The Rules of Magic - Alice Hoffman

The Rules of Magic

By Alice Hoffman

  • Release Date: 2017-10-10
  • Genre: Literary
4.5 Score: 4.5 (From 146 Ratings)




From beloved author Alice Hoffman comes the spellbinding prequel to her bestseller, Practical Magic.

Find your magic.

For the Owens family, love is a curse that began in 1620, when Maria Owens was charged with witchery for loving the wrong man.

Hundreds of years later, in New York City at the cusp of the sixties, when the whole world is about to change, Susanna Owens knows that her three children are dangerously unique. Difficult Franny, with skin as pale as milk and blood red hair, shy and beautiful Jet, who can read other people’s thoughts, and charismatic Vincent, who began looking for trouble on the day he could walk.

From the start Susanna sets down rules for her children: No walking in the moonlight, no red shoes, no wearing black, no cats, no crows, no candles, no books about magic. And most importantly, never, ever, fall in love. But when her children visit their Aunt Isabelle, in the small Massachusetts town where the Owens family has been blamed for everything that has ever gone wrong, they uncover family secrets and begin to understand the truth of who they are. Back in New York City each begins a risky journey as they try to escape the family curse.

The Owens children cannot escape love even if they try, just as they cannot escape the pains of the human heart. The two beautiful sisters will grow up to be the revered, and sometimes feared, aunts in Practical Magic, while Vincent, their beloved brother, will leave an unexpected legacy. Thrilling and exquisite, real and fantastical, The Rules of Magic is a story about the power of love reminding us that the only remedy for being human is to be true to yourself.


  • Prequel to Practical Magic

    By Kris Anderson, The Avid Reader
    The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman is a prequel to Practical Magic. The Owens family has a long magical heritage, but their family was cursed in 1620. Vincent, Franny and Jet Owens are the children of Susanna and James Owens. Susanna denies her magical heritage and has many rules in place for her children. One day when Franny turns seventeen she receives an invitation from her Aunt Isabelle. They three siblings are invited to Massachusetts for the summer to learn about their heritage and their gifts. Vincent, Franny and Jet set out to escape the family curse to find happiness and love. Is there a chance for them to find the love and keep it? Find out what happens Vincent, Franny and Jet before Sally and Gillian enter their lives in Practical Magic. The Rules of Magic can be enjoyed without having read or watched Practical Magic. I found The Rules of Magic to be boring (sad, but true). It seemed like every single thing the author had read about witches (or thought of) was stuffed into this story. The best way to describe it is too “woo-woo” (best description for it). The teens in the story go out of their way to break every rule set forth by their parents and do the opposite of what they are supposed to do. The characters kept repeating the same mistakes over and over throughout the book (even as adults). I found the main characters (Jet, Franny, and Vincent) to be unlikeable. It seemed that the author was trying too hard with The Rules of Magic. I thought the pacing was inconsistent. It would go along at a nice pace (in the beginning) and then slow down to a crawl (it plodded along to the end). I found it a chore to read The Rules of Magic. There were a couple of bright spots, but they were few and far between.
  • Liked it a lot

    By Bbh8008
    I’ve already recommended the book to two people.
  • A waste!

    By Ann Leary
    I finished the book because I paid for it and because I was hoping, at some point it would have some Spirit! No reason to even write this novel, it never goes anywhere. AND you repeat and detail because there really is NO story....a stupid book and a terrible waste of my money!!
  • Fair. Had hoped to get hooked.

    By Crewp
    Despite + reviews, I just couldn’t get into it.
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  • The Rules of Magic

    By Forever Read
  • Amazing

    By Mike & Bret
  • Amazing!

    By Gator_mom
    One of the best I’ve ever read
  • Simply wonderful

    By Melee1118
    No words for how wonderful it was to spend time with these characters. Alice Hoffman did an amazing job... I was moved to tears several times while on this adventure. Kudos.
  • pulled me in start to finish

    By Toni FGMAMTC
    The Rules of Magic is a family saga about the Owens. Siblings Franny, Jet and Vincent are the main focus, but many well-developed characters fill the story. It follows the siblings from childhood through old age. It also goes back to explain how the love curse started with their ancestors during the Salem witch trials. The reader journeys with Franny, Jet and Vincent as they study their history, learn their abilities and face hardships and tough decisions. The writing is beautiful and easily brought the emotions out. The plot is rich with historical events and in-depth multilayered characters. I feel like I actually know these people and love them. I'm a little sad that my time with them ended.