The Magic Half

I picked this book because I was reasonably sure that it would fulfill the required “book read in one day” spot on my 2015 Reading Challenge. I was only reasonably sure because I can never guarantee exactly how quickly I’ll be able to read a book. I don’t tend to read much during the day when there’s so much more active things to do, but I do enjoy nothing less than laying in bed with a book. Until it hits me on the nose because I’ve fallen asleep with it above me.

Anyway, it was a risk to start this book on a weekday because I leave for work at 7:30 and don’t get home until after 5 usually. But this has been an unusual (and economically sucky) week, so I knew there was a good chance I’d get plenty of time to read at work. I actually read half of this book between 8 and 9 this morning because there simply wasn’t a reason to punch in until I had enough work in front of me for at least 3 hours. I hate the idea of punching in and out all day for 30 minute jobs and I despise the idea of being on the clock while not working. Sure, I did read for about 20 minutes on the clock today, but that was while I was literally waiting for the photo-polymer to imprint into the matrix board (I suppose that’s a way to describe it), the matrix board to harden, and for the rubber to mold into the matrix board. In all 3 cases, me and my dad refer to it as “cooking” because it’s all done in a heat press (though the matrix board doesn’t need pressure to cure). All 3 steps take 7 minutes when you can literally do nothing but wait. The pressmen often play games or watch movies on their phones while the presses do the work, but whereas these distractions can cause them to miss when the ink starts to “dry up”, when you’re cooking photo-polymer, matrix board, and rubber, there’s simply nothing that needs to be watched. If it’s going to mess up, you can’t stop it mid-process. Sure, I could have taken a minute to cut the one piece of wood I needed and got that ready to go, but seriously, I got paid for 3 hours and 15 minutes today–my boss can eat the time I didn’t spend multi-tasking.

In case you couldn’t figure that out, I was making rubber stamps today. Though half of them were technically MaxLight Stamps. My first love is rubber, but the MaxLights are pretty nifty, too. The company we buy from actually sent us a new machine to make MaxLights (FREE!) because they changed the design so that their stamps no longer work with the machine we have. I was pretty happy to spend 10 minutes reading it’s manual from cover to cover to learn that the only real difference is how it clamps and that there’s a piece that must be removed instead of added, depending on things.

But I’m seriously digressing over here! Sorry!

The Magic Half is exactly the kind of book I adored when I was a kid. There’s magic and a charming locale and spunky girls. Adults will like it for it’s depth–how many kid’s books really question the practicalities of time travel? My only complaint is that I wished there was some kind of additional plot-twist at the end that explained why Miri’s family moved into the house in the first place. If you’ve read this book, you’ll understand what I mean. I think that that would have added more than what the current ending gives.

Anyway. If you’re looking for a very quick read that will take you back to your childhood and refresh your imagination, this book is for you. And if you’re looking for something to hand any 8 to 11 year old girl, go with this one as well.

London Candy Kitchen, 1938
London Candy Kitchen, 1938 by Photoblog
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Ralston PA Main Street Postcard
Ralston PA Main Street Postcard by vintageamerican
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