Publisher: Sterling Children's Books
Publish Date: April 3, 2012
Source: ARC from Sarah @ The Book Life :]
Enter a wonderful world filled with real magic, mystery...and danger.
As if being small for his age and also having S. Horten as his name isn't bad enough, now 10-year-old is forced to move far away from all his friends. But on his very first day in his new home, Stuart's swept up in an extraordinary adventure: the quest to find his great-uncle Tony -- a famous magician who literally disappeared off the face of the earth -- and Tony's marvelous, long-lost workshop. Along the way, Stuart reluctantly accepts help from the annoying triplets next door...and encounters trouble from another magician who's also desperate to get hold of Tony's treasures.
Horten’s Miraculous Mechanisms was a super cute middle grade read with everything the subtitle promises: magic, mystery, and adventure.
A lot of times middle grade tends to have extravagant, unbelievable adventures, but Horten’s stays a little closer to home. Stuart’s entire adventure is contained all in the little town of Beeton, but don’t let that take the wind out of your sails. Stuart’s close-to-home adventure makes it feel all the more real. Almost like something that could happen to a normal kid which makes it all the more magical.
I love that often in middle grade the parents are sort of a mystery to the kid in the story and that’s definitely the case for Stuart. Both his parents are the scholarly use-lots-of-big-words types and that’s not really 10-year-old Stuart’s style, but he loves them all the same and they love him back. I love the simplicity in this type of relationship. It’s definitely something you don’t come across in YA so I find it fun to get a look into a different parent-child relationship dynamic.
The neighbor triplets are kind of a hoot. I love that since they’re identical, Stuart is forever mixing them up. Though, April does begin to stand out on her own and prove to be good friend material for poor, lonely Stuart.
I loved all the fun characters that showed up along the way and the touch of magic that was thrown into all the mystery and adventure.
The Nutshell: Horten’s Miraculous Mechanisms is a fun middle grade, especially if you love a good adventure mystery. I know if I’d have read this is a kid I would have gone around for weeks afterwards looking for little secrets hidden in everyday life since many of Stuart’s answers to the mystery were found right under everyone’s noses. If you love a magic (the illusion kind, but maybe a little of the other too) and are itching for a fun, quick adventure then definitely try Horten’s.
Series: I believe so, but Goodreads isn't clear.