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Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Magical Animal Adoption Agency: The Enchanted Egg. Written by Kallie George and illustrated by Alexandra Boiger. Harper, 2015. $16.99 ages 8 and up

"Then she made a final round of the Agency, turning some lights on for the hatchling, so it wouldn't be scared. Even so, after she locked the door, she lingered on the top step, unwilling to leave, until at last she heard a humph from the gnome's direction. She made her way down the path, stopping when she reached him. "The egg hatched," she whispered, "and the animal is loose."

If you are looking for a new series to share with a transitional reader - a child who is exploring longer texts with familiar characters, you might want to check out the Magical Animal Adoption Agency. This is the second book, and the second one that I have read. While you can read this one without first sharing Clover's Luck, it is important to know that the enchanted egg that is the focus this time around was rescued at the end of the first book by Mr. Jams, the owner of the agency, after a long trek to find it.

Clover, who loves animals and proved that she was worthy of Mr. Jams' trust when he left her in charge that first time, is again tasked to take care of things while he goes in search of an expert on unusual, magical eggs. Since no one knows what the egg might produce, Clover would like to think that it will not hatch before Mr. Jams returns.

While he is gone, Clover shows readers that she is trustworthy, astute and sympathetic to the plight of the animals in her care. We meet the clients along with her - giants looking for a pet that will guard their golden goose, an allergic unicorn, and a ghost who bakes cupcakes - each looking for the perfect magical pet for themselves.

Clover is more self-assured this time, having proven worthy the first time she was given a seemingly formidable task. When she checks the nest she has so carefully created for the polka-dot egg, she finds the shell broken, and the baby missing. With the arrival of visitors looking to adopt a pet for themselves and needing Clover's guidance, she has little time to look for the hatchling. Will she find the baby before anything happens to it?

The sequel is equally as rewarding as the first book. The series is sure to attract many fans. Let's hope we won't have to wait too long to see what Clover is up to next.

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