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An alternate cover edition exists here. Nicholas Flamel was born in Paris on 28 September 1330. Nearly seven hundred years later, he is acknowledged as the greatest Alchemyst of his day. It is said that he discovered the secret of eternal life. The records show that he died in 1418. But his tomb is empty and Nicholas Flamel lives. The secret of eternal life is hidden within An alternate cover edition exists here. Nicholas Flamel was born in Paris on 28 September 1330. Nearly seven hundred years later, he is acknowledged as the greatest Alchemyst of his day. It is said that he discovered the secret of eternal life. The records show that he died in 1418. But his tomb is empty and Nicholas Flamel lives. The secret of eternal life is hidden within the book he protects—the Book of Abraham the Mage. It's the most powerful book that has ever existed. In the wrong hands, it will destroy the world. And that's exactly what Dr. John Dee plans to do when he steals it. Humankind won't know what's happening until it's too late. And if the prophecy is right, Sophie and Josh Newman are the only ones with the power to save the world as we know it. Sometimes legends are true. And Sophie and Josh Newman are about to find themselves in the middle of the greatest legend of all time.


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An alternate cover edition exists here. Nicholas Flamel was born in Paris on 28 September 1330. Nearly seven hundred years later, he is acknowledged as the greatest Alchemyst of his day. It is said that he discovered the secret of eternal life. The records show that he died in 1418. But his tomb is empty and Nicholas Flamel lives. The secret of eternal life is hidden within An alternate cover edition exists here. Nicholas Flamel was born in Paris on 28 September 1330. Nearly seven hundred years later, he is acknowledged as the greatest Alchemyst of his day. It is said that he discovered the secret of eternal life. The records show that he died in 1418. But his tomb is empty and Nicholas Flamel lives. The secret of eternal life is hidden within the book he protects—the Book of Abraham the Mage. It's the most powerful book that has ever existed. In the wrong hands, it will destroy the world. And that's exactly what Dr. John Dee plans to do when he steals it. Humankind won't know what's happening until it's too late. And if the prophecy is right, Sophie and Josh Newman are the only ones with the power to save the world as we know it. Sometimes legends are true. And Sophie and Josh Newman are about to find themselves in the middle of the greatest legend of all time.

30 review for The Alchemyst

  1. 5 out of 5

    dyanne

    Dear Josh, let me start out with you. You could've been a really great kid but apparently, the author just couldn't make up his mind about you. One minute you're an ordinary kid who likes superheroes and doesn't do well in school and then you become this person who has a super computer and uber-nerdtastic knowledge? Whoa, big difference. I feel sorry for you. I really do. I get jealousy. I get envy. What I don't get is how you and Sophie never fight. Is it just that in those two days that I was e Dear Josh, let me start out with you. You could've been a really great kid but apparently, the author just couldn't make up his mind about you. One minute you're an ordinary kid who likes superheroes and doesn't do well in school and then you become this person who has a super computer and uber-nerdtastic knowledge? Whoa, big difference. I feel sorry for you. I really do. I get jealousy. I get envy. What I don't get is how you and Sophie never fight. Is it just that in those two days that I was extracted from my world and put into yours, siblings and constant fighting and all the things that go with "brother and sister" was recreated into this perfect world where it's mushy-gushy unconditional brotherly love and nothing else? Sincerely, Annoyed Dear Sophie, You're really annoying. I would like you if you stopped being you. You're quite the hopeless case. Sincerely, The Truth Dear Nicholas, You can go die in a hole and then come back to life and dissolve slowly in a pot of acid and then come back to life again to be slowly and maliciously tortured for eternity You should've never existed in the first place. Sincerely, Rightfully Angry Dear Pernelle, Why did you marry Nicholas? Sincerely, Confused Dear Scatty, You are pretty awesome. Still, you're 1,000 years old and still have the maturity level of a teenager. And I don't really get why you hang out with Nicholas. Sincerely, You Could Do Better Dear Dora, You remind me of my own grandmother. Sincerely, Impressed Dear Hekete, why the heck did you say yes to Nicholas and "awake" Sophie? I mean, where is your common sense? Don't you have any wisdom? Sincerely, Frustrated Dear John, You're supposed to be dead. Live with it. Sincerely, We're better off without you Dear Crow Goddess, you're so unimportant I don't remember your actually name. Crows are cool so I don't think you should ruin them for me. It's really selfish of the author to have him ruin crows. Sincerely, I know you're not to blame Dear Bastet, I liked you better as the Egyptian goddess. Sincerely, Go back where you belong. Dear crows, goddesses don't exist. Get that through your bird brain and live life. Sincerely, myths will be myths Dear cats, I love you guys. You're great. Keep doing you, sweetie. xoxo <3 Sincerely, Proud mom Dear rats, The cats will eat you. Sincerely, Just saying

  2. 5 out of 5

    Stephen

    2.0 stars. I did NOT like this book. The plot was derivative, the writing was passable AT BEST and the two teenage main characters annoyed me to the point of causing actual hair loss. However, the book avoided the 1 star noose based solely on some crafty ideas and oh so unused potential that I will explore once I briefly explain the plot...which should not take long as we have all seen this tired old movie before. BRIEF TIRED OLD PLOT SUMMARY: Sophia and Josh (two VERYannoying kids) work 2.0 stars. I did NOT like this book. The plot was derivative, the writing was passable AT BEST and the two teenage main characters annoyed me to the point of causing actual hair loss. However, the book avoided the 1 star noose based solely on some crafty ideas and oh so unused potential that I will explore once I briefly explain the plot...which should not take long as we have all seen this tired old movie before. BRIEF TIRED OLD PLOT SUMMARY: Sophia and Josh (two VERYannoying kids) work at a book store for a mysterious guy named Nick. Based on the title of the novel, I don't think I'm giving up state secrets by telling you that old Nicky is really the immortal Alchemyst Nicholas Flamel (NOTE TO AUTHOR: spelling Alchemyst with a "y" was really clever and not at all gimmicky or ham-handed). Well, Nick (or should I be all hipster and call him Nyck) has a very important book called the Codex that he has been safeguarding for many centuries until a bad guy, with a bunch of otherworldly baddies find Nick and steal the Codex from him. From there begins your oh my God not again, please not again, i have read this before a hundred times and don’t want to see it again or i may do something terrible to myself "typical" plot of: (a) explain the kindly gentlemen is really an immortal alchemist, (b) provide info dump on background of world, (c) kids discover their special (but special don't cure annoying laddies), (d) kids must find main bad guy or else will die, (e) fight some monsters, (f) kids seem to be wickedly smart and yet at times say some of the DUMBEST things imaginable (f) group gets split up, (g) think hope is lost, (h) oh not quite yet, we have ONE chance, (i) more powerful monsters show up (j) powerful good guy protectors show up and join the quest, and finally (k) a big, special effects laden climax and a nice tidy ending with the plot wrapped up but with the basis for the next story introduced ...HUH?...THE BOOK JUST STOPS OUT OF THE BLUE... ? SO WHY 2 STARS? Despite my general annoyance with the plot and the characters, I ended up deciding to give the book 2 stars rather than 1 because I REALLY LOVED THE WORLDBUILDING CONCEPT behind the book. What I mean is that the world created by Michael Scott was filled with some serious mega potential and felt unique and daisy fresh, despite his best efforts to muck it up. Now before anyone goes all Charlie Sheen on me screaming that Scott simply borrowed pieces of dozens, if not hundreds, of different stories and mashed them together, let me say that I would NOT disagree with that assessment at all. Calm down and take a valium. My point is that by bringing together so many different threads and assembling them as part of a unified world view, the end result was something that began to feel fresh and if, not unique, at least not old and worn. It was that whole sum greater than parts thing. For Example....minor spoiler about the world building aspects to follow... (view spoiler)[I loved the idea of a world existing before the dawn of human history. I also loved the concept of the Lovecraftian “Elder Gods” and the timing of their retrenchment at the beginning of the Iron Age. I loved the idea that all mythical and supernatural creatures of legend are descended from this “elder race” and that their histories can all be traced back to a common origin.  I liked that there are good and bad “elder gods” as that allows powerful alliances to be formed in later books. Finally, I like the concept of the “immortality” of humans like Flamel allowing historical figures from the past to be able to play a part in later books (as I believe Machiavelli does in the next volume). (hide spoiler)] For me, all of the above world building aspects give Scott a treasure trove of material to draw from in order to be able to create a story that could be truly funtastical . However, nothing will save the series if the negatives outlined above are not addressed in later books. I just hope that Scott can do a better job of minimizing the short comings of this story and expanding on the clever world he has envisioned. For what it's worth, I also hope that Chuck Norris kicks the smarmy off Justin Bieber's face, but that is another conversation.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Bonnie

