Molly Moon's Incredible Book of Hypnotism is a fabulously jaunty novel, beautifully written and brimming with the stuff of childhood dreams and imaginings.
Meet Molly Moon, an orphan living at Hardwick House with a bunch of other waifs and strays under the watchful eye of the harsh and hairy-faced Miss Anderson. Life at the orphanage is dismal (you know the routine), so Molly spends most of her time living through colourful daydreams. When she discovers a mysterious book on hypnotism in the local library she quickly learns that putting people into a trance can open doors to the most amazing adventures. First of all she hypnotises the entire audience at the local talent contest, bagging herself the prize money. With her winnings, she heads off to New York where her new-found skill enables her to become a Broadway superstar, with the world at her feet. But lurking in the background is sinister stranger with dastardly plans of his own...
Georgia Byng tells Molly Moon's story with a passionate flair that makes both the main character and the world in which she lives unforgettable. The "orphan makes good and beats the evil grown ups" theme is of course irresistible (after all, where would Harry Potter be if his parents had lived happily ever after?), but there is nothing formulaic about this book. Rather, readers are given the opportunity to let their imaginations run totally wild (be honest, who wouldn't jump at the opportunity to make absolutely everyone do exactly as you want them to?), allowing them to sneak a peak at a world where almost anything is possible.
Molly Moon's Incredible Book of Hypnotism is a gem. Colourful characters, the bright lights of the big city, good versus evil, a little bit of magic and a definite moral to the tale: who could resist? The simple answer is don't even bother trying. Molly Moon will have young readers mesmerised before they even get to the end of the first chapter. Age 8 and over. --Susan Harrison [via]