Title: The Mystwick School of Musicraft | Author: Jessica Khoury | Publisher: Clarion Books |Genre: Middlegrade | 368 pages
Amelia Jones always dreamed of attending the Mystwick School of Musicraft, where the world’s most promising musicians learn to create magic. So when Amelia botches her audition, she thinks her dream has met an abrupt and humiliating end—until the school agrees to give her a trial period. Amelia is determined to prove herself, vowing to do whatever it takes to become the perfect musician. Even if it means pretending to be someone she isn’t. Meanwhile, a mysterious storm is brewing that no one, not even the maestros at Mystwick, is prepared to contain. Can Amelia find the courage to be true to herself in time to save her beloved school from certain destruction?
I’m so in love with this book. I have been wanting to read it for a while, well, more like, I put it on my list on Scribd and conveniently forgot about it. But then I found it again and coincidentally scrolled through the reviews and read that the audio book is just so much better than the ebook. So I tried. And wow. Guys, I have never enjoyed an audiobook so much.
The world itself is just magical. Not only literally but the whole feel of it, the descriptions, the energy. I love the idea of musicraft. It means that spells can be played with any kind of instrument. Magic uses the music as a conductor to work. Different pieces of music mean different spells. It sounds kind of rigid and technical when I write it like that but let me tell you, the magic is a bit like music itself – it can be technical but also full of soul and improvisation. I loved to learn so much about it and even though I don’t really play an instrument and have never been part of an orchestra I still felt that I understood everything and could appreciate all the hard work the musicians put into their practice and their magic.
The story is sweet, full of feeling. There is hope and grief and determination and friendship and despair and anger and just. so. much. There is a mystery in there, to be solved and while it might not stump a seasoned mystery fan, it was still fun to guess with the rest of the characters.
I absolutely loved the main character, Amelia. She was determined to make her dream come true and worked hard for it. You could see that there was something she desperately wanted and in time you figure out that there is something else that she needs which might just be something entirely different. There is also a mystery to be solved and stakes are just so high for Amelia. I was really rooting for her. I wanted her to have all the friends and that all her dreams would come true and I felt with her and her friends.
Like I said, I listened to the audiobook and it was everything I ever wanted in an audiobook. Suzy Jackson is an amazing narrator and the story is lined with music from an orchestra which makes this whole book an experience. I really recommend to listen to the audiobook if you have the chance. The ebook has nice pictures as far as I have seen but I think the audiobook is better in this case. More immersive.
All in all, I really, really loved this book and it was an absolute highlight for me this year. I’m still trying to find an isolated track so I can just listen to the amazing music. The worldbuilding is top notch and the main character is wonderful. I loved the magic in this book and I loved the story, the mystery of it all. I rooted for the characters, I felt their struggles and their hopes and dreams and I’m just looking forward to the next book so much.
Have you read The Mystwick School of Musicraft or do you have it on your tbr?
I have listened to Mystwick too (in fact it was my first ever audiobook!) and though I too had very high hopes, I was sadly dissappointed. I agree with you that the narration was wonderful, and Amelia was a good main character… but I found the second half of the story extremely repetitive, and that ending was not done well too. Anyway, glad to see you enjoyed it much more than I did!
Yeah, I have heard that from other people. I guess you refer to the part with Amelia trying too hard to be something she was not? Her fight with Jai who really wants her to compose? I get that. Maybe it’s because I did take little breaks while listening that I didn’t feel that so much.
Too bad that you didn’t like it that much. Did you enjoy the audiobook in general though? As a first ever audiobook? 🙂
I really enjoyed how the audiobook had music intertwined with it! I thought that was a really nice touch, and it was the best use of music I’ve experienced in an audiobook.
I loved the music. Amelia’s composition was kinda simple but so beautiful. I wish they had an isolated track of it but I couldn’t find it. It was also great to finally have a name for so many known pieces. 😀
Okay, the book was on my TBR but I think I’m definitely going to have to check out the audiobook now as I’m always on the lookout for a good one! I can tell how much you loved this book and it makes me even more excited to give it a try soon 😊 Great review!
Thank you, Dini! I really enjoyed it. I also reaaaallllly recommend the audiobook and you will definitely have to tell me when you’ve read it. I’m gonna hound you if you don’t! 😉
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