    Okay. I liked this book a lot more than most people who have written reviews. I feel that it's because I didn't go into it with many preconceived notions. I had hoped it would be related to Harry Potter, but when I realized it wasn't I moved on. I also didn't read the book because I was a huge fan of the real Flamel. If you read it for either of those reasons, you will most likely be disapointed. 15 year-old twins Sophie and Josh have gotten summer jobs in San Franciso. Josh works at a bookstore, Okay. I liked this book a lot more than most people who have written reviews. I feel that it's because I didn't go into it with many preconceived notions. I had hoped it would be related to Harry Potter, but when I realized it wasn't I moved on. I also didn't read the book because I was a huge fan of the real Flamel. If you read it for either of those reasons, you will most likely be disapointed. 15 year-old twins Sophie and Josh have gotten summer jobs in San Franciso. Josh works at a bookstore, and Sophie works across the street. One day, a group of evil men come to attack Josh's boss, and it ends up that they are headed by the evil John Dee, Elizabeth I's spy, and that Josh's boss is none other than the immortal Nicholas Flamel. Before flattening the bookstore completely, John Dee and his henchmen steal a very old book, except for the last 2 pages, which Josh has a tight hold on. It ends up that the book is the secret to Nicholas Flamel's long LONG life, and that the last 2 pages are key, so now Josh's life is in danger, and Nicholas Flamel is aging before his eyes. Josh, Sophie, and Flamel flee the city, with Dee in pursuit, but they soon learn that there is more to the 2 of them, Josh and Sophie, than they have ever realized, that they are special, and perhaps Flamel is not being completely honest about his reasons for wanting them to accompany him on his journey. I felt a little confused why Nicholas Flamel couldn't make another stone, or whatever, to extend his life without the book that Dee took. You would think that he would have the method down pat during the last 600-so years. The book does something different with magic that I'd never read before, which is link it to the 5 senses. According to the book, the reason that the average person cannot do magic is because their senses are dulled, and when the magic starts happening, there are an amazing number of smells described. I did think the book did something dangerous, because it tied itself way too much to the present: ipod, wikipedia, Shrek, the new Spiderman. All of that is really going to date it in time. It did make good historical references, linking the story to events that happened in the past, like the potato famine, and the great fire in London. That somehow made the events in the story more believable and immediate. I also learned from the book, because the characters in it are ones I never have heard of before, like the Morrigan. It was cool that he worked, somewhat, with characters who already exist. I bet it would be easier to make them all up, but it was cool to see how they would all interact if they were together. Like Into the Woods, which I just reviewed, I think this book would make a really excellent movie, and in fact, some of the scenes would play out better in a movie than they did in the book. I would definitely see it. There is a sequel, which is coming out soon, and I'm going to read it. The ending leaves you with a cliffhanger, so I'm glad I didn't read it when there was a long wait 'til the next book.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Ahmad Sharabiani

    The Alchemyst (The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel #1), Michael Scott The Alchemyst is the first installment in the six volume fantasy novel series, The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel. It was written by Irish author Michael Scott and published in May 2007. Sophie and Josh Newman are 15-year-old twins who are working at their summer jobs in The Coffee Cup in San Francisco (Sophie works at The Coffee Cup, Josh works at the bookstore on the other side of the street) when a mysterious The Alchemyst (The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel #1), Michael Scott The Alchemyst is the first installment in the six volume fantasy novel series, The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel. It was written by Irish author Michael Scott and published in May 2007. Sophie and Josh Newman are 15-year-old twins who are working at their summer jobs in The Coffee Cup in San Francisco (Sophie works at The Coffee Cup, Josh works at the bookstore on the other side of the street) when a mysterious man, John Dee, comes into the bookstore for a book, the Codex – or Book of Abraham the Mage. Josh witnesses both Nick and Perry using magic. He discovers that Nick is not an ordinary bookseller, but is the medieval and the legendary alchemist, Nicholas Flamel, being kept alive by making the elixir of life (a secret from the Codex) for him and his wife, Perenelle. Dee also uses magic and takes the Codex by force while Josh is holding it – resulting in two pages being left behind; "The Final Summoning" pages that Dee needs to raise the Dark Elders, the beings whom Dee serves, and who have kept him immortal for several hundred years. Both Flamels need the Codex to make the elixir of life, or they will age rapidly and die within a month. Also, if they do not retrieve the Codex, Dee will summon the Dark Elders to destroy the world and return to an age in which humans are but slaves and food. ... تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز دهم ماه دسامبر سال 2011 میلادی عنوان: کیمیاگر - ششگانه اسرار نیکولاس فلامل جاودان - کتاب اول؛ نویسنده: مایکل اسکات؛ ترجمه پونه اشجع؛ تهران انتشارات بهنام‏‫، 1389؛ در 383ص؛ شابک 9789645668684؛ چاپ دوم 1392؛ چاپ سوم 1394؛ چاپ چهارم 1396؛ موضوع: داستانهای نویسندگان ایرلندی - سده 21م شخصیت نخست کتاب «کیمیاگر»، شخصی به نام «نیکولاس فلامل» است. بر اساس آنچه در تاریخ آمده، «فلامل» در سال 1330میلادی در پاریس به دنیا آمد، و سالها به عنوان کاتب و کتابفروش، در آن شهر زندگی کرد. اما با خرید کتابی قدیمی به نام: «کتاب آبراهام دانشمند» مسیر زندگیش برای همیشه تغییر کرد. «نیکولاس» و همسرش «پرنل»، بیست سال تمام به امید یافتن کسیکه بتواند زبان مرموز کتاب را برایشان ترجمه کند، سرتاسر اروپا را زیر پا گذاشتند. هیچکس نمیداند در آن سفر طولانی چه بر آنها گذاشت، اما سرانجام با ثروتی هنگفت به پاریس بازگشتند؛ و قسمت اعظمی از ثروتشان را صرف کارهای خیریه ای مثل ساخت بیمارستان، کلیسا و یتیم خانه کردند. «نیکولاس» و «پرنل» هیچگاه راه به دست آوردن چنان ثروتی را بازگو نکردند؛ همین امر باعث قوت گرفتن شایعاتی شد؛ از جمله اینکه کیمیاگر راز ساخت سنگ جادو و تبدیل مس به طلا و همچنین رمز جاودانگی را کشف کرده است؛ این شایعات هرگز از طرف آن دو تایید و یا تکذیب نشد. در مورد سال مرگ «پرنل» اختلاف نظر وجود دارد، اما آنچه به یقین میتوان گفت این است که «پرنل» زودتر از «نیکولاس» از دنیا رفت؛ بر اساس آنچه در تاریخ آمده است، «فلامل» در سال 1418میلادی درگذشت؛ پس از مرگ کیمیاگر، خریداران خانه اش در جستجوی گنجی مدفون، ساختمان را زیر و رو کردند، اما چیزی نیافتند؛ پس از این رویداد جویندگان گنج دست به نبش قبر «نیکولاس» و «پرنل» زدند، و در کمال شگفتی متوجه شدند، که تابوت هر دو خالی است؛ در نظر مردم تنها دو توجیه برای این اتفاق وجود داشت: نخست اینکه جسد هر دو در آرامگاهی مخفی دفن شده باشد، و دیگر اینکه هیچ کدام نمرده باشند؛ نقل نمونه متن: «من افسانه هستم! دست مرگ هرگز مرا نخواهد ربود. بیماری در من اثر نخواهد کرد. در چهره‌ ام بنگر، حدس زدن سنم کاری بس دشوار است، این در حالی است که در سال 1330میلادی، بیش از ششصد و هفتاد سال پیش به دنیا آمده‌ ام. در گذر سال‌ها، حرفه‌ های مختلف داشته‌ ام: پزشک، آشپز، کتاب‌فروش، سرباز، آموزگار زبان و شیمی، هم دزد و هم مأمور قانون، اما پیش از همه‌ ی این‌ها کیمیاگر بوده‌ ام: نخستین کیمیاگر. از من به عنوان برترین کیمیاگر تاریخ یاد میشد. پادشاهان، شاهزاده ها، امپراطورها و حتی شخص پاپ، همه و همه به دنبال من بودند. من توانایی تبدیل فلزات بی ارزش به طلا را داشتم؛ میتوانستم سنگهای معمولی را به جواهرات گرانبها تبدیل کنم؛ اما از همه ی اینها مهمتر، از دل کتاب جادوی کهن، راز زندگی جاودان را کشف کردم. اکنون همسرم، پرنل، و کتاب ربوده شده اند. بدون وجود کتاب، من و او پیر خواهیم شد. به تدریج تحلیل میرویم و سرانجام وقتی که ماه کامل شود، خواهیم مرد. با مرگ ما، اهریمنی که سالهای سال در برابرش جنگیده ایم، سرانجام به پیروزی خواهد رسید. نسل باستان، بار دیگر زمین را تحت سلطه ی خود خواهد گرفت، و انسانیت را از چهره ی زمین خواهد زدود. اما من به سادگی تسلیم نخواهم شد. چرا که من نیکولاس فلامل جاودانم. پنج شنبه، 31 می، سانفرانسیسکو، برگرفته از دفتر خاطرات نیکولاس فلامل کیمیاگر»؛ پایان نقل از متن تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 22/03/1399هجری خورشیدی ا. شربیانی

