The Mislaid Magician or Ten Years After

The Mislaid Magician or Ten Years After

by Patricia C. Wrede, Caroline Stevermer

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Ten years have passed since Kate and Cecy married Thomas and James, and England is now being transformed by the first railways. When James is asked to look into the sudden disappearance of a German railway engineer, he and Cecy make a shocking discovery: The railway lines are wreaking havoc with ancient underground magic, which could endanger the very unity of England. Written in letters between Kate and Cecy—and between their husbands—this installment of the cousins' adventures is another satisfying blend of magic, mystery, adventure, humor, and romance.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780152062095
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date: 12/15/2011
Series: Cecelia and Kate Series , #3
Edition description: First Edition
Pages: 338
Sales rank: 612,930
Product dimensions: 4.50(w) x 7.00(h) x 0.81(d)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

PATRICIA C. WREDE has written many novels, including Sorcery and Cecelia or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot and The Grand Tour coauthored with Caroline Stevermer, as well as the four books in her own series, the Enchanted Forest Chronicles. She lives near Minneapolis, Minnesota.

CAROLINE STEVERMER has written several books for adults and one other fantasy novel for young readers, River Rats. Ms. Stevermer also lives in Minneapolis.

Read an Excerpt

The Mislaid Magician or Ten Years After

Being the Private Correspondence Between Two Prominent Families Regarding a Scandal Touching the Highest Levels of Government and the Security of the Realm
By Wrede, Patricia C.

Harcourt Children's Books

Copyright © 2006 Wrede, Patricia C.
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0152055487


~ 24 FEBRUARY 1828
Dearest Kate,
It was splendid to see you and Thomas and your boys again this fortnight past. (And I still think that Baby Laurence is the image of his papa, even if he is still quite bald. In deference to Thomas's feelings, however, I shall not mention the resemblance again until little Laurence is old enough to have grown some hair.) My only regret is that we could not stay longer at Skeynes. You have turned it into such a comfortable home that I do not wonder at your reluctance to go up to London, though I do hope James and I can coax you all to visit Tangleford next summer, so that we may return your hospitality.
Two weeks was hardly enough time to catch up on all your doings of the past few months. I know James was as sorry to leave as I, and as for the children-- well, you saw how Baby Alexander cried when we left, and Diana and the twins all sulked for two days straight. (I had expected it of Diana, who is only four, after all, but I had hoped that at the age of nine, the twins would have grown out of suchtricks. Apparently it takes longer than that.)
Speaking of the twins, I am afraid Arthur has confessed that he and Eleanor sneaked into Thomas's study on the last day of our visit. Eleanor has been suffering from a trifling ailment since we left-- no more than a bad cold, but Arthur was convinced that it must be the result of some dreadful magical protection they had triggered, and so he poured out the whole story to James and me the night after we arrived home. I do not know where he can have come by such a notion, but he was so earnest in his concern that both James and I had difficulty in keeping a sober expression. I promise you that we did so, however, as neither of us wishes to encourage him to undertake any similar adventures in the future. Poking about in a wizard's study is serious business.
The reason I mention it is that Thomas may need to readjust his warding spells. (I am still not entirely sure how Arthur got past them; please do let me know, if you should discover it.) And I wish you would advise me whether Thomas maintains a continuous scrying spell on the gazing ball in his study. Arthur claims to have seen things in it, and if he is neither making up tales nor using an existing spell, I may need to find him a magic tutor who can oversee more advanced work than his present teacher.
James is going up to London to consult with the Duke of Wellington. (I suppose I ought now to say with the prime minister, but I am not yet accustomed to thinking of him so.) Though I am not sure what the duke has in mind this time, I am quite pleased for him by this turn of events. James becomes bored and most unhappy when he does not have enough to do, which is a habit I am sure he picked up on the Peninsula when he was aide-de-camp to Lord Wellington. And whatever the duke needs, I doubt it will be boring!
At first, I had hoped to go to London along with James, but both Baby Alexander and Diana show signs of coming down with Eleanor's cold, and I really cannot leave Nurse to manage them all alone, most especially if Arthur is going to remain in good health. For he is sure to get into some scrape while her back is turned, and she has a decided partiality for him that sometimes persuades her to be less firm with him than she ought.
Indeed, I am feeling nearly as sulky as the children, for I had been looking forward to seeing Aunt Elizabeth and Mr. Wrexton again. What with Mr. Wrexton's work at the Royal College of Wizards, they are so firmly settled in London now that it is nearly impossible to induce them to visit outside the city. (I cannot bring myself to call Mr. Wrexton "Uncle Michael," though he and Aunt Elizabeth have been married these ten years. I suppose I have never quite got out of the habit of thinking of him as my magic tutor.) I especially wanted Mr. Wrexton's opinion of the discursive-chain cantrips Thomas and I had that disagreement about.
I had also hoped to order a few gowns in advance of the Season, and to review the redecorating of our town house (for you know that now the duke is become prime minister, we shall have all kinds of distinguished persons visiting, so it is most important that everything be properly done).
Now it must all be left to the last minute, for James is quite hopeless at such things. I daresay he would not notice even if the drapers put crimson drapes in the blue salon. It is most provoking, and of course I cannot complain of it to James. So I write to you instead.

