Title: The Secret Science of Magic
Author: Melissa Keil
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary
Publication Date: April 1st 2017
My Rating: 3/5 stars
“The unsolvable problem: If Sophia is a genius, why can’t she crack the puzzle of what to do with her life?
Fact: Sophia is smart. As in, certified-child-prodigy, breezing-through-uni-subjects-even-though-she’s-only-in-year-twelve smart. This terrifies her, because geniuses have a tendency to end up as recluses and weirdos – and with her current social ineptness, she’s halfway there already.
Truth: Joshua is good at magic tricks, ignoring most things about year twelve, and not thinking at all about life after high school.
Fact: Sophia can’t even talk to her best friend Elsie about her anxieties, because Elsie is firmly focused on her own future – and on plans that will mean leaving Sophia behind.
Truth: Joshua has had a secret crush on Sophia since forever, but he doesn’t have forever to act on it.
Fact: There are some things no amount of genius can prepare you for … and the messiness of the real world is one of them.
Truth: Timing is everything.”
Thank you to Hardie Grant Egmont for sending me a copy of this in exchange for an honest review. The Secret Science of Magic is the first book I read by Melissa Keil. And I really liked it. It was a quick, light and fluffy read.
I loved the characters a lot. I loved how although Sophia and Joshua were different personality-wise, they were compatible with one another and were so cute together. Joshua’s obsession for magic was adorable and it made me interested in wanting to see more magic. Despite my love for these adorable characters, I couldn’t connect with them. I just couldn’t find any way to emphasise with them.
I think the incorporation of a magic obsessed boy and a science/maths geeky girl suited this storyline. It made the story more real because the characters weren’t these “popular” people who we usually get in YA contemporary. I loved how each person stayed true to themselves and how they didn’t change for someone else.
But I loved the side characters, the friends Sophia and Joshua have. Sophia’s best friend, Elsie, was kind to Sophia and it was so sweet to know that they were always there for one another. Yes they fought, but let’s face it, what friends don’t fight? I loved Joshua’s friends even more. They were all cute and fun and just lovable. They were all so supportive of Joshua too, and the interactions between them always amused me.
I loved how this book represented Melbourne well. Sophia is of Sri Lankan descent and her classmates from various ethnicities, which stays true to the diversity found in Melbourne as they are many ethnicities in Melbourne, especially in a school. I also related to this book in a sense that I understood where things were. Most book, if they are set in Australia, are set in Sydney. But this book is set in Melbourne and my face just grinned at every familiar place. Hooray for #LoveOZYA
Because I received the ARC, there was a card attached to the cover and when it was found in the book, I squealed in excitement because it meant something to the story. Plus it’s very pretty too. But the cover is so pretty too that I am tempted to buy a finished copy.
Overall, I enjoyed this book but wouldn’t say it’s my favourite. I think many would like this if you are looking for something quick to read. I will definitely be checking out Melissa’s other works because I definitely enjoyed this and I’ve heard amazing things about her other works.