  5. 4 out of 5

    Kris

    This book was awful. So awful, it warrants me actually putting in a review. First of all, there isn't enough Nicholas Flamel. There is far too much of the twins that kind of become Nic's apprentices, and attatches way too much teenage exposition to them. And we don't need the two of them mentioning that their parents are archaeologists every other page. We got it the first time. Move on. And even if their parents are archaeologists, they're not necessarily going to know as much about it as they s This book was awful. So awful, it warrants me actually putting in a review. First of all, there isn't enough Nicholas Flamel. There is far too much of the twins that kind of become Nic's apprentices, and attatches way too much teenage exposition to them. And we don't need the two of them mentioning that their parents are archaeologists every other page. We got it the first time. Move on. And even if their parents are archaeologists, they're not necessarily going to know as much about it as they seem too. When you're 15, you try to stay away from your parents as much as possible. And there seriously didn't need to be as much name dropping around the character of Josh (I swear to God, whenever the story was from his perspective, there was always a name dropped of a movie or a video game, and there was always mention of his laptop, his cell phone, and that he had been on the football team). And the repetition of the name dropping, or them mentioning their parent's profession, was enough to make you put a gun barrel in your mouth. It felt way too forced. Too much like he was trying to be all, "Look!! I'm one of you!!" He turned a potentially kick-ass 2 1/2 thousand year old vampire into a lame teenager. Not a cool one, something you might have imagined Bill and Charlie Weasly being. No, she was lame ... and just happened to be able to kick ass ... cuz she was a vampire. And some of the other gods could've been completely awesome (like Morrígan) ... but they came off kind of lame, without any real power, and seemingly easily manipulated. Scott really could've done something awesome with this, if he had decided to do a kick ass Sword & Sorcery story (a la "Highlander: The Series"). Instead, it felt more like a teenager's attempt at High Fantasy (::cough::Eldest (Inheritance, Book 2)::cough::), and not a very good one at that. And seriously, mentioning LotR at the beginning of your book, does not a High Fantasy make. Nor does having something that's the equivalent of the Force, a good fantasy make.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Tina ➹ the girl who lives in Fandoms

    Complete 5 Golden Stars RTC after next re-read (probably in 2020) kind of a general review about the whole series I guess: for the start of a new series, this book was absolutely interesting. Exciting, mysterious plot, making questions in our minds along with protagonists, lovable characters, Magic (with a such a unique system, I actually didn't know I needed to read this before seeing it in this series) in our world. Now I'm thinking, this series, kind of reminded me of "the Librarians" tv show (or Complete 5 Golden Stars RTC after next re-read (probably in 2020) kind of a general review about the whole series I guess: for the start of a new series, this book was absolutely interesting. Exciting, mysterious plot, making questions in our minds along with protagonists, lovable characters, Magic (with a such a unique system, I actually didn't know I needed to read this before seeing it in this series) in our world. Now I'm thinking, this series, kind of reminded me of "the Librarians" tv show (or that show reminded me of this series, if I want to say it chronologically creation of both & me meeting them. but as I was writing it (& I recently finished binge watching the show) the idea just strike me.) because we see many ancient famous characters during this series (duh, the bold example is Nicholas Flamel himself) mythological characters or historical real people. it was recommended years ago by the nice librarian who knew me well & I'm so glad he did that. ✦ a mixture of Greek, Norse & Egyptian myths plus some real historical characters, & magic in our modern world, mysteries & exciting chasing & escaping & adventures & travels is the inseparable part of this plot. I love Josh (why are you even surprised? I always fall for the main male character XD) & his character development through this series was awesome, & one of a kind! I mostly liked the villains in this book too, they were interesting, cool & charismatic! even sometimes I was wondering maybe we are (with the protagonists) at the wrong side of the story (you know, I wondered maybe the dark side is not actually the bad ones?) & I never asked this question much. (only here & in Pendragon series) a confusing strong plot with mysteries & thrills, you don't know where is up or down after drowning in this series! such a must read for a mythology lover, regardless of the age. It categorized as a Middle Grade (probably because main characters' age) but it's mature, serious & captivating, adventurous & interesting, something like Percy Jackson, & even if it is, it's a one of the best. I read it in my late teen years & loved it. also interesting choices for the titles which made me think who'd been referring to. my 4th series in top fav series. it's worth reading! definitely! also gorgeous covers!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Mike (the Paladin)

