The Grand Tour; The Mislaid Magician (Patricia Wrede & Caroline Stevermer) 3*

Just sequels, boo.

Sorcery and Cecilia was a perfect gem of a book, and these two follow-ups are just muddy little sequels.  In The Grand Tour, the girls tramp around Europe with their new husbands.  The foursome travel together, so instead of letters we read Kate’s diary and Cecy’s official deposition.  The narrative bounces between the two, and it’s a touch difficult to keep track of who’s telling the story.

Also, there’s a lot of coincidence going on.  Plot elements fall out of the sky like showers of hail.

The Mislaid Magician does a little better by returning to letter-writing.  Ten years later, Kate and Cecy have six feisty children between them, and some nebulously drawn baddies are up to something bad.  It has to do with railroads and ley lines, which Cecy finds confusing and so do I.  Thomas and James also start writing to each other, possibly because the girls have gotten too boring.  Really it’s creepy how fictional (female) characters have to pass the baton as soon as their offspring start walking and talking.

For those of you who loved Sorcery and Cecilia and want something more, I recommend re-reading Sorcery and Cecilia.  Sorcery and Cecilia is just as good as Sorcery and Cecilia, I hear.

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