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The Flask

3.58  ·  Rating Details ·  264 Ratings  ·  66 Reviews
Jess has a secret: a mysterious glass flask she finds in an heirloom desk's hidden compartment. Its surface swirls with iridescent colors, like something's inside, something almost like a song, something with a soul. No one else sees anything under the shifting glass, but Jess is convinced there must be some kind of magic in there. And when her twin brothers are born criti ...more
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published February 2nd 2012 by HarperCollins Children's Books
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Cindy Hudson
Apr 05, 2013 Cindy Hudson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Jess is exploring a bureau she received after her Aunt Edie died when she discovers a mysterious bottle that seems to hold a life force of some kind. She’s mesmerized by the swirling colors and the way the bottle sometimes feels warm and glowing while other times it is dark and cold. When her twin brothers are born conjoined and struggling for life, she begins to sense that whatever is in the bottle may hold the key to their survival.

Under Shifting Glass by Nicky Singer is mystical, heartfelt, a
Aug 23, 2015 Lorena rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm not normally the kind of person you can catch writing a book review. But here I am. That's the thing- sometimes you read a book that's so good that you can't simply go about your day knowing you didn't write a review.

First things first, I'll talk about Jess, as the book is mostly about her view of all of this change. Other comments talk about how Jess was being irrational and an annoying narrator and all. I don't necessarily agree. Her twin brothers, born conjoined, are a massive cause of w
I was so excited to read this book! It's an incredible story about love and family and leads you to wonder what is and isn't real. Maybe there are people in the world who can see much more than everyone else can. Maybe there are forces out there beyond comprehension. These thoughts are explored in Under Shifting Glass as Jess is quite different from everyone else and sees things no one else does.

I loved our main character from the beginning. Jess is a little odd and most people seem to know that
{ I received an ARC for free through Early Reviewers on LibraryThing. Review originally posted on my blog, PidginPea's Book Nook. }

Wow. This book was beautiful. I wasn't expecting it to really touch my heart like it did. I kind of thought it would be a book about Jess's family troubles with a paranormal twist in the form of the flask. But it was so, so much more than that. I really am just in shock with how fantastic this book was.

Under Shifting Glass does deal with Jess's family - her mother (p
Oct 13, 2012 Katie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf-f, ya
This one is coming out in the spring through Chronicle (my publisher), and it involves conjoined twins, so be warned that I'm biased every which-way. The plot is deliciously strange: Jess finds a magic bottle that she believes holds sway over the fate of her recently born conjoined twin brothers. The theme hit most heavily is how things--people, events, the universe--fit together. But for me, this story is really about the experience of being a sensitive person in a (sometimes) painful world. A ...more
Michelle (Much Loved Books)
I have seen The Flask before but not really heard a lot about it, so when the opportunity came along to get if off netgalley via HarperCollins UK I picked it up.

Jess, still grieving over the loss of her Aunt, inherits a bureau and finds flask inside it with a strange glowing light. As Jess investigates the flask and the light she makes a connection between it and her twin brothers. When something happens to the flask and her brothers at the same time she makes it her mission to ensure the safety
Annmichelle Klingelhafer
This book, Under Shifting Glass, is so beautiful. It was a joy to read, and incredibly thought-provoking. It had me hanging from its every thread, aching to read more. First I was beginning the book, then I was on chapter 23, then I was done. It's just that good! A young girl struggles as she must deal with the death of her aunt, the worry that comes with conjoined twins unborn in her mother's womb, and the stress of a changing friendship. She has a very strong connection to music, and so wishe ...more
Miss Literati
Feb 22, 2013 Miss Literati rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nicky Singer’s UNDER SHIFTING GLASS is a deep, emotional story about a girl and a mysterious bottle.