    I'll try to be fair here, this is a "YA" book and it comes in telling us it's going to "play" with historical and mythological figures....and play it does. I found the book annoying and wonder at the damage we're doing to our "youths" and their knowledge of mythology, what we can learn from mythology, from the archetypal characters, thoughts, and ideas they contain. Okay, part of rant over. There are different types of YA books. Some are more yA while others are more Ya. This is in style and exe I'll try to be fair here, this is a "YA" book and it comes in telling us it's going to "play" with historical and mythological figures....and play it does. I found the book annoying and wonder at the damage we're doing to our "youths" and their knowledge of mythology, what we can learn from mythology, from the archetypal characters, thoughts, and ideas they contain. Okay, part of rant over. There are different types of YA books. Some are more yA while others are more Ya. This is in style and execution more of a Ya book with emphasis on the "Young" rather than the "adult". With it's repetitive story telling (asking something and then farther on asking it again, and again especially by the boy was a sort of constant). Then however, along with the juvenile storytelling you get attempts at "semi-adult" content that doesn't really work. (view spoiler)[What annoyed me so much? Well, I happen to have a special "feeling" for the Cú Chulainn legend.... I'm not sure how good it is for "youths" to "learn"/be told that "Scáthach" is a vampire. (I know vampires are ubiquitous now... but a mythical Celtic hero, trainer of Cú Chulainn? making her a "teenage vampire", I shudder even now) Shall I go on? The "kids" are annoying... mom and dad are archeologists (believe me I know this because...as noted before "repetition", they just kept telling us over and over). The "kids", the "twins" apparently know quite a bit about this subject, they retained it seems everything ever uttered about it along with a few other subjects, but apparently not much else. Well, of course somehow occasionally one of them (especially the young lady) seems to show odd flashes of almost encyclopedic knowledge of some things. We are told (again over and over) about the electronic devices they "depend" on (especially the young man). They apparently learned everything they know from movies, video games, and maybe their downloaded music. Maybe had they bothered to download a couple of books? These two drove me crazy... they couldn't find electrical outlets in the world tree, and it flummoxed them... okay. (hide spoiler)] There's more and we've all played with mythology I suppose but I'm not really taken with this book. No that's a polite understatement, I'm annoyed with this book and approaching dislike. I'll go with 2 stars, but "just" or barely. Will I read the next book? Haven't decided yet. Oh, one more thing, the book doesn't "conclude" or "end" so much as "stop". Lots I didn't care for... sorry if you liked it. By the way..the fact that Michael Scott is a mythology scholar simply bothers me more. He is of course free to treat these figures as he wishes... I make no complaint about that. But I'm free not to enjoy the given treatment, and I don't. As I say in many cases, if you do enjoy the book then that's good for you...enjoy, not my cup of tea. UPDATE: I'm not planning on following the book up...just letting you know.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Nick Borrelli

    Quick review on this one: Oh how this book conflicted me so. On the one hand, I really enjoyed the story and the characters but ultimately the shoe-horning of SO MANY historical events and figures into the story just curbed my enjoyment of it. I get what the author was trying to do. Flamel was a real person who supposedly discovered the secret to immortality but the cramming in of all of the historical figures that he encountered along the way as well as the significant historical events just ki Quick review on this one: Oh how this book conflicted me so. On the one hand, I really enjoyed the story and the characters but ultimately the shoe-horning of SO MANY historical events and figures into the story just curbed my enjoyment of it. I get what the author was trying to do. Flamel was a real person who supposedly discovered the secret to immortality but the cramming in of all of the historical figures that he encountered along the way as well as the significant historical events just killed it. Could have been so much better but as it is...just average.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Luann

    I enjoyed The Alchemyst more than I thought I would. It didn't sweep me away with the "must finish this book now" feeling, but I also was never bored. Fans of Harry Potter, Fablehaven, Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson books, and even The Da Vinci Code will find interesting connections and similarities here. And yet Scott manages to bring something just a bit new to the table as well. I was interested to learn that many of the main characters (Nicholas Flamel, Perenelle Flamel, and Dr. John Dee) were I enjoyed The Alchemyst more than I thought I would. It didn't sweep me away with the "must finish this book now" feeling, but I also was never bored. Fans of Harry Potter, Fablehaven, Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson books, and even The Da Vinci Code will find interesting connections and similarities here. And yet Scott manages to bring something just a bit new to the table as well. I was interested to learn that many of the main characters (Nicholas Flamel, Perenelle Flamel, and Dr. John Dee) were actually real people and much of what is told as their back story is actually known about them. Other characters in the book come from mythology and folklore. Only the twins, Josh and Sophie Newman, are the author's own creation. I was also interested in the use of modern gadgets, especially in the beginning. Mostly the modern gadgets such as an iPod, texting on a cell phone, and googling for information via a laptop are used to give background information to the reader while showing that these kids are modern teens - although at one point even one of the "Elders" uses a cell phone. As the story progresses, though, the gadgets are left behind. I wouldn't rank this as one of my all-time favorite fantasy stories - even if I'm just limiting to books I've read this year. But I did enjoy it and will certainly read the sequels as I get a chance. If we had half stars, I would give this 3.5.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Kimberly

    REMEMBER: This is Fantasy. Welcome. I experienced a world that was filled with ancient characters (both good and evil), strange creatures, and wonderfully described scenes with TONS of detail. I met twins, a boy and girl, with pure auras who possess magical powers that once awakened will change the world. A 600-year-old alchemyst who performs magic and when doing so the air around smelled like mint. His wife (possibly the same age) is magical in different ways and befriends ghosts. A 2,000 and a h REMEMBER: This is Fantasy. Welcome. I experienced a world that was filled with ancient characters (both good and evil), strange creatures, and wonderfully described scenes with TONS of detail. I met twins, a boy and girl, with pure auras who possess magical powers that once awakened will change the world. A 600-year-old alchemyst who performs magic and when doing so the air around smelled like mint. His wife (possibly the same age) is magical in different ways and befriends ghosts. A 2,000 and a half-year-old Warrior who's also a vegetarian vampire. An evil man about 400-years-old creating mud people and zombies to do his evil bidding as he abides to evil that's far greater than his own. I saw creatures from legend, myth, and nightmares. Along the way many well known faces from history pop in and out of the storyline. I heard mention of Joan of Arc, King Tutankhamen, and Queen Elizabeth I, just to name a few. This story sounds almost unbelievable, right? OK, so maybe all these myths that are intricately mixed into real life can be overwhelming, although it works for me. I love this stuff. How could such a vast amount of information be put into a story and actually make sense? I don't know but it does. And it was easy to understand, take in, and digest as long as I continued to pay attention. It was clever. It was delicious.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Calista

    There were several things I appreciated about this story. I loved that Michael Scott used Auras in his magic system. THANK YOU! It was well done and used well. As someone who works with auras and on occasion can see them, it is fun to have them in a story. Michael also uses Lei lines of the Earth. The Raven Cycle uses those too. That's another great idea to put into a magic story. Lei lines are just the Earth's meridians, simple concept. Another positive about this book is I do like how Michael There were several things I appreciated about this story. I loved that Michael Scott used Auras in his magic system. THANK YOU! It was well done and used well. As someone who works with auras and on occasion can see them, it is fun to have them in a story. Michael also uses Lei lines of the Earth. The Raven Cycle uses those too. That's another great idea to put into a magic story. Lei lines are just the Earth's meridians, simple concept. Another positive about this book is I do like how Michael weaves different mythologies together to create his story and world and wrap it up into his system. Yggdrasil is in the story, and I love the thought of the world tree. I was glad to see this in there and how he used it. It was a cool place to live. This is a good story, a decent story, and average mythology story, in my mind. I think if you want mythology brought into the modern world, Rick Riordan is the way to go. He does it so well. If you don't like the humor and puns, then maybe this will be more your style. Dee, the villain was not fleshed out at all. I don't know any of his motivations. I did not appreciate the cliff-hanger. I need to speak of this so: SPOILER WARNING: I do not think that using King Authors sword, no matter how magical, could kill the Yggdrasil tree. It just isn't going to do that. There is too much life and energy in the tree of life to ever be killed my one sword stab. I didn't buy that. Plus, killing the world tree bothered me. I mean, brutal. The chase didn't seem all that exiting to me and Dee as a villain didn't do much for me either. I didn't feel the stakes here. As I said, this is a good book and it will probably be a decent series. It will probably even get better, but I don't feel the need to go on with the series and I'm a 'finish the series kind of person'. I'm learning that I have so many series to read that I have to chose which series I finish. I think this is a great book for middle grade readers and above who are into mythology or want to get into it. It's not Percy Jackson or Harry Potter.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Grace

