#44 The Wizards of Once: Knock Three Times by Cressida Cowell

Wish and Xar are outlaws on the run, hunted by Warriors, Wizards and worst of all by WITCHES …

Can they find the ingredients for the spell to get rid of Witches before the Kingwitch gets his talons on the Magic-that-Works-on-Iron?

Their next Quest is the most terrifying and treacherous of all … and someone is going to betray them. Are you ready to KNOCK THREE TIMES?

Paperback | 384 pages.

Published: Hodder Children’s Books (14 May 2020

Read: 3rd June, 2020.

Age Range (if Applicable): 9-11 years.

I read this straight off the back of book two because I just couldn’t contain my excitement a moment longer. I wonder if Wish and Xar will ever escape the trouble that’s chasing them.

It’s was very easy to read this book and it’s been a very easy series to get into and to understand.

I see some positive changes in Xar here – hallelujah. He was so much more appealing in this book and I started to enjoy his character a lot more. The trouble that happened at the end of Twice Magic has followed Xar and Wish into this third instalment and I felt they both took a more mature outlook of what was happening around them and the importance of the quest they were still on.

It was fun to finally be able to meet Caliburn’s sister and that little interlude between all the running away from trouble was a calming effect for the book’s plotline. I thought that Wish had grown a little more as a person and was more concerned and concentrated on the bigger picture they were after, rather than getting wrapped up in the little things.

Bodkin got his moment and it was a very good moment. I enjoyed the shift of his character and the moment when he realised he was worth something. It was very warming to read.

This was very easy to visualise. Between the words, my imagination and Cowell’s illustrations, a very crisp and clear picture was created.

I thought this book was better than Twice Magic, at least, I felt I was more involved in the progression of this book than I was with the one before it. I got the character growth that I’d been wanting and there were many unexpected moments that had me smiling or filled me with questions. The narrative has now split into two halves. On the one side you have the adventure of Xar, Wish and Bodkin and on the other you have the chase of Xar’s Dad and Wish’s Mum who are both convinced that their children are misbehaving, bringing shame on the family and need to be locked up. All the while both parents are struggling with being close to each other since it was revealed in book 2 that they used to be in love.

I enjoyed this more than the second book. From reading through a lot of reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, my opinion seems to be the unpopular one, with people preferring book 2 over book 3, but there we go. I preferred book 3 and I preferred the character growth and the plot in book 3. I was just more captured by the story and it held my attention for longer. Also, I didn’t find Xar irritating in this book, which is a great improvement!

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