Half Magic was written in 1954 so we began by discussing the things in the story that felt outdated and the things that we thought felt very current. Some thought Martha's adventure which began at the movie theater was a little outdated but overall we felt that the story could have been written today.
A few members identified the most with Jane because she is the oldest sibling (like they are) but a few believed themselves to be most like Katherine, someone they saw as very smart and good at making decisions.
We all loved and totally agreed with the children's assessment of grownups (pages 122) and have experienced grownups like these in our own lives. :)
We all liked Mr. Smith but understood Jane's inital reaction to him. She remembers their biological father the most and it's hard for her to think of him being "replaced." But Mr. Smith is such a likeable guy and so fun to be around (and a believer in magic - rare in an adult) that it made sense for her to come around in the end.
We've all heard the expression "Be Careful What You Wish For" and we talked about what that means and why getting your wish might not always be the best thing. We looked at examples in the story of wishes that didn't go very well, from Carrie, the talking cat, to what happened to the children's mother in the newspaper office.
Our favorite parts of the story were Katherine's wish to travel back in time to King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. We were also intrigued by Jane's wish to be part of another family. That adventure turned out to be more scary than anything and made us think hard about making wishes, especially making impulsive wishes.
We all loved Half Magic and would recommend the book to our friends. Overall it was a great meeting and a great way to end the year!
Thanks to all the Book Buddies Club members for participating this year!