    To be honest I would never have read this book had I not been given it for my birthday. It was obviously one of those books that was cranked out immediately after the Harry Potter phenomenon and was unabashedly aimed toward that audience. Now don't get me wrong, I adore Harry Potter and that's probably why this sort of book irritates me. I've picked it up in the bookstore before, interested by the title and catchy cover, but after flipping through it I always put it back. It is very similar to R To be honest I would never have read this book had I not been given it for my birthday. It was obviously one of those books that was cranked out immediately after the Harry Potter phenomenon and was unabashedly aimed toward that audience. Now don't get me wrong, I adore Harry Potter and that's probably why this sort of book irritates me. I've picked it up in the bookstore before, interested by the title and catchy cover, but after flipping through it I always put it back. It is very similar to Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson series in that it uses old mythology and mythical figures for it's main plot. I wasn't enchanted with either of the authors approaches. The characters in The Alchemyst are flat and one dimensional and where he could have gone all out with the 700-10,000 year old beings he stuck with boring, flat interpretations. The twins were just as flat and uninteresting. After an entire book there isn't more one could say about them than: The girl is the thoughtful one who looks out for her brother and makes sure he doesn't get into trouble and the boy is the reckless one. They are also not that likable and at times irritating. I wanted to reach through and smack them when, halfway through the book, they were still insisting that they must be on Candid Camera and the whole thing was a big hoax. The plot wasn't particularly engaging either and it seemed that every other page there had to be a big, magical battle, as if he felt the only way to keep the reader going was to put in action. Personally, I think that is a mark of an adult author who is trying to write for kids. Obviously kids can't read anything deep and are too uninterested and the only way to keep them reading is to pack the entire book with pointless battle scenes. Who needs engaging, round characters and character development? *rolls eyes* It was also very predictable and linear, with no risks or surprises. I'm glad that I decided to read this book on an eleven hour plane ride because that way I could get it over with in a day, without having to drag it out for several. I probably won't read the rest of the series as I was, obviously, far from enchanted by the first one.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Micheline

    I had high hopes when I picked up this book. At the time, I was fresh off the Harry Potter series and had a bad case of 'Post-Potter Depression'. The idea of learning more about the intriguing and mythical 'Nicolas Flamel' (which I had heard of before HP) instantly captivated me, and the book blurb only added fuel to the fire. Sadly, about halfway through I had to shelf this one (DNF). I found the protagonists Sophie and Josh very flat and one-dimensional. They spent most of the time confused or I had high hopes when I picked up this book. At the time, I was fresh off the Harry Potter series and had a bad case of 'Post-Potter Depression'. The idea of learning more about the intriguing and mythical 'Nicolas Flamel' (which I had heard of before HP) instantly captivated me, and the book blurb only added fuel to the fire. Sadly, about halfway through I had to shelf this one (DNF). I found the protagonists Sophie and Josh very flat and one-dimensional. They spent most of the time confused or panicky and quite frankly, I found them annoying. You'd think that out of two protagonist, at least one would have captured my fancy. Yeah, I thought so too, but apparently not. Also, considering the book is named after Nicholas Flamel, I was expecting a lot more of him front and center; not as an almost background character. Making him a titular character on the book cover almost seemed gimmick-y. The man has obviously lived a very long life, there would have been plenty of information or plot to fill this book with. Why mention him in the title if he's barely developed in the book? Every time I walk by these books in bookstores, I get a pang of regret. This had the potential of being an amazing series, it's sad that it was such a letdown.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Stacey

    I'm getting better at my new "don't read bad books" plan. Not that this one is "bad," exactly, so much as it is a little bit irritating. The two kids in the story are just too much. They know everything, can do everything, they're just too perfect. And really Mr. Scott, did you have to attempt to borrow a story from every fantasy written in the last 2000 years and cram it into this one? I mean, really. But what clinched it for me was a main character named "Scatty." Every time I read that name, I'm getting better at my new "don't read bad books" plan. Not that this one is "bad," exactly, so much as it is a little bit irritating. The two kids in the story are just too much. They know everything, can do everything, they're just too perfect. And really Mr. Scott, did you have to attempt to borrow a story from every fantasy written in the last 2000 years and cram it into this one? I mean, really. But what clinched it for me was a main character named "Scatty." Every time I read that name, my mind substituted "Poopy." After a few dozen repetitions of that, I simply had no choice but to call it quits. Poopy. Edit: I was going to give this 2 stars, because it wasn't awful. But how can I give a book anything more than one star when it makes me think of poop on every page?

  15. 4 out of 5

    Sofia

    Well well well... what have we here? Take a look at this incredibly unique and interesting plot: 1. Hello hello, I'm Josh and I like my cell phone. And football. And Superman and Batman, too. I spend 99% of my time looking up things on my 2007 laptop. I am a relatable teenager. 2. Why hi, I'm Sophie. I'm a barista. Rad. I have a lot of sisterly love for Josh. We hold hands sometimes to support each other. We're twins and we never fight because LOVE and PEACE and UNICORNS. 3. Oooh look, this old b Well well well... what have we here? Take a look at this incredibly unique and interesting plot: 1. Hello hello, I'm Josh and I like my cell phone. And football. And Superman and Batman, too. I spend 99% of my time looking up things on my 2007 laptop. I am a relatable teenager. 2. Why hi, I'm Sophie. I'm a barista. Rad. I have a lot of sisterly love for Josh. We hold hands sometimes to support each other. We're twins and we never fight because LOVE and PEACE and UNICORNS. 3. Oooh look, this old bookstore guy we work for is an aLcHeMySt (with a WHYYYY). *info-dump, please continue* 4. Uh-oh, there's an Elder Race of gods who act like teenagers! And some of them are INCREDIBLY EVIL and want to TAKE OVER THE WORLD! And there's a guy helping them who drinks soda and smells like rotten eggs. Intimidating. 5. WHOOOOOAAAA Sophie and Josh have magic!! And they're meant to fulfill a prophecy to stop the bad guy coincidentally! I'm so shocked! Who would have ever thought a middle-grade novel would be written that didn't have a Chosen One narrative! Or a rElAtAbLe TeEnAgE pRoTaGoNiSt! (a.k.a. an adult pretending to be a teenager. Groovy. Oh, did I mention they like Superman? And playing video games on their phone.) 6. WE'RE GONNA GET TRAINED BY MAGICIANS WHOOPEEEEEEE oh wait it's break time, Josh needs to say something stupid and offend an entire race of gods 7. Presumably, they get ambushed by a bunch of monsters and have some cringy deus x machina moment, and then one of the RELATABLE TEENAGERS saves the day, but I dunno, I DNF'ed it before I could figure out how this REALLY INTERESTING plot ends.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Karli

    Dreadful. I appreciate Goodreads because I can read through other negative reviews and feel justified in my hatred of a book. There is not much I can say that hasn't already been said. The book is about Nicholas Flamel the Alchemyst (spelled with a "y" because his author/father wanted him to be yoo-nique!) and a bunch of whiny and conveniently-forever-questioning teenage twins who are on the run from the evil Dr. John Dee (called Dee, which makes him sound like a very silly villain . . . his taglin Dreadful. I appreciate Goodreads because I can read through other negative reviews and feel justified in my hatred of a book. There is not much I can say that hasn't already been said. The book is about Nicholas Flamel the Alchemyst (spelled with a "y" because his author/father wanted him to be yoo-nique!) and a bunch of whiny and conveniently-forever-questioning teenage twins who are on the run from the evil Dr. John Dee (called Dee, which makes him sound like a very silly villain . . . his tagline should have been "I'm Dee . . . tee hee hee"). Dee wants the codex, a magical/prophecy sort of book, and if he gets all of it, the world will end, or something like that. Flamel and the lame twins enlist the help of several of the elder race, who sound cool in theory . . . in theory. What follows is just a whole bunch of messy plot mixed with flashes, aromatherapy, glowing balls, and confusion, and then the book ends. Just ends. Somehow Michael Scott is expecting me to endure more agonizing reading to find out what happens. In the (truly) immortal words of Cher, "AS IF!" Terrible writing. Terrible, terrible boring characters. Terrible plot. Others have mentioned that the mythological and legendary characters were the only interesting point in the book, but I beg to differ. It feels as though all Michael Scott did was blindly throw a dart at a list of legendary heroes and say, "that'll do." Little was said about these characters or their background and awesome stories or places in mythology. All it was was name dropping and plot filling. And then what about Nicholas Flamel, the main fella? Isn't the book called The Alchemyst: the secrets of the immortal Nicholas Flamel? What secrets? Most of the time he sat in the back of a car. Worst.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Connor

