The Magykal Papers



Septimus Heap: The Magykal Papers

Angie Sage

Mark Zug, Illustrator

Katherine Tegan Books, an Imprint HarperCollins Publishers, 2009

The author wrote this book and published it in between Queste and Syren. Ms Sage gives us some insight into the world beyond Septimus. She tells about characters and histories she doesn’t have the space to do in the novels. It is divided into 4 sections:

Papers from the Castle

Under this heading we get a history of the Castle, the Ramblings and among many other papers, a restaurant guide called Egg-On-Toast. This was my favorite – not! Did you know they eat cats in the Castle? Horrible, but true – look at this:

“The Meat Pie & Sausage Cart –
“Specialties: Sausage-of-the-day. (My brave assistant tried one and got a cat’s claw stuck between her teeth.)
“Menu:  Meat pies and sausages.
“We Ate: Sausage-of-the-day. My assistant ate nothing else for the following three days.
“Comments: Disgusting.”  Pg 15


Let’s just move on…

Papers from the Wizard Tower

In this chapter we get a history of the Wizard Tower, learn all about Alther Mella, Marcia Overstand and our hero, Septimus Heap. We also get a peek into Marcia’s and Septimus’ journals. I especially liked the entry from Septimus’ diary about “Creature Spell Level One: House Mouse.” The next mouse I grab I’m going to try the spell this spell on it, even if I don’t have a Cheese Charm:

“Mouse of Mine, Look at Me,
                Mouse of Mine, You Will Be,
                Mouse of Mine for a Year and a Day,
                Mouse of Mine, You Will Not Stray.” Pg 91

Papers from the Palace

In this section we get some writings from Silas and Sarah Heap (boring!!) and some background info of Jenna Heap, the Queen-to-be plus a tidbit from her diary, well, actually a lot of interesting stuff from the princess. There is also a section about the shops of Wizard Way and the Manuscriptorium.  I liked the part that told about Sandra’s Palace of Pets. It was formerly a reptile store but later became a place for fluffy, puffy pets—the kind I would like to hunt!

Pets currently looking for the new person [or cat] in their life:
Brian, Barney, Billy, Brenda, Barry, Boffy and Ben – baby mice, ten days old. [yum!]
Dave, Dinah, Dixie and Dilbert – Guinea pig family who wish to stay together. {double yum!]
Ping-Pong—Exotic gerbil. Temperamental. [Hmmm, maybe not.]
Princess—Small Chinchilla. Fussy about food. “ [Sounds nice and tasty!] pg 130

Papers from Around the Castle

This section has papers from Lucy Gringe and background information about her parents. There is a really large bit about Stanley’s Message Rat Service. He is looking for help but since the “Rat Stranglers” drove them out a year or so before there are no more rats in the Castle. Stanley has hope and it looks like I’m going to set up housekeeping right outside the door and interview any new applicants.

So this book was pretty good on a background and information level but I won’t be reading it again. No story line, no drama, no excitement!

Rating: 3 paws, but it will stay on our shelves because it goes with the rest of the Septimus books.

toby pawtoby pawtoby paw Reviewer: toby headshot2 


Courtesy Goodreads:
Since illustrations are a really big part of this book, I give you a bio on the illustrator:
Mark Zug Mark Zug is an illustrator of books, starting with his 1993 project “I, Robot: The Illustrated Screenplay” by Harlan Ellison, and going on to illustrate books by Tanith Lee, Diana Wynne Jones, Paul Haven, the young prodigy Nancy Yi Fan, Edgar Rice Burroughs’ classic Barsoom novelettes – all the while building a reputation for Golden-Age-inspired paintings in the world of fantasy games such as Magic the Gathering. Equally at home in both pencil and oil paint, he’s most recently been the exclusive illustrator for the best-selling “Septimus Heap” series of novels by Angie Sage.

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