Author: Stefan Bachmann
Genre: Middle-Grade, Fantasy
Rating: 5 Stars
When a scarecrow climbs over the garden wall, delivering twelve-year-old orphan Zita Brydgeborn a letter saying she has inherited a distant castle, she jumps at the chance of adventure. But little does she know that she is about to be thrust into a centuries-old battle between good and evil. Blackbird Castle was once home to a powerful dynasty of witches, all of them now dead under mysterious circumstances. Zita is the last of her line. And Zita, unfortunately, doesn’t know the first thing about being a witch.
As she begins her lessons in charms and spells with her guardian, Mrs. Cantanker, Zita makes new allies—a crow, a talking marble head, two castle servants just her age named Bram and Minnifer, and the silent ghost of a green-eyed girl. But who is friend and who is foe? Zita must race to untangle her past and find the magic to save the home she’s always hoped for. Because whatever claimed the souls of her family is now after her.
WARNING – SPOILERS MAY ENSUE BEYOND THIS POINT – REVIEW BELOW
Cinders & Sparrows by Stefan Bachmann was a fantastic Middle-Grade Fantasy Adventure, full of magic, deception, the dead, and an adorable little ghost puppy. What more could a reader ask for? I sincerely enjoyed every moment of this fantastic tale.
The characters were endearing or in the case of a certain wanna-be-witch whom I shall not name… at least interesting. The setting was gloriously rich and full of fantastical creatures and magical nonsense to delight and enthrall any reader. The narrative was well-written, well-edited, and sucked me into the story from the very beginning until the very end.
I ended up reading through this little gem in one sitting and would heartily recommend it to any middle-grade reader (or older). Don’t let the fact that the main character is only 12 keep you from enjoying this book. You won’t regret it.