The Familiars: Review


Intriguing, dangerous and entertaining, all these words describe this compelling story.  The Familiars, the first book of four, was authored by Adam Jay Epstein and Andrew Jacobson. The first book was published September 2, 2010. This fantastic and magical story centers around a simple alley cat named Aldwyn who lives in a small town called Bridgetower.


Aldwyn is going through his everyday routine of stealing food from the town fishmonger, but little does he know that the fishmonger hired a bounty hunter to catch him in the act. As he takes his prize, he realizes the trick. He bolts outside dodging and outsmarting the bounty hunter. After losing his fish, he runs into a nearby pet store for safety.


Inside the store is a never before seen array of animals: two-tailed lemurs, a pocket-sized dragon and many more. He hides in a cage until an old man and a young boy dressed in cloaks enter. The boy is a young wizard named Jack who is looking for a Familiar (a wizard’s magical animal companion). He chose Aldwyn even though he could not be a true familiar as he was not magical (Jack does not know this).


At the cottage Jack’s older sister, Marianne, a boy named Dalton and their teacher, a great wizard named Kalstaff live. Both children have a familiar, a blue-jay named Skylar and a tree frog named Gilbert.  Skylar is very smart, tends to state random, is the familiar of Dalton and can cast illusions with her mind. She doesn’t trust Aldwyn at first unlike her friend the tree frog who loves hanging out with Aldwyn. Gilbert loves to eat all the time. He can sometimes see the future in puddles and gets afraid very easily.


One night while they are outside a prophecy stating that three young wizards from Stone Runlet would save the world. The next morning, Kalstaff’s old friend, Queen Loranella who has been known as deathly ill comes to the cottage. An unexpected turn comes when she kills Kalstaff and takes the three students. Kalstaff casts a protection spell on the students that can last three days. The three familiars are left to save their loyals and stop the Queen from her devious plans.


This quick paced story is magically fun and entertaining. Plenty of action is present throughout the whole series that consists of four books. A movie adaptation has been planned for years and is planned to be released in 2018. These are great to read for those that enjoyed the magic world of Harry Potter. This story is sure to keep you glued to the page.

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