Author(s): Cressida Cowell
The instant New York Times and International Bestseller
In the first book of a new series by the bestselling author of How to Train Your Dragon, the warring worlds of Wizards and Warriors collide in a thrilling and enchanting adventure.
Once there were Wizards, who were Magic, and Warriors, who were not. But Xar, son of the King of Wizards, can't cast a single spell. And Wish, daughter of the Warrior Queen, has a banned magical object of her own. When they collide in the wildwood, on the trail of a deadly witch, it's the start of a grand adventure that just might change the fabric of their worlds.
With Cressida Cowell's trademark wit, and the same stunning combination of action, adventure, heart, humor, and incredible artwork that made How to Train Your Dragon a beloved bestselling franchise, The Wizards of Once will transport and enchant readers.
Packed with Cowell's own quirky illustrations and as imaginative, funny and warm-hearted as the Dragon books. * The Wrexham Leader * Full of quirky illustrations, it is a pacy read. * Cornish Times * The Wizards of Once is... terrific... a rollercoaster of suspense. * The Guardian * The illustrations of Xar, Wish, the magical creatures, notices and maps will be familiar to fans of How to Train Your Dragon but they are darker and have more of a feel of Tinder or A Monster Calls. An enjoyable read for anyone who loves the idea that 'Once there was Magic'. * The School Librarian * If your kids adored How to Train Your Dragon, they'll be thrilled by the new The Wizards of Once. * Family Traveller * A wildly entertaining and funny adventure. It is a visual treat to snuggle up with or read together with an adult. * South Wales Evening Post (Swansea) * This is a spellbinding adventure. It's so brilliantly entertaining, exciting and scary, you'll be desperate to get your hands on the sequel. * The Week Junior * The book bristles with rambunctious energy and humour, and feels as if it has been slapped down on the page with glee and mischief. And its characters are irresistible. * The Glasgow Herald * Funny, thoughtful, lively and suprisingly wise, it is another coup for Cowell. * The Sunday Times Ireland * Packed with Cowell's own quirkly illustrations, and as imaginative, funny and warm-hearted as the Dragon books, The Wizards of Once is a pacy, exciting read that's sure to herald another hit series. * Gainsborough Echo * A treat for old fans and newcomers alike. * S Magazine * Without ever losing the qualities that have made her books so deservedly popular, very gently (and cleverly) Cressida Cowell leads her young readers into something deeper, something richer, something even more magical. In doing so, her contribution to children's literature follows exactly the same path. She is a true hero of current children's fiction. Her books are a gift and children, parents, carers, and teachers should all be deeply grateful for it. * Magic Fiction Since Potter * Fans of How To Train Your Dragon who have been waiting for Cressida Cowell's new series will not be disappointed. Wizards, warriors, magic and two fab new mini heroes. * Weekly Scoop * I really enjoyed this book because there were moments of suspense where you could guess what would happen and 9 times out of 10 be shocked by what happened.It was really fun and a good read, I love how it all intertwines and locks. It is a book you get drawn into and can't put down and I can't wait for the next book in the series to come out because it leaves a real cliff hanger of an ending! An incredible read. 5 out of 5 * Primary Times * Cressida Cowell is a gifted author with a real talent for taking her readers right inside her fantasy worlds. Now we have the start of a great new series, with more to look forward to...The illustrations by the author are an outstanding feature of the book - they really convey the atmosphere and propel the reader into this fantastical world. Totally absorbing. * Parents in Touch * It's so brilliantly entertaining, exciting and scary, you'll be desperate to get your hands on the sequel. * The Week Junior * I loved The Wizards of Once. Of course! The new world Cowell has created is just as vivid...There's plenty of magic in Cowell's wild woods and it rises from the pages fresh and clear and with fizzling energy... And it's funny, as you'd expect. Cheerfully funny with daft jokes and slapstick and sharp dialogue... The underlying theme is one of tolerance of difference. She writes with empathy and encourages it in her readers that way. So much better to let kids come to their own conclusions once you've gently pointed them in the right direction. I think this is one reason why Cowell is so popular - there is a trust between author and reader that both feel and respect. * The Book Bag * bristles with rambunctious energy and humour, and feels as if it has been slapped down on the page with glee and mischief....its characters, Xar the wizard who has no magic, and Wish the warrior princess, who happens to have a magic spoon, are irresistible. * Herald Scotland * An exciting and promising start... A fantastical adventure ensues, filled with mythical beasts, cliff-hangers and an epic struggle between good and evil * The Scotsman * ... it is by turns grim, poignant, philosophical and terrifying, woven through with Cowell's slapstick humour. * The Times Literary Supplement * ... sustain a sense of wonder and mayhem from start to finish. Cowell skillfully mixes adventure with silliness in a satisfying story for younger fantasy fans. * Publishers Weekly * I am pleased to report that The Wizards of Once...is terrific. It introduces us to a new fantasy world, though its roots again lie deep in a familiar mulch of history and legend. Not the Norse myths this time, but a fantasia of ancient Britain, a land of dark, mysterious forests and powerful magic. What follows is a rollercoaster of suspense and surprise...The book has all the familiar Cowell trademarks. The story never flags, even at moments of calm and reflection, and the writing has humour, grit and depth. She provides her own illustrations, and their scratchy style and scribbled annotations strike the right note. It all adds up to a beautifully designed hardback volume. * The Guardian * The detail of Cowell's world is a delight...This one will run and run. * The Observer * Cowell's latest work offers a fully realized fantasy world abounding with witches, sprites, killer plants, and talking ravens. Her scrappy teenage protagonists are wonderfully flawed and almost scarily realistic in their bravery, selfishness, and desire to please their parents yet not surrender their individuality. The omniscient narrator's voice is pitch-perfect, sounding appropriately young without ever talking down to the target audience. Readers will fall in love with the imaginative worldbuilding and humorous dialogue and asides....A delightful magical romp. * Kirkus Reviews * The first volume of a new series by author and illustrator of the How to Train Your Dragon series is an event....Funny, thoughtful and surprisingly wise and lively, this is another coup from Cowell * The Sunday Times * World-conquering * The Guardian *
Cressida Cowell is currently the Waterstones Children's Laureate (2019 - 2021). She is the author and illustrator of the bestselling The Wizards of Once and How to Train Your Dragon books series, and the author of the Emily Brown picture books, illustrated by Neal Layton.
The Wizards of Once series has been translated into 37 languages and has been signed by DreamWorks Animation. How to Train Your Dragon has sold over 8 million books worldwide in 38 languages and is a major DreamWorks Animation film franchise, as well as being made into a TV series on Netflix and CBBC.
Cressida is an ambassador for the National Literacy Trust and the Reading Agency, a Trustee of World Book Day and a founder patron of the Children's Media Foundation. She has won numerous prizes, including the Gold Award in the Nestle Children's Book Prize.