Bess’ Book Recs: Amari and the Night Brothers by B. B. Alston

Okay y’all, this one was a lot of fun, and I can’t wait for the sequel. (There has to be one, right?)

You’re a wizard, Amari.

Okay, not really, but you do get a very similar vibe to The Boy Wizard, only American, with a young Black girl, and a lot more bureaucracy. So if you’ve been missing that kind of feeling, or wished you could read Harry Potter and the Sorc-osopher’s Stone for the first time again, definitely check this one out.

Despite being fairly thick for a middle grade (I think? It’s 408 pages) nothing drags. I could almost have used some breaks in the action, just for a breather, but I was so hooked on ‘but what comes next!?’ that I didn’t miss them.

Amari’s missing brother gets her into a specialty training program where she learns about the supernatural world and her own powers. She makes some friends, deals with some bullies, and tries to uncover the mystery behind her brother’s disappearance. There’s a lot of wacky departments in this bureaucracy that are a lot of fun to read about, and Amari’s journey of self-discovery doesn’t change only her, but the people and society around her in pretty powerful ways.

The ending wraps up in a really satisfying way, but still leaves enough threads that there’s plenty of room for a sequel and I, for one, can’t wait to see what Amari does next.

(And since the movie rights have been sold, I’m looking forward to the movie too!)

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