Zoella Book Club Review: The Potion Diaries

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In the magical world of Nova, the population is split into the Talented (those with magical abilities), and normal people. The Royal family, of course, is Talented. When Princess Evelyn accidentally poisons herself with a love potion meant for her crush, the Kingdom is thrown into disarray. A 'Wilde Hunt' is called and great riches and power will befall the alchemist clever enough to devise a cure.

Samantha Kemi, an apprentice alchemist, is ready to take up the Hunt. Hailing from one of the oldest alchemical dynasties in Nova, she is desperate to modernise the failing family business and give her Talented sister a good education. To do so, all she needs to do is divine what rare ingredients the Princess used for her potion, travel to the far reaches of the world to get them, and beat out her family's arch-nemesis ZoroAster Corp, while avoiding the weirdly-adoring gaze of the dashing Zain Aster. What could be easier?

Zain Aster has been dragged into the Hunt by his father. As leaders of ZoroAster Corp, the largest synthetic potions company in Nova, and personal physicians to the royal family, they have a responsibility to win the Hunt, or lose face. Constantly confronting danger & the alchemist-with-attitude Sam Kemi, Zain desperately wants to save his close friend, Princess Evelyn, but are other feelings getting in his way?

Just to add to the pressure the Hunt is being followed by everyone and is plastered all over social media. In the race to cure the Princess, can Sam find the cure and win the boy's heart?

The Potion Diaries (also known as Madly in the USA) is a quick, fun, light-hearted read that just makes you smile. Aimed at the younger end of Young Adult readers it has all the thrills of The Amazing Race, with a magical twist. Samantha Kemi is strong, smart, talented and resourceful. I haven't enjoyed a female character so much since Harry Potter's Hermione.

Perfect for ages 10+