have been!’ Conner called out.Alex walked up to the herd, slowing her pace so she wouldn’t spook them. They were so majestic and graceful, she just had to stop and admire them for a moment. One saw her and walked toward her…” (Page 262.)This story was far from perfect but there were parts that made me laugh out loud, parts that made me a little misty eyed and parts that made me marvel at the level of angst, love and devotion in a middle grade novel. I highly recommend it to readers of all ages.*I received an unedited ARC from the publisher at BEA 2012!

  • Melanie (TBR and Beyond)
    2019-06-20 12:24

    “A villain is just a victim whose story hasn’t been told.” This one breaks my heart, I was sure this would be a higher rating. The Wishing Spelltook me forever to finish, I really pushed on it. I probably should have given up after awhile but I was trying so hard to convince myself that I liked this book. Why would I do that? Mostly because this book should have won me over so easily. It had all my favorite elements: middle-grade adventure, fairytale-retelling and lots of fun recognizable characters. This book was such a disappointment for me. I did get excited to see the crazy amount of fairy tale and nursery rhyme (loved that they were included as well) characters that were in the story. I did find the Red-Riding Hood plot pretty entertaining but the rest of the book fell pretty flat. Oh, and Mr. Frog was a hoot. I wasn't big on Chris Colfer's writing style (I am a fan of his acting though). It was very simplistic and quite clunky. The sentences were short and not that descriptive. At first I was going to give this book some slack because it's for a younger audience (6-12 probably) but I really couldn't do that because middle-grade should be held up to the same standard as anything else. Middle-grade gave us masterpieces like Harry Potter and The Chronicles of Narnia. Middle-grade can mean some very quality writing that all ages can enjoy. Another big issue with this book is that there was NO sense of danger for me at all. I mean they would get into dangerous situations but nothing seemed very urgent to them and everything moved too fast so things were over before they began. I think he put too many characters into one book and so we really couldn't get to know most of them that well. I know a lot of people really like this series and this would probably be a fun read for younger children. It just didn't work for me. I'm sad that I won't be continuing the series because I know later on in the series characters like The Queen of Hearts and Merlin show up. I can't say it's not worth a read because it might work for you. I would definitely suggest this book to read with your children as small as five or six.

  • Charlotte
    2019-06-26 11:37

    Initial Excitement:I freaking love Chris Colfer, so excited for this!My Review:The Land of Stories was a delightful tale for anyone who ever enjoyed any fairy tale whatsoever. Even when our favorite tales ended, they were still continuing in this world. For example, Cinderella is pregnant and the Evil Queen is in Snow White's dungeon. Alex and Conner were realistic children who had to track down some impossible items, and reading about their journey was really fun.First off, this book is gorgeous. I loved the map-insert that was before the title page. I pulled it out all the time, and scanned it while reading. Honestly, it was distracting! The illustrations at the beginning of every chapter reminded me of Harry Potter. So, if you need a book to put on display, this one is for you!Even though it was a Middle Grade novel, there were some raunchy innuendos every once in a while. (Most often there were a part of Conner's dialogue.) I doubt younger children would realize them though. I found some of them funny too, and I could really see Chris' humor coming out and that personalized the novel. The plot twists were somewhat predictable, and there were very cheesy romance moments. The beginning starts off with some sad memories, but the children developed over the course and at the end were happy. This change was clear, and I got teary at the end because it was so easy to be swayed by their happiness. I can not wait until the next book!

  • jaroda
    2019-06-07 09:54

    This was just as much fun as I remembered. I can't wait to finally dive into the sequels. Perfect for fans of the TV show ONCE UPON A TIME.