    [2019 Reread - 2nd time reading] I read this originally when the first book first came out, and I loved it back then. Now, about a decade later, I went back to see if I would have similar feelings. I still think the weaving of different folklore, histories, and mythologies together is done wonderfully. I've realized that doing this inherently means there is going to be some info dumping so that the author can explain the connections to readers who may not see them all - especially when the autho [2019 Reread - 2nd time reading] I read this originally when the first book first came out, and I loved it back then. Now, about a decade later, I went back to see if I would have similar feelings. I still think the weaving of different folklore, histories, and mythologies together is done wonderfully. I've realized that doing this inherently means there is going to be some info dumping so that the author can explain the connections to readers who may not see them all - especially when the author changes myths to make them overlap. Another example (it's very adult as opposed to for younger readers) is Paternus by Dyrk Ashton. I wish there was a wider range cultures that the immortals were pulled from. In this book, everyone is mostly pulled from European and Egyptian stories. It would be nice to see other beings from other mythologies pop in. Josh is way more angsty than I remember him being. Sophie was always the MC I preferred to read about, and now I know why. He's difficult to relate to because he's such a perfect son - plays football, reads books, does well in school, makes friends easily (or not easily? The book was inconsistent about this), etc. But when he's not in the spotlight, he starts being so annoying about it. Some fifteen-year-olds are like that though, so at least it's something I know happens. The plot progression method was an interesting choice. The novel gets the reader to a cliff hanger, and then it goes backwards to fill in the details from other POVs (points of view). As an example, the characters will be like, "What is that smell?! Rotten Eggs?" And then the story jumps to another character about an hour in the past to talk about what they were doing before the potent odor of rotten eggs invades. It creates a "two steps forward, one step back" method of storytelling, and I wish the plot moved forward continuously instead of constantly jumping back to tell the same hour from a different POV. Not a huge con for me, but it's something that dampened my excitement whenever we reached a cliff hanger moment. I'm going to leave my original rating, but although I enjoyed experiencing the story again, I didn't looove it like I did at sixteen. I'd probably give this around 3.5 stars now. It's a fun ride, but there were a few things that threw me out of the story

  18. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    A lot of people haven't heard of this series, and I don't know why, because these books are AWESOME! We have adventure, we have wit, we have sass, and my absolute favourite... myths and legends coming to life. Topped off with the wonderful absence of teenage drama makes this a delightful read. If you liked the excitement of Harry Potter, the modern mythological adaptations of Percy Jackson and a new take on some of the world's most mysterious legends then this is the book for you. A lot of people haven't heard of this series, and I don't know why, because these books are AWESOME! We have adventure, we have wit, we have sass, and my absolute favourite... myths and legends coming to life. Topped off with the wonderful absence of teenage drama makes this a delightful read. If you liked the excitement of Harry Potter, the modern mythological adaptations of Percy Jackson and a new take on some of the world's most mysterious legends then this is the book for you.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Kaethe Douglas

    The Alchemyst - Michael Scott  The author kept referring to the weather in San Francisco as hot and dry, which, sure, it can be, but mostly isn't. That was strike one.Strike two was the idea that if A is true then everything ever must also be true. Again, it could be, but it doesn't have to be.Strike three was putting the teens into Yggdrasil and having them be shocked, SHOCKED I say, that they can't get cell phone or internet service.Also, there's way too much about auras. I hate auras.   7/31/1 The Alchemyst - Michael Scott  The author kept referring to the weather in San Francisco as hot and dry, which, sure, it can be, but mostly isn't. That was strike one.Strike two was the idea that if A is true then everything ever must also be true. Again, it could be, but it doesn't have to be.Strike three was putting the teens into Yggdrasil and having them be shocked, SHOCKED I say, that they can't get cell phone or internet service.Also, there's way too much about auras. I hate auras.   7/31/17 edited to add: I had a lengthy conversation this morning on the bus to work with a gentleman who loved these books, recommended to him by his son. He also loved several books/series I was lukewarm about, but this was balanced by the number of books we had both loved. So I wanted to look this up and give it a try if I hadn't already, although I thought I had tried it and didn't like it. I might have tried it despite my earlier response because his enthusiasm was so great, but auras are apparently a deal breaker. Then, when I got into work my boss and I chatted about her current book club selection, by an author I dislike who is much admired. Even when it doesn't result in a new book for the TBR list, I really love listening to people talk about their favorites. So many of my most casual conversations are about books these days, and that delights me. Somewhere along the way walking around reading a book became a positive social introduction to me, rather than an asocial rudeness. This twenty-first century world is awesome!  

  20. 4 out of 5

    George Jankovic

    The Alchemyst is a teen/tween book that manages to combine various world mythologies into one. At the center of it is a mysterious Book of Abraham the Mage which has given immortal life to Nicholas Flamel and his wife. But the book can also be used to bring about the return of the Dark Elves and the enslavement of the human kind. Fifteen year old twins, Sophie and Josh, are the only ones who can save or completely destroy the world as has been foretold. I like the story of this book and, especiall The Alchemyst is a teen/tween book that manages to combine various world mythologies into one. At the center of it is a mysterious Book of Abraham the Mage which has given immortal life to Nicholas Flamel and his wife. But the book can also be used to bring about the return of the Dark Elves and the enslavement of the human kind. Fifteen year old twins, Sophie and Josh, are the only ones who can save or completely destroy the world as has been foretold. I like the story of this book and, especially, how it fits many historical people, events and facts into it. Enjoy!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Simcsa

    3.5 stars The main problems of the series: (I read the first four books) 1. The story takes place in a few days (the first book - 2 days, the second one - 3 days...). If it continues like this, the world will be saved in what? Two weeks? The war lasts milleniums, there are centuries old people and even older creatures, yet two children (ehm.. teenagers) are going to end it in a matter of weeks? 2. As I said, characters here are usually living on the earth for some time, some of them are even ten th 3.5 stars The main problems of the series: (I read the first four books) 1. The story takes place in a few days (the first book - 2 days, the second one - 3 days...). If it continues like this, the world will be saved in what? Two weeks? The war lasts milleniums, there are centuries old people and even older creatures, yet two children (ehm.. teenagers) are going to end it in a matter of weeks? 2. As I said, characters here are usually living on the earth for some time, some of them are even ten thousand years old and wouldn't you expect to actually see that for yourself? It just never felt like they are that old, that they have lived for so long.. Using sentences like "I glanced something ancient in her eyes." isn't enough. 3. Josh. He is super annoying and it doesn't get better, it's even worse further into the series. He is selfish, he wants power, he doesn't trust anyone (even his sister), he is absolutely clumsy, he doesn't know how to behave... The list goes on, still he is one of the good guys. And his attitude towards his twin.. (he envies her everything!) 4. Sophie is too perfect and it makes her kind of bland, her character lacks life and personality, she is just boooring.. 5. How many languages can a person learn? I mean that even if someone was centuries old could he actually speak 20 languages? Is it even possible? I personally don't believe it. Scathach (about 2 thousands years old) speaks hundreds of languages fluently. Huh? 6. A lot of padding. The author doesn't know how to write dialogues and there are many unnecesary scenes. Imagine: two villains are sitting in an office in their suits and talking about how to kill Flamel. 7. At the end of each book is cliffhanger!! I really liked the book one, it was quite interesting and original, I was willing to overlook the flaws, but as the series keep going, it's getting worse and worse and now I'm considering whether to read on or not. As I said, the concept is great, all that mystical creatures, tangled mythology and famous people still living and action scenes are also good (even if they become repetitive after a time), but I have never really cared about the characters and the writing is mediocre plus all the points I made above... Nope, I don't recommend it.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Elle (ellexamines)

