This is one of the best books I've ever read. I'm serious. Hundreds of books on my shelves, and I usually avoid the children's genre nowadays because I figured I'd read all the ones that weren't cheesy, but...whoah. I am truly blown away. This book has everything: a smart, tough heroine, an amazing hero, humor that had me grinning every few pages, action galore. Derek Landy's writing style is just beautiful, every character was a work of art, the fight scenes were none too far apart but VERY different from one another, and very clearly and tightly written. The plot was incredibly good, the premise of the magic and the world was unique and, well, awesome in pretty much every way. The villain was seriously depraved, supremely powerful and fitted the story perfectly.
I could go on like this all day. Let me sum it up, then: this book is incredible
. I can't see how anyone, either child, teen, or adult, could not love it. It's dropping right onto my "favorites" shelf and sticking there permanently, I recommend it with all my heart. Read it, read it!!