  • Peyton Reads
    2019-06-25 09:41


  • Cassie-la
    2019-06-19 14:48

    REVIEW ALSO ON: Land of Stories revolves around two twins obsessed with fairy tales. There’s brainy Alex who loves to learn, and the Bart to her Lisa, her brother Conner. Conner is one of the few likeable characters, with a great sense of humor. This is slightly ruined when Colfer makes sure to tell us Conner is funny without meaning to be. When things in their life are at their lowest (their father recently died and their birthday looks like it will be a meager one), the duo literally fall into their grandmother’s book of fairy tales. One plus of this novel included Colfer not going out of his way to bring the twin’s father back to life. I hate any story or movie that panders to children and make them think they can speak to dead loved ones through Snowmen or reunite their divorced parents. It gives them impossible expectations.Inside this familiar new world the twins meet Froggy, a man cursed to be a frog who conveniently tells them everything they need to know. All the kingdoms in the land combined make up the Happily Ever After Assembly and are ruled over by Rapunzel, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella and Little Red Riding Hood. Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, and Cinderella are married to Chance, Chase, and Chandler Charming. A prince named Chandler, really? Their fourth brother Charlie is missing and assumed dead. We learn Red Riding Hood’s kingdom succeeded which led to the formation of the Big Bad Wolf Pack and the Fairy Council (Mother Goose is a fairy for some reason) is in charge of keeping the trolls and goblins at bay. Spoiler warning: They’re pretty bad at it. Now that the good (or rather not as bad) is out of the way, onto the bad. And oh boy is it bad. AKA worse.The first thing this novel suffers from is being overly wordy. At 448 pages, it’s far too long for a children’s book. Even Harry Potter didn’t hit the 400 page mark until people started getting killed off, and by then Rowling’s characters were teenagers. This problem could have been fixed had Colfer limited the scope of his premise. Not only do his characters need to visit nine places, they also need to collect eight magical objects to complete a spell that will take them home. There’s a reason fairy tales usually stick to the rule of three!Another painful facet of the novel is the overuse of metaphors and similes. Enough to kill a small woodland animal. They were grating enough in Robert Kirkman’s Rise of the Governor, and were equally painful in this children’s story. I have included my favorites (and by favorites I mean the ones that make me want to stab myself most) below.“… Like fireflies in a cave.” I hate when caves are full of fireflies.“… Diverted her attention to him like a paper clip to a magnet.” Why a paper clip? Why not tacks? Or other magnets?“He handed the poster back to his sister as if it were infected with rabies.” You’d hand your sister something covered in rabies!?!“… Clutching onto her brother like a monkey on a tree.” Eating lice off of him simultaneously.As if these metaphors and similes- which pulled me out of the story- weren’t bad enough, there was also various ridiculousness peppered throughout. First, is the belief that Colfer seems to think emotions and feelings affect the entire body. For example, “Curiosity had taken over her entire body”. When does curiosity engulf all your senses? Maybe jealousy, anxiety, or feelings of happiness but certainly not curiosity. My toes have never felt curious. Ever. Unless I’m just broken. We are also told that this is the only time ever that Snow White raises her voice. Ever. Other face palm worthy examples include. “Hugs so tight they would almost pop” and the plot holes. Oh so many plot holes.Perhaps the most frustrating aspect of the narrative however is the ease with which the twins get out of sticky situations. The great thing about children’s adventure stories are how the characters use their brains and ingenuity to get out of problems. In this book, the children merely rely on their own luck and good fortune. When they’re about to be eaten by a witch, Conner makes a wish that she become a vegetarian, which she randomly grants. Realizing the futility of getting Cinderella’s glass slipper, it magically appears in their bag. They’re rescued by everyone and their mother, including the Little Mermaid who for some reason is sea foam, despite becoming a daughter of the air in the original story. And don’t even get me started on that damn ending.

  • Adrián Biháry
    2019-06-16 08:30

    *4,5*Ahhhh. Neskutočne milá kniha, nevinná, ale zato má v sebe množstvo krásnych myšlienok a celkovo má príbeh jedno dôležité a krásne posolstvo. Keď som sa dopočul, že Colfer bude vydávať knihu, myslel som si, že to bude presne tá kniha od nejakej celebrity, ktorú ani dotyčná osoba vskutku nenapísala, proste len aby boli money. No (to by som nebol ja) Chrisa som si preklepol vďaka rôznym rozhovorom, a tento chlapík má príbehy a písanie už dlho v srdci a sú to jeho najväčšie vášne - tým ešte väčšmi pochopíte túto knihu. Conner a Alex sú neskutočná dvojka, sú ako dve strany mozgu, Kvak bol super kjút, rozprávkové postavičky boli fajn a Červená čiapočka, klobúk dole, dievča, pár krát si ma rozosmiala. Čarovné zaklínadlo je presne tá kniha, ktorú si chcete prečítať a ktorej všetky tie reklamy vôbec neklamú. Presne ako sa hovorí na obale, tejto knihe nesiaha Disney ani po členky a ja sa neviem dočkať, kedy to uvidím ako film, ktorý (ak sa bude držať knihy, dúfajme) bude lepší než čokoľvek disneyovského. Priznávam, ku koncu mi behali po chrbte zimomriavky, usmieval som sa ako drbko a do očí sa mi tisli slzy - mal som pocit, akoby som s postavami všetko prežíval. Pol hviezdičku strhávam za to, že niektoré akčné scény som už nebral ako akčné, nakoľko som vždy vedel, že to akosi dobre dopadne, ale inak proti knihe nemám vôbec nič. Definitívne odporúčam! :-)