Who hasn’t made a wish at one time or another? Whether on a shooting star or dropping a penny in a wishing well, the lure of potential magic remains strong even as an adult (well, for this one anyway!)
Felix Jones is downhearted, lonely and feeling overlooked, both in school and at home. The closeness he once shared with his older sister, Rebecca, seems to have disappeared now she is at college and too busy for him. When Felix throws a penny and makes his own special wish in the town fountain, he is amazed to meet the usually invisible and wonderfully named Rupus Beewinkle, who reveals himself to be a wishkeeper, currently in need of an apprentice to help him protect the wishes of Felix’s hometown of Whittlestone.
When Rupus invites him to visit his hidden house, Snugwarm, and introduces him to the life of a wishkeeper, Felix finds himself suddenly whisked into a magical new world, where bicycles can be created from umbrellas and a coat stand! Rupus explains that he needs help with a long list of wishes that have gone wrong and Felix soon learns that he must help him save the town’s wishes from the dark clutches of the Wishsnatcher. When Rupus himself disappears, it is up to Felix to take on the task singlehandedly, but as time runs out to save everything he knows and loves, is he brave and resourceful enough to tackle the beast on his own?
This heartwarming story has just the right amount of dark and light to keep readers both gripped and enchanted, and Rachel Sanson’s illustrations add a perfect magical touch to the pages, (although the Wishsnatcher looks quite cute rather than scary!)
A perfect adventure story for developing young readers, with a positive and hopeful message about the power of wishes and believing in yourself. As the author herself says, I hope this book reminds you to wish boldly.