Jessica Walton is struggling with the death of her beloved Great Aunt Edie. Upon Edie’s death, Jess is given her aunt’s old bureau and inside it she finds a strange bottle. That very same day, her twin brothers are born joined at the chest. Jess decides that the bottle and the twins are somehow linked. She becomes even more convinced when, during the night, the bottle turns black and starts to how
Jun 12, 2013 Maggie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya-and-kidlit
Oddly, I liked almost everything about this book EXCEPT the central plot conceit of the glass bottle Jess finds that holds the secret to her conjoined twin brothers' survival. It isn't that I don't like books with mystical elements, or magical realism, because I certainly do. For some reason, this part of the book just didn't work for me. But I loved everything else. The characterizations are so strong, and the way Singer portrays relationships is amazing. What Singer focuses on are pairs and co ...more
/review to come

adored. exquisite.


nothing like I'd thought it was to be.

might not ever give up this ARC.

Reminded me of.

Chronicle also published.

Oh, this was exquisite. I had completely misunderstood

I just won an ARC off GoodReads, and it was extraordinary. Completely different than what I thought it would be (which had been along the lines of 'young girl falls in love with/saves vampire' except with a genie -- and this was not the plot. So not), and I fell in love with it utterly.

I though
Aug 02, 2013 Sharon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very good teen book about beginnings and endings, friendships and family, children and parents, best friends and just friends. Lots of real life and a little bit of magic. Jess does a lot of growing and changing and at the same time staying who she really is inside. I liked this book very much and enjoyed how it was written to be easily digested in short little chapters that seemed to say a lot in a minimum of words. Recommend to anyone who enjoys a good story with a little magic thrown in, whet ...more
Book Review & Giveaway: We’re participating in the Lucky Leprechaun Giveaway Hop. Our giveaway for this hop is Under Shifting Glass by award-winning children’s author Nicky Singer. This novel has been rated for grades six and up, and is really targeted toward middle school kids. It deals with the fragile nature of life and friendship, and how those issues affect people. It will make an excellent addition to any school or family library. And we’re giving away an advance readers copy (ARC) to ...more
Suzanne Dix
Reviewed by a 6th grader: Jess's mother is remarried and is pregnant with Siamese twins, but Jess doesn't realize that another change is about to come. Her beloved Aunt Edie died and Jess inheirts her desk. Jess soon discovers a mystical flask hidden in the desk that may or may not have a living being inside. When the twins are born, there is not a very good chance of survival, and Jess thinks that the 'thing' is the key to her brother's survival.

The book was written extremely well and had just
Feb 28, 2013 Jenn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
This was a wonderful read! This book is perfect for a young girl that is going through changes in her life, due to loosing a loved one, a growing family, or just fights with friends. You become a part of Jess's life and watch her mature and grow in the book. There is such a spirit in Jess that you come to love and understand as things in life that only an innocent child can connect and how at times they take on the whole world on their shoulders and feel that something small that they do or didn ...more
Pam Saunders
Apr 20, 2013 Pam Saunders rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Quiet, understated, mystical.

Jess is suffering, her piano playing Aunt Eddie has died. Her mother is about to give birth to 'the twins', twins who are conjoined. Then she is given Aunt Eddie's ancient bureau not the piano. Jess is not impressed nor is her best friend Zoe, who declares it is hideous. Then Jess accidently discovers the bureau also hides a beautiful bottle, a flask, an item that changes colour and seems to contain a spirit. What does it mean. And why is her friendship with Zoe als
Elizabeth Hobson
I loved this quiet little book. Jess is dealing with the death of her grandmother at the same time her conjoined twin brothers are expected to arrive. As she struggles with her thoughts and emotions around these events, she finds a glass object hidden in a desk that might be connected to multiple people in her life. Just a tiny bit of magical realism graces this lovely book for middle schoolers. Perfect for a sensitive child.
Jul 14, 2013 Sarra rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
After Jessica's beloved Aunt Edie dies of old age, Jess finds that things aren't what they seem. Finding a flask in the drawer of the bureau, Jess finds that its connected to her baby brothers, conjoined twins Richie and Clem. Through a lot of character growth, Jess finds out that figuring out the connection isn't so easy without outside help.
Feb 03, 2013 Grace rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: childrens
I won this book for free in a Goodreads Giveaway.

