Plot: When Jenna turns 10 she learns that she is the princess of the Castle and that she was strategically switched at birth with the seventh son of a seventh son, Septimus Heap. The Heaps raised Jenna as their own, all the while thinking their baby boy was dead, but once the truth got out, everything started to fall apart. Jenna is being hunted by the evil wizard, DomDaniel, who intends to finish off the royal line, with Jenna. While on the run Jenna bumps into Septimus, known as Boy 412 from the Young Army, and he ends up on the run with her. It’s only later that he learns his true name and that he has a family, quite a large family. Nicko Heap, Jenna, and Septimus end up at their Aunt Zelda’s house facing down the evil DomDaniel and his apprentice, claiming to be Septimus Heap.
Review: This is the first of the Septimus Heap series. The sixth book, Darke, came out earlier this year. These books are on par with the Harry Potter series. They are up-beat and quick paced. Though they may seem long, you will fly right through them on a magical adventure. In this first book, Jenna and Septimus learn who they really are, the princess of the Castle and the seventh son of a seventh son, respectively. Jenna and Septimus have a run in with the evil wizard DomDaniel and must some how survive against all odds. Sage has created a series that children will enjoy reading and won’t be able to wait for the next one. At the end of each book she does a chapter titled “After…” and goes through all of the sub-characters you met throughout the book and tells you what happened to them. The humorous script and quirky characters will pull you in.
Reading Level/Interest Level: 6.1/5-8 graders
Similar Materials: Harry Potter, by R. K. Rowling, Artemis Fowl, by Eoin Colfer
Reader’s Advisory: This is the first book of the Septimus Heap series. Other books include Flyte, Physik, Queste, Syren, and Darke. I have read them all and can honestly say they are fantastic. There is a large set of characters, each with their own personality. The story is mainly set around Septimus, but you see a fair amount of Jenna as well. If you want to take a ride through a magical world, then you should read this book.