Published by Day Leitao on July 30, 2018
Series: Portals to Whyland #1
Genres: Middle Grade, Fantasy & Magic
Source: eARC from Publisher
Not special. Not chosen. But she’s got magical shoes.
14-year old Karina doesn’t know what she wants, but knows what she’s found—fascinating silver shoes. Fascinating, dangerous, and potentially evil. On the upside, they do bring cool visitors. When a princess invites her to go to Whyland, of course she accepts. There’s that little “let’s destroy the shoes” detail she’s not crazy about, but hey, free trip. Alternate world. Got it?
Perhaps not. Whyland is nothing like she expected. Karina finds herself stuck in a kingdom she doesn’t understand, with no clue on who to trust. Before saving anyone, she’d better save herself—if she figures out how.
For 16-year-old Cayla, destroying the shoes is her much-wanted chance to prove her worth to her father, the king, and gain freedom. It might also be her chance to see Darian after more than one year apart. Does he still like her? Did he ever? But these are not the only questions she finds an answer for. Soon she realizes that all her learning and fighting skills are no match for the truths she’s about to face.
Step into Magic is a fun YA fantasy adventure. If you like books with friendships between girls, subtle romance, and some mystery, get Step into Magic now.
Step into Magic is the first book in the middle grade fantasy series, Portals to Whyland by author Day Leitao. I thought Step into Magic was a solid first book in the series. In some ways, it was solidly in the middle grade category,, but in other ways I did think it was a little busy for a middle grade book, but I will get more into that in a bit. Step into Magic was a fun story about our main character Karina who find a pair of magic shoes, which leads her to a magic land. I really enjoyed the story and I can’t wait to pick up the second book in the Portals to Whyland series.
Karina is fourteen, and what fourteen year old girl would not love to get swept away to a magical world to go on an adventure? What I loved about Step into Magic was that I was instantly hooked with the story. There was no slow start, we got to dive right into the action, which was awesome. I liked Karina. And I liked that as soon as she got to Whyland that the plot got even more interesting. Things are not what they seem in Whyland, and I was really excited to find out more. And I got more and more excited as the story progressed and we started meeting more and more characters and learning more. But then, we got to a point around half way through the book where I thought things got a little too busy. There was a lot going on, and there were a lot of characters. It was harder to keep track of everyone and everything.
I do think by the end of the book, everything kind of evened out, and there is the potential that it will be even better in the next installment, but I do wish there were a handful less characters introduced in this story. I think just focusing on Karina, Cayla, Darian and Sian would have been more than enough. I especially want to see more from Sian, so hopefully he will play a larger role in the next story.
Overall, Step into Magic was a fun magical story that is perfect for middle grade readers who are looking to go on a fast paced magical adventure. I am excited to see where the next book is going to take us.
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