Kelley and her twin brother Jeroan just moved to Dubuque, Iowa. Their parents uprooted them from their home in Chicago after learning that Jeroan had gotten mixed up with a gang. As the only black girl in her grade, Kelley is not pleased about the move.
One cold morning in November, after trying (unsuccessfully) to keep Jeroan out of trouble again, she gets “infected” by magic after reading aloud from a small leatherbound book she finds.
She also blows up the family home at the same time.
Soon Kelley and Jeroan must face up to a power-hungry, centuries-old Sorcerer who wants to rid the world of what he calls “renegade” magic-users. Only Kelley’s new way of using magic will save their new city and their magically infected friends, though she may lose her brother in the process.
A novel for all ages about magic, growing up, and finding your place within those two very different realms.
This is the first book in the Contagious Magic series of novels. A sequel, A Wild Epidemic of Magic, was released in July 2012. The third book in the series is A Lasting Curing for Magic, is due out in June 2013.
- Buy a PDF directly from UnWrecked Press
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- Trade paperback available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, CreateSpace, and IndieBound.
- Audio version available from Amazon, Audible, and iTunes.
Read the opening to ASOoM Right Here!
In early 2012, I serialized the entire novel here at my site. I’ve since taken down the later chapters, but you can still read the opening here:
History and Related Stories
A fun side note — I originally began work on this idea back in 1993 or so, back when I was teaching junior high English and Reading. I wrote a mini-scene about one of my characters for an exercise in descriptive writing.
Read more about the history of this book in an essay I wrote for the Flames Rising site: “A Brief History of Magic” (the essay’s title is awesome, and it was their idea!).
Further, my story “Coal Ash and Sparrows,” which was published in Asimov’s, takes place in the same setting as this novel.
Also, the novella entitled “The Last Sorcerer” is one of my first-ever stories, and it includes the seeds of this novel.
And finally, I have a related story about the secret history of magic, entitled “The Inverted Bearded Boy of Chicago.”