Fantasy Book Review: Cryptozoology for Beginners

Cryptozoology for Beginners by Matt Harry

Synopsis:
Only six weeks after a handful of teenage sorcerers defeated a team of anti-magic mercenaries called the Euclideans, Trish, Owen, and Perry are called back into action when they discover that the world’s cryptids (aka magical creatures) are disappearing. They’re partnered with brusque team leader Jacinda Greyeyes and their former nemesis Bryan Ferretti in a mission to travel all over North America, collecting famous cryptids like the jackalope, the chupacabra, and the altamaha-ha.

But when another team of teenage sorcerers suddenly vanishes, the spell casters set out for Germany, Egypt, and the Seychelles to uncover why the Euclideans have been abducting and experimenting on magical creatures like the unicorn and the sphinx. The secrets they uncover threaten to divide them, and reveal a truth that will permanently upend the way the world sees sorcery.

Review:
Cryptozoology for Beginners is the direct sequel to Sorcery for Beginners. The novels are written as a story, but with fun facts that make it feel like a guide as well. The young teens are novices in magic when they learn it’s up to them to help protect Earth’s mythological creatures. There are a lot of diverse creatures highlighted that make this book a lot of fun. Trish, Owen, and Perry gain a couple more teammates as they are tasked with collecting cryptids. But it seems like the Euclideans are always right behind them. The characters have grown, despite the annoying and bullying Bryan. I was a bit confused on why there’s so much focus on the kids coupling up in what seems like a Middle Grade fantasy series. The book isn’t written with a young adult feel, despite YA romance (both straight and gay), so I was put off a bit. But the story is fast-paced and full of adventure and suspense. There are a couple of big surprises along the way that add to the dramatic aspect. And a climactic finale leads to an ending that doesn’t disappoint.

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