Hatching Magic

by Ann Downer

Paperback, 2005



Local notes

PB Dow




Aladdin (2005), Edition: 1ST EDITION ALADDIN, 256 pages


When a thirteenth-century wizard confronts twenty-first century Boston while seeking his pet dragon, he is followed by a rival wizard and a very unhappy demon, but eleven-year-old Theodora Oglethorpe may hold the secret to setting everything right.


Nebraska Golden Sower Award (Nominee — 2006)
Great Stone Face Book Award (Nominee — 2005)
Nutmeg Book Award (Nominee — Intermediate — 2008)


Original language


Original publication date


Physical description

256 p.; 5.3 inches

User reviews

LibraryThing member Nini345
a book about a young girl completely oblivious to the magical world finds dragons ,demons and a wizard that came through a bolt hole and is facing his biggest challenge yet
LibraryThing member Wombat
A wizard from Medieval England visits modern-day Boston looking for his lost Wyvern (a dragon-like creature). He receives unexpected help from a 20th century wizard he meets in Harvard Square. Meanwhile, a young girl, stuck at home while her Dad is out of town on a research field trip, has the
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adventure of her life.

This is a great fit for my daughter, who is still a relative newcomer to the world of fantasy. She likes cats, and the Wyvern is rather cat-like. She likes humorous stories, and there are a lot of amusing scenes. She doesn't like stories that are scary or stressful, and this is nice and light. We live in the Boston area, and there is a lot of local color; many area landmarks, both large and small, make appearances in the book.

It's hard to evaluate the book as an adult reader. Reading it aloud in small installments changes the reading experience substantially (for me, at least). The plot and the various aspects of the fanstasy world are entertaining, but nothing particularly surprising. (I've been reading fantasy novels for 30+ years.) It certainly moves along at a good clip. It would make a nice light vacation read---something you could zip through in an afternoon at the beach.

Other reviewers have made comparisons to Harry Potter. I guess these days any fantasy story for kids is suggested as something Harry Potter fans might like. In this case, the similarity comes from the fact that it's another story set in alternate contemporary reality where most people aren't aware that a small group of people are wizards. Beyond that though, the story has (for me) a very different feel. It's definitely a lighter read than the HP novels---both in terms of plot complexity and sense of peril and also in simple terms of page count!
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LibraryThing member beserene
This was a fun little book, though not one that stays with you. There are dragons (wyverns) and wizards (of a sort) and villains (along with their demon familiars), but, through the accident of a time wormhole thingy, they run around in modern urban America, a slightly altered reality, and get
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tangled up with an ordinary girl who has always wanted a dragon. Enjoyable at the time, and with some funny moments, this is definitely a fine read for those younger fans of Harry Potter and other fantasy books.
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LibraryThing member icarmi
Gideon a 13th century wizard loses his wyvern in the year 2002 while a girl who just finished fifth grade is spending the most boring summer of her life.
LibraryThing member Bronsonmatarau
why did i pick this book up....
i picked this book up because of the title it had beacuase i thought it would be a real catchy title the picture on the front also drew my attention to this book.

why did i finish this book
i finished this book because of the attention and action it had during the
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book.i also wanted to finish because i want to seen ending
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LibraryThing member gilroy
An interesting read, I must say. Magical tunnels that connect centuries, allowing people to travel and create havoc.

It feels open ended, like nothing resolved itself by the end of the book, even though the book's initial plot does complete. For the grade level it's written for, this is a great
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book. It doesn't preach, but does allow someone to think about possibilities outside the box.

From my personal perspective, not my usual cup of tea.
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LibraryThing member Tina_Ervin
A complex, but fun tale of a time traveling dragon, her wizard, a professor, an evil wizard, and a young gamer. Whew!
LibraryThing member Cheryl_in_CC_NV
Ok, there wasn't much plot. And the characters were kinda flat & vague. But the details about magic and wyverns and secret clubs, and even about Boston and Theodora's (Dodo's) family, was fascinating, even to this adult. I can just imagine how I would have loved it were I 10. Also, the drawings of
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the baby wyvern that opened each chapter were absolutely precious. No credit given, so they must be by Downer herself (?).


Ok, this is bad. I picked this up the other day getting ready to release it via Bookcrossing, and decided to read it first. I read the whole thing, formulated a review in my mind, came here, and only at that time did I find I've read it already. It's only 1 1/2 years later and I don't remember reading it before!

(The original date read is August 26, 2012.)

This time I was slightly less impressed, but in general had a similar reaction. The world-building was interesting, contemporary Boston was interesting, the adventure was ok, the characters were pretty darn blah. The whole thing was (indeed!) not memorable.
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LibraryThing member jjmcgaffey
Cute, nothing great. Multiple threads come together rather abruptly, and after the deep knowledge of what the various individuals were thinking and feeling as well as saying and doing, the climactic scenes are a bit sketchy. There's several clever bits to the story - the girl obsessed with an
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animated show about wyverns getting tangled with real wyverns, and a lot of other magic. Chocolate, and some serious consequences. Odd that some magically-useful species have gone extinct, if wormholes to the past are easy and stable... It's clearly setting up a series, with a hidden Big Bad; there is, apparently, another book, and I'll keep an eye out for it - might be worth reading. But I'm not particularly excited about it.
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