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Reviewed by Tammy Ruggles for Readers' Favorite
Things are Shaking: Invisible Magic Wand, Book Two, by Lois Wickstrom, illustrated by Nicolas Milano, is an adorable and imaginative young reader's fantasy/sci-fi story about a little boy named Caspian, who hasn't been too happy with the kind of birthday presents his grandfather has given him, including an invisible magic wand that can slow down or speed up time. When he says "Stretch time", things speed up. His cousin Belinda is with him, and she wants an invisible magic wand too so that she can slow time down in order to savor her pancakes. But then an earthquake hits, the house shakes, and they are trapped. Is this a good time to use their invisible magic wands?
Wickstrom has created an intriguing story for children that will definitely pique their interest and allow their imagination to explore and be a bit quirky in just the right places. The accompanying images really bring the story to life. These characters are cute and can be funny, but the reality of an earthquake and safety are serious themes that the author touches on. It's a little sobering, but also funny, and I think it's a good, balanced approach to teaching children about the concept of safety. The idea of this family zipping around at hyper-speed in the midst of an earthquake will appeal to youngsters and will be entertaining for adults too. Wickstrom certainly writes with her young audience in mind, giving attention to family, excitement, and fanciful situations. This isn't her only children's book, and it makes me curious to read other stories by her. Things are Shaking: Invisible Magic Wand, Book Two, by Lois Wickstrom, is a cute little book about family, safety, and the fantastic.