    Yet another book I loved as a kid and then stopped loving. Maybe I should just forget about reviewing these. Thousands of different world myths and world historical facts are integrated into one clever world. There's some interesting worldbuilding surrounding auras, which, although slightly overcomplicated, is certainly interested. As the series continues, however, it gets more confusing than enjoyable. As a fantasy story, this does fall a bit on the cliche side. There's the wise old mentor, who Yet another book I loved as a kid and then stopped loving. Maybe I should just forget about reviewing these. Thousands of different world myths and world historical facts are integrated into one clever world. There's some interesting worldbuilding surrounding auras, which, although slightly overcomplicated, is certainly interested. As the series continues, however, it gets more confusing than enjoyable. As a fantasy story, this does fall a bit on the cliche side. There's the wise old mentor, who happens to be incredibly unlikable here, and if course the Chosen One trope. But in general, the myths used are creative enough to hold up the story. The characters are also exceptionally flat. Twins Sophie and Josh have contrasting destinies; one will save the world, and the other will destroy it. Unfortunately, the ambiguity of both these characters on the moral side is barely explored. In general, this series is a bit of a romp in wasted potential. It's fun as a kid, but it's nothing really special.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Deacon Tom F

    Amazing Book! More soon

  24. 5 out of 5

    Sheila Beaumont

    I'm revisiting this fascinating fantasy series, which features Nicholas Flamel, John Dee, the Witch of Endor, Bastet, Hecate, and many other characters of history and legend, via audiobook. Excellent narration by Denis O'Hare. I'm revisiting this fascinating fantasy series, which features Nicholas Flamel, John Dee, the Witch of Endor, Bastet, Hecate, and many other characters of history and legend, via audiobook. Excellent narration by Denis O'Hare.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Jessika

    Update 2019 Having read and reviewed this book before, I don't actually have too much to add to my original review. I will say that I'm glad I read this one again because I think I actually enjoyed the story much more this time around. I suppose I could chalk that up to knowing more and understanding more of the mythology now that I'm a bit older. The Alchemyst is one of those books that I enjoyed more for the actual story than for the writing itself. The story is a lot of fun and a romping good Update 2019 Having read and reviewed this book before, I don't actually have too much to add to my original review. I will say that I'm glad I read this one again because I think I actually enjoyed the story much more this time around. I suppose I could chalk that up to knowing more and understanding more of the mythology now that I'm a bit older. The Alchemyst is one of those books that I enjoyed more for the actual story than for the writing itself. The story is a lot of fun and a romping good adventure, but the writing felt a little "young" to me. I hesitate to call this middle grade, but it's definitely on the younger side of YA. None of this is a bad thing, I'm just staying that it's more along the lines of Percy Jackson than Harry Potter. The only thing I wasn't really a fan of was the twins, especially Josh. They felt a little generic to me, and Josh just got on my nerves. This could be due to the fact that this first book in the series took place over a span of two days, which doesn't allow for much growth. I'm definitely going to continue on with the series, so we'll see. All in all, this was a fun read and one that I think would appeal to a lot of readers, particularly younger readers or even those who might be a bit more on the reluctant side. This was a quick read, full of mythology and adventure, that had be flipping the pages. I was immediately dropped into the action, and the magic built from there--it was hard to read just one chapter! I'm not sure why it ultimately took me so long to read this. I think maybe it was just going by so fast that I didn't want it to end! I'm truly looking forward to seeing where the series goes, what between seeing some of my favorite myths and legends brought to life and learning about ones I had never heard of before. If you're looking for a light, but not necessarily fluffy read, look no further! This was a great beginning to a promising fantasy series. And as I mentioned, these books would be great to encourage younger readers to fall in love with the magic of reading! Original review 2011 I first started reading this a couple years ago when I stumbled across a free .pdf version of this on Amazon. At the time, I thought it was decent, but it was different than what I expected. I ended up not finishing it because my computer crashed, but that's a story for another day. Fast forward to a couple weeks ago when one of my friends from work recommended this to me and even let me borrow his copy. It did not take me long to become engrossed in these pages. For fans of Harry Potter and mythology, this is a must-read. Personally, I think the magic elements and the mythology are one of the stronger elements of this novel. It was definitely cool to see the myths "come to life," some I was familiar with and some that were new to me. You can really tell that Michael Scott knows mythology inside and out, but it's not like he's smacking you over the head with endless details about them. There is just enough to understand the myth and its importance to the story without feeling like a history lesson. Not only that, but the Flamels and Dee were real people, which was an interesting twist. With the setting in our own world, too, Michael Scott makes it easy to imagine this story taking place in a world parallel to our own. And that's truly what this novel really is--quite imaginative. I would definitely recommend this to young readers because it is so easy to envision all that's taking place among the pages. Another thing working for this book is its pacing. The events of this first book take place over a mere two days. Right off the bat, you find out that the Flamels will die within a month without the Codex, so you know it will be fast-paced. The pages definitely flew by for me, and now I can't wait to get my hands on a copy of the second book. There is constant action, and there are constant twists and turns. This is one of those books where you'll find yourself saying "Just one more chapter...just one more chapter..." and end up staying up way too late at night reading. I'm glad I finally gave this an entire read--it was definitely worth it! This is without a doubt a series to check out for those who are fans of YA fantasy!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Katie

    I was first interested in this book for the same reason I'm sure it made the New York Times bestseller list...because it is about Nicholas Flamel, who is mentioned in the Harry Potter books, specifically in the first book about the Sorceror's Stone, as being a friend of Professor Dumbledore. Flamel was a real historical figure though who lived in the 1300's, was a scientist who practiced alchemy, and supposedly discovered the secret to eternal life (related to the sorceror's stone) as well as tu I was first interested in this book for the same reason I'm sure it made the New York Times bestseller list...because it is about Nicholas Flamel, who is mentioned in the Harry Potter books, specifically in the first book about the Sorceror's Stone, as being a friend of Professor Dumbledore. Flamel was a real historical figure though who lived in the 1300's, was a scientist who practiced alchemy, and supposedly discovered the secret to eternal life (related to the sorceror's stone) as well as turning coal into diamonds and common metals into gold. The myth is that he and his wife are still alive to this day, the proof of that coming from the fact that their tomb in Paris is empty. I thought this book would be interesting by not only weaving in historical facts about Flamel but also telling a fictional story about what he would be doing today if he were in fact still living. The story itself got increasingly interesting but the writing leaves much to be desired. The gentleman sitting next to me on a flight back from Philadelphia said he'd read it also and told me that it was originally written in another language and that we were reading a translation, which would explain the strange phrasing. He didn't understand how it made the bestseller list though, but I am certain it's due to the Harry Potter connection. Along with other reviewers on this site, I don't care for the constant allusions to pop culture (iPods, Bluetooth headsets, Wikipedia, etc), which will most certainly date it within a few years. And I also don't care to hear for the umpteenth time that the main characters' parents (who are only mentioned at times and not ever involved in the plot) are archaeologists, which is somehow supposed to mean something but to me seems like an irrelevant sidenote. The characters, despite the fact that they were almost all real people who historically we know existed, or they were mythical creatures whose stories have been shared through generations, were just flat and one-dimensional. I couldn't get into the story because the characters had no depth. The author could have really fleshed them out more, considering he had a lot of historical fact and details to work with, but perhaps he assumed readers would know all the characters already? Sorry, I'm not well-educated in worldwide ancient mythology! Overall, it was an okay book; I have the sequel since I had assumed I would enjoy the first book much more than I actually did, and I'm not sure if I'm going to read it or not.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Mike Meier

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This Book was AMAZING. The plot was incredibly clever. the author is a master of suspense. This book is a Sci-fi Action/Adventure book With a hint of a mystery. This book is about a boy and his sister working normal lives until their completly normal boss Nicholas Flamel is attacked by Gray men in black suits. Their boss turn out to be a Magic ball of energy casting alchemyst and he is an immortal. there are three main characters allthough i cannot remember their names, but these characters are This Book was AMAZING. The plot was incredibly clever. the author is a master of suspense. This book is a Sci-fi Action/Adventure book With a hint of a mystery. This book is about a boy and his sister working normal lives until their completly normal boss Nicholas Flamel is attacked by Gray men in black suits. Their boss turn out to be a Magic ball of energy casting alchemyst and he is an immortal. there are three main characters allthough i cannot remember their names, but these characters are all round characters and they change through the story. In this book the brother and sister go on an adventure with an immortal named nicholas flamel. During this they try to save the world from the dark forces and the EVIL "Doctor" The Dominant impression i got was A long Broken up road. i thoguht this because they travel on a logn journey and have lots of harships but they make it though in the end...i hope! The sequal is The Magician i will be reading this book to.