~ 25 FEBRUARY 1828
My dear Thomas,
The eldest of my young hellions has confessed to sneaking into your study near the end of our visit. The offense has already met with suitable punishment, but I trust you will let me know of any damage or disruption that he has not seen fit to mention. He has not provided any reason for the excursion other than a desire "to see a real wizard's study." Sometimes I think he takes after my dear Cecelia a little too much.
I am off to London as soon as may be. Wellington's summons was waiting for me when we arrived home. I am not yet entirely sure what the business is about, which will tell you a good deal right there. Unless he has good reason, Old Hookey has always been clear about his orders; I infer that the matter is serious. I need not tell you to be discreet.
Cecelia stays here with the children. I shall write when I know more, and tell you what I can.
James Copyright 2006 by Patricia C. Wrede and Caroline Stevermer
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Excerpted from The Mislaid Magician or Ten Years After by Wrede, Patricia C. Copyright © 2006 by Wrede, Patricia C.. Excerpted by permission.
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The Mislaid Magician or Ten Years After 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 24 reviews.
the1butterfly on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I admit that I had a lot more trouble getting into this one than the previous two (and sticking with it). It was an interesting story, and the go-between with the sisters was there, but I just had trouble connecting. Maybe it was that the sisters were more active/important or something in the others or the plot was more to my taste, but this one just didn't charm me the way the first two had.
emperatrix on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
While not as enjoyable as Sorcery & Cecilia, I felt that The Mislaid Magician was a lot more engaging than The Grand Tour. This novel returns to the epistolary form, recounting the adventures of Cecilia and James, and Kate and Thomas as they become entangled in a mystery that has the power alter the fate of England. Where The Grand Tour dragged, the alternating journal entries becoming somewhat convoluted, The Mislaid Magician resumed the easy, fast pace of the original.
Pagemistress on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Wrede and Stevermer's third Kate and Cecy book picks up, as the title implies, ten years after the end of The Grand Tour. Now established in pleasant (though not uneventful) domesticity, they still manage to become embroiled in magical mayhem and mysteries involving disappearing wizards, kidnapped children, and the potent clash of magic and machines. This third outing is not quite as effervescent as the previous two, and the addition of two more points of view seems to add to the length rather than the substance more often than not, but The Mislaid Magician is still well worth the read, especially for those who have had the good fortune to meet Kate, Cecy, and their companions in previous adventures.
jjmcgaffey on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Not bad, not wonderful. The gimmick works a lot better here than it did in The Grand Tour - actually, a bit better than it did in Sorcery & Cecelia, even. Overlapping messages, two sets of voices (and it was nice to hear Thomas and James speak for themselves), and important information being passed in the letters. Now, the story being told wasn't much, and events depended far too strongly on coincidence, so overall the story was only moderately enjoyable. The whole thing with the ley lines and the trains is very contrived - if it were as important as it's portrayed, it should have been noticed sooner, and if it were minor enough to be overlooked it shouldn't have been such a crisis. Again, I enjoyed the domestic disasters rather more than the whole Plot storyline - though the 'domestic' disasters got to be rather major events in themselves. As I said, not bad but not wonderful. I'll probably reread as part of the series, I have no particular desire to reread the book for itself.
rocalisa on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Mislaid Magician or Ten Years After - Patricia C. Wrede and Caroline StevemerKate and Cecy, Book 3; YA Fantasty; 7/10Another light, fun read. I still think the first of these "books in letters", The Enchanted Chocolate Pot, was the best, but this was very enjoyable. What I found most interesting was the characters' reactions to the advent of the steam train. Trains being something that are so part of the landscape (especially if you have a four year old son and constantly need to call out, "Look Marcus, a train!") I found the reaction of them as a fad that wasn't going to catch on to be amusing. While not the strongest of stories, it was a lovely read and it was nice to see Kate and Cecy coping with being parents.
Nikkles on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Another great book by Patricia Wrede. A must for all lovers of correspondence and fun fantasy novels.
SunnySD on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Kate and Cecy may be ten years older and several children richer, but their adventures certainly don't suffer for it. When the new Prime Minister requests that James look into a the circumstances surrounding the disappearance of a magician/surveyor for the newly constructed railway, he and Cecy pack the kids off to Kate and Thomas, and head north. Between the escapades of the combined brood Kate's coping with, the surprise arrival of her sister Georgy, who is suspiciously mum on the circumstances surrounding and proposed length of her stay, and the discovery that the missing magician has been -- no, I'm not going to spoil the discovery.Suffice it to say that this is a thoroughly satisfactory follow up to the Sorcery and Cecelia, and completely makes up for the somewhat disappointing Grand Tour.