Let me just start out by saying that is book is excellent. I completely identified with the sidewalk crack game, and the supernatural elements were completely believable. At first I disliked Zoe, but throughout the book she began to grow on me. Each of the characters felt real, and had enjoyable quirks. I would recommend this book.
Feb 14, 2013 Jessica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a great easy read! I know and have meet people that's are as sensitive to the world as Jess is. A beautiful story of hope and wonder in the world. Written perfectly from a child's point of view but with the compassion of an old soul. Hmmmm, old souls....... Beautiful!
Apr 12, 2012 Tjala rated it really liked it
Recommended to Tjala by: Michelle
Another beautiful book from Nicky Singer, tackling different issues in a family and combining moments that made me laugh out loud and ones that made me sob. beautifully composed and just as good as Doll by Nicky Singer
Mz. Diana Gagliardi
Thought provoking with a main character who allows her heart to lead her head. Discussions of science and philosophey, loving-kindness, between places and new beginnings... somewhat supernatural but not in a hit you over the head kinda way...nice.
Aug 20, 2012 Emma rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

The thing I love about Nicky Singer is that she (he?!) makes the completely unbelievable believable. Another beautiful book.
Tabitha Munyaka
Sep 20, 2012 Tabitha Munyaka rated it it was amazing
i have read this book i like it.sometimes i take books without knowing wht is in it but i grow from the story.
Jun 09, 2013 Isla rated it it was amazing
Amazing bit of mystery love and kindness. It gets intense and nearly started crying its beautiful
Susannah Hills
Oct 31, 2012 Susannah Hills rated it really liked it
Is a great book
Apr 17, 2013 Molly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Still trying to figure this one out, but it was unique.
Dec 08, 2016 Sarah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

I thought this was a pretty good book. It was about a girl, Jess, who lost her father when she was younger. She now has a stepdad and her mother is pregnant with his babies. Jess used to always go to her aunts house and play the piano with her, but when her aunt dies she asks to keep the piano, but instead she gets the old desk. When the desk arrives she wasn't very excited about it, but then she finds this glass flask in the back of the desk. She feels as if the flask is holding some
Sep 10, 2016 Cindy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, won-in-giveaway, arc
3.5 stars

I read an advanced uncorrected proof of Under Shifting Glass, which I won in a giveaway on LibraryThing.

When she's tired, which isn't often, we lie together on our backs in the half-moon swing and look up at the sky. Or I look at the sky, anyway. She looks upward, but what she sees I don't know, because people can look in the same place but not see the same things, can't they?" -pg. 51

"Then I wonder- what's more perfect? Two little boys separated, or two little boys joined? And I try to
Feb 21, 2013 Ashley rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
First off let me start by thanking Chronicle Books for this copy. Although I'm not sure if I would have bought this, it was not a bad book. I just felt this might appeal to someone under the age of 16.

Jessica is the main character of the book. She has just suffered a major loss; her Aunt Edie died. The one thing she wanted of her aunt, a piano, is denied her. Instead, she is given a bureau (a desk) that she has never seen before. But this bureau hides a good many secrets.

The story is told at a
As posted on Outside of a Dog:

Liminal space is a threshold, a between points no-man’s-land that wavers between being one thing and being another. In Nicky Singer’s Under Shifting Glass, Jess learns all about liminal space: the space between being a friend, and no longer friends; the space between family and not quite family; the space between a childhood and young adulthood; the space between living and dying. The novel begins with the death of Jess’ Great Aunt Edie and quickly moves into the pe
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Nicky has written four novels for adults, two books of non-fiction but most of her recent work is for young people. Her first children’s novel Feather Boy won the Blue Peter ‘Book of the Year’ Award, was adapted for TV (winning a BAFTA for Best Children’s Drama) and then commissioned by the National Theatre as a musical with lyrics by Don Black and music by Debbie Wiseman. In 2010 Nicky was asked ...more
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