  28. 5 out of 5

    সালমান হক

    I love the authors style because his writing can be understood by a younger audience, however it isn't a nusence to readers of a higher reading level. He does this by using loads of sensory detail, similes, metaphors and imagery. This book is one of my favorites and look forwards to reading the other books in the series. I don't think this book is comparable to any of the others I have read because it has such a unique plot theme and style all of which are impossible without this talented author I love the authors style because his writing can be understood by a younger audience, however it isn't a nusence to readers of a higher reading level. He does this by using loads of sensory detail, similes, metaphors and imagery. This book is one of my favorites and look forwards to reading the other books in the series. I don't think this book is comparable to any of the others I have read because it has such a unique plot theme and style all of which are impossible without this talented author. I cannot tell you how long I've waited to begin this series, but I think it is a common dilemma for readers when they get distracted by other books. Still, it's nice to finally get around to reading this. I'm a huge fan of mythology and legend, and I was immediately curious about this Nicholas Flamel character. I remember him being mentioned in Harry Potter and the Sorcerre's Stone before,and I suppose I wanted a different author's take on this matter. I was clearly not disappointed. The whole book actually reminded me of the books in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians Series, in the way that there was no dull moment. From start to finish, The Alchemyst was just full of non-stop action and magical happenings. Things picked up very quickly; just about a few pages in and the main characters, Sophie and Josh had already witnessed enough magical mumbo jumbo to last a year. I really liked the twins; there's a sort of nice, familiar dynamic there that I can't yet put a finger on. Although quite a lot was revealed about Nicholas Flamel, I think that there's a lot more in need of uncovering about him, and I guess with about six more books in the series,that won't be a problem. I'm also pretty curious about Perenelle, and was a bit bummed that she spent the whole book in captivity. I was also pretty fond of Scathac's character, though I keep imagining her to look like a hotter version of Rachel Elizabeth Dare from PJO. I just love how Michael Scott used a bunch of mythology to put the whole story together. Even actual historical facts interwoven nicely with the plot of the novel. I liked seeing some more or less familiar mythological beings, like Hekate and Bastet. I was a bit confused by how Hekate supposedly created Yggdrasill, since Hekate's a Greek goddess and I know Yggdrasill to be a reference to Norse mythology, but hey I think it worked out nicely. I also knew Morrigan to be a sorceress in the Arthurian legends, but in this particular book, she's the Crow Godess, so I was a bit confused by thaT. I also liked encountering less familiar characters, like Dr. John Dee and the Witch of Endor. I loved the creativity of the plot, and everything was incredibly fast paced. I liked the whole battle toward the end. Toward the end I was a bit worried about Josh's choice, but I'm glad he still chose right. I still want a bit more clarification about the whole Book and Prophecy thing, but I'm sure that'll be arranged for me soon. This is definitely a series to keep up with. :) In conclusion I would recommend this book to everyone because the author makes use of imagery, sensory detail and similes.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jackie "the Librarian"

    This is a serviceable fantasy that I plodded through. I liked the settings and descriptions - Scathach's dojo, Hekate's tree, the mix of characters from mythology, all very cool. But the story never grabbed me, I never had trouble putting the book down. I think it suffers from a lack of focus - since we don't follow just one character, we don't get much character development, and so we don't care very much about what happens to them. And I was disappointed that we didn't get to a natural break in This is a serviceable fantasy that I plodded through. I liked the settings and descriptions - Scathach's dojo, Hekate's tree, the mix of characters from mythology, all very cool. But the story never grabbed me, I never had trouble putting the book down. I think it suffers from a lack of focus - since we don't follow just one character, we don't get much character development, and so we don't care very much about what happens to them. And I was disappointed that we didn't get to a natural break in the story at the end of the book - it just stopped. Yes, I know this is book one of a seven book series, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't get some kind of payoff for reading this one. I prefer The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan, or Faerie Wars by Herbie Brennan. Both of these have a bit more humor, too.

  30. 5 out of 5

    PurplyCookie

    Scott uses a gigantic canvas for this riveting fantasy. The well-worn theme of saving the world from the forces of evil gets a fresh look here as he incorporates ancient myth and legend and sets it firmly, pitch-perfect, in present-day California. At the emotional center of the tale are contemporary 15-year-old twins, Josh and Sophie, who, it turns out, are potentially powerful magicians. They are spoken of in a prophecy appearing in the ancient Book of Abraham the Mage, all but two pages of whi Scott uses a gigantic canvas for this riveting fantasy. The well-worn theme of saving the world from the forces of evil gets a fresh look here as he incorporates ancient myth and legend and sets it firmly, pitch-perfect, in present-day California. At the emotional center of the tale are contemporary 15-year-old twins, Josh and Sophie, who, it turns out, are potentially powerful magicians. They are spoken of in a prophecy appearing in the ancient Book of Abraham the Mage, all but two pages of which have been stolen by evil John Dee, alchemist and magician. The pursuit of the twins and Flamel by Dee and his allies to get the missing pages constitutes the book's central plot. Amid all this exhilarating action, Scott keeps his sights on the small details of character and dialogue and provides evocative descriptions of people, mythical beings, and places. He uses as his starting point the figures of the historical alchemist Nicholas Flamel and his wife, who have found the secret of immortality, along with mythical beings, including the terrifying Scottish crow-goddess, the Morrigan; the three-faced Greek Hekate; the powerful Egyptian cat-goddess, Bastet; and Scathach, a legendary Irish woman warrior and vegetarian vampire. I have always been a fan of mythology so this is right up my alley. I love that the author has taken many of the myths from the world over and combined them. What an original and interesting idea. I am also learning about myths that I had never heard of. A skillful weave of history and legend, the first installment of this story leaves few ancient myths unexplained--The Greek legend Icarus, the Great London Fire, the Viking god Odin, vampires, the Black Plague of Europe, the Island of Atlantis, the Irish Potato Famine, martial arts, witches, the Philosopher's Stone, and the secret of eternal life--amazingly, though, none of them feels out of place. They help transform this fast-paced rollercoaster of magic, mystery and myth into a new legend that explains the stories of the past and holds the secret to all the ones to come. The lack of characterization in certain respects can probably put off a lot of readers. While the characters are not cardboard cutouts, their personalities and histories are not endlessly filled in with details supplied by the story. A reader will have to look hard to figure out who Josh, Sophie, and the Flamels are underneath all of the things that are happening in the story. I’m just wondering, if Flamel needs to get the elixir brewed--but he needs the book--my question is: after so many years, hasn't he memorized the recipe?! More of Purplycookie’s Reviews @: http://www.goodreads.com/purplycookie Book Details: Title The Alchemyst (The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel, #1) Author Michael Scott Reviewed By Purplycookie

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