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Author: Linda Chapman

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Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers, 2009

Material: hard cover

Summary: Milly, Michael, Jason and Jess have lots of change in their young lives. They just moved from London to a town in the countryside. They are step siblings (and they don't like each other much). And their parents have opened a bookstore. Millie and Jason are bored, so they decide to look through the used books waiting to be shelved. They pick up The Genie Handbook: Grant Wishes like an Expert in Six Easy Steps.

To their disappointment, the book is written in a foreign language. Just as they are ready to put it down, the book begins to tremble, and out pops Skribble, the bookworm who is the caretaker for the book. Skribble guides the genie training for the four siblings. With each step, more of the book becomes English, they gain power, and learn new things. Along the way, a mysterious couple with creepy eyes seems to be following them. Who are they, and what do they want? This is a fantasy adventure that can be shared aloud or read independently.

Type of Reading: bedtime story, family reading, anytime reading, read aloud book, independent reading

Recommended Age: read together: 8 and Up; read yourself: 10 and Up

Interest Level: 8 and Up

Reading Level: 4

Age of Child: Teen STAR Review Team, Be the Star You Are!™

Young Reader Reaction: This book was moderately funny, and I think it would be hilarious for young readers. The book is appropriate for all ages, and I recommend it for young readers in elementary or middle school. I would recommend it as a gift because it is quite entertaining.

Adult Reader Reaction: Be a Genie revived bedtime story reading in our house! We read this with our 11-year-old from start to finish over several nights. There was just enough suspense to keep us going, and plenty of humor, too.

Pros: This is an action-packed, humorous and wholesome story that can be shared with kids of all ages.

Cons: None.

Borrow or Buy: Borrow, at least. This would be a great family read for a newly-blended family.


Educational Themes: There are lots of themes you can explore with this novel: family, teamwork, problem solving, and strangers!

Notes: The publisher donated a copy of this book knowing that we would consider it for review and provide an independent, unbiased profile. This book will be given to a nonprofit to help readers in need.

Literary Categories: Fiction - adventure, fantasy, family, humor

Date(s) Reviewed: April 2013

Other Reviews: See Critics' Reviews and reader feedback at and


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