ca.bookwyrm on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is the third in the series of "letter game" books written by the two authors. (The basic idea is that each writer has a character, and the book plot progresses in a series of letters that the authors write to each other in character. The result is a book with two different voices told in a very amusing fashion.) The first book is Sorcery and Cecelia, or the Enchanted Chocolate Pot.This book isn't quite as good as the first one, which had the element of novelty and budding romance to make it all the more enjoyable. However, it is quite fun, and I enjoy it better than the second book. (In book 2, the characters are traveling together and instead of letters they write journal entries. I prefer having them write letters. The plot is equally enjoyable in each of the books.)There isn't much that I can say about this book without ruining the plot of the first two for everyone, but I can say that the series is set in an alternate Regency England, where magic is an acceptable vocation. The two main characters are young ladies of quality, and while the books may be billed as young adult fiction, they have a freshness that adults will be able to enjoy just as much as teens. I really enjoy the series, and would love to see it continue.
amberwitch on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
In this fantasy of manners set in regency England, a sequel to Sorcery and Cecelia and The Grand Tour, a Preussian magician surveyer of railroads has disappeared, and foul play is suspected.The story is told through a series of letters between cousins Kate and Cecy, and their husbands Thomas and James. James and Cecy are hunting all over the English country side for the missing magician, while trying to discover the connection between the new railways and ley lines. Their children are staying with Kate and Thomas who have their fair share of magical lurkers, unexpected events and houseguests to handle while keeping the combined brood safe.The story takes place ten years after The Grand Tour, the shared honeymoon of the two couples, and in the interim Kate and Cecy has grown up and have had children en masse.The epistolary style works better in this story than in The Grand Tour, especially since there is a reason for the use of letters.The story is interesting and wellpaced, although slightly unlikely at times. The amount of coincidences carrying it forward is staggering, and the way several storylines are tied up nicely in the end by the use of the same henchman in two unrelated schemes contrieved.
francescadefreitas on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
While not as splendid as the first book, it is nice to return to the letters of Kate and Cecy, and this time, the lads get voices as well. Some amusement is to be had in the differing stories told by the husbands and wives. The mystery of the missing engineer was engaging, and the system of magic is very interesting indeed. The train's pull on the ley lines is excellent.The mystery of the silent girl is much more obvious, and the threads tying the two stories together were very weak.
icedtea on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I liked this more than the second book, The Grand Tour, but not as much as the first - Sorcery and Cecelia. This time we get added correspondence between James and Thomas, and a return to letters between the cousins.Nitpick: We never did find out what the story with the goat was...
readinggeek451 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Good, although it starts off kind of slowly. It's good to see Kate and Cecy, Thomas and James, again, not to mention making the acquaintance of their kids.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm about halfway through and this book is trying it's best to make me hate characters I've adored for years. In the first two books our main characters were firey and fun, and our male leads were interesting and preciously besotted with the ladies. In this book all four are arrogant and tiresome. People who I would hate to spend any time around. It's probably accurate to their stations in the time period, but honestly I'd much rather have less accuracy and have my beloved characters back instead
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A fun read. Lots of depth to the plot and the characters. A great story for expanding your vocabulary, too. I recommend it to anyone studying for the SAT or other similar standardized tests.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've enjoyed all 3 books. This one is a nice turn on the first. A peek into the characters 10 yrs later, and Cece the adventurer, with Kate at home.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
CathyWV More than 1 year ago
Strongly recommend - good sense of character and humor, as well as a good mystery!
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Guest More than 1 year ago
I remember when I first read Sorcery and Cecelia, or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot. When opening it, I groaned 'I judged the book by its cover--took a chance, and bought it without flipping through'. From my experience, books with letters were dead boring. I was definitely surprised, though, when the 'boring' book became one of my favorites, filled with magic and twisting plots. It was definitely a great book, and I couldn't wait for its sequel--which was just as good 'though a little more mature'. Again, I couldn't wait for The Mislaid Magician, or Ten Years After. While it was, as always, great, it wasn't as good as the first two. There was adventure and secret plots, but a lot of it was about the usuals in a couple's life--children, cleaning, nannies, maids, etc. Not as much excitement. I recommend this book, but to really get these two authors' style, you have to read the other two.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I¿ve read a lot of books that are told in letters or e-mails. Usually it¿s a gimmick, one author playing both sides as it were. But having Ms. Wrede and Ms. Stevermer write the letters for their characters gives this book, as well as the others, a much more authentic feel. Cecelia and Kate have such separate real voices it`s hard to believe that all is really just fiction. It¿s a lot like stumbling across your great-grandmother's letters in the attic - but instead of just having part of the story you get to enjoy it all.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The Third book of Kate And Cecelia's Legacy provided the same amount of humor and adventure as the first two, but not alot of romance. Yet, it wasn't as satisfying as the first book. It didn't keep me up all night reading even though it does have a wonderful plot. Letters from James and Thomas gave some dept to their characters, but it seems like the delivery of Kate's and Cecelia's characters wasnt' was powerful as the first one.