‘Clash of the Totems and the Lost Magaecians’ by Yonnie Garber is a coming of age story for teenagers that focuses on Ellery Brown. The 13 year-old knows very little about her past and her family, growing up with her mother in a remote village with no recollection of her father or extended family. When her school is closed down by a fire, she finds herself in the Earth Science School for Magaecians, and her family history leads her on an adventure of spells and totems against the villainous Saxon Nash. I liked the strong ecological theme throughout, with the Magaecians focused on a life with nature at its heart, knowing that Humanity’s time is limited if they continue to destroy the earth as they do. I also liked the twist on the usual battle between good and evil tropes, with the Magaecians finding power and strength in words, and negativity and physical violence discouraged. I found some similarities in this book with Harry Potter and even the Power Rangers at one point, as the children are encouraged to meditate to “become” their animal totems and “unite” together. This is an action packed adventure and coming-of-age story with an inventive and unique twist, ‘Clash of the Totems and the Lost Magaecians’ is set up to be the start of an interesting new series.
Charlotte Walker, A LoveReading4Kids Ambassador