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Stones to Ashes (The Alchemists Academy #1)

3.54  ·  Rating Details  ·  182 Ratings  ·  25 Reviews
"What do you learn the Academy?" Wirt asks. "Magic? The responsibility to use your powers responsibly?" "Uh...something like that," his roommate Spencer said. "More like how to rule worlds."
Wirt, is used to being shuffled from foster home to foster home, adopting a devil-may-care attitude toward the world along the way. Now he s in a school he can't escape, lear
Nook, 225 pages
Published July 29th 2011 by (first published January 7th 2011)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,983)
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Lisa  (Bookworm Lisa)
Wirt is a challenging young man. He has a disconnect between his brain and his mouth, there is not filter. He says things that get him in trouble. He is an orphan and moves from foster home to foster home.

Our introduction to Wirt happens as he is being chased by bullies. His mouth worked faster than his brain once again. He is about to be pummelled when he wishes he were somewhere else. His wish was granted, sort of, he finds himself on the doorstep of Alchemist Academy.

His sudden appearance has
Mar 14, 2013 Val rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
From the start, this book reminded me of Harry Potter. The main character, an orphan named Wirt, mysteriously winds up at the Alchemists Academy. His arrival is a mystery, as the school is highly sought-after by students from many worlds and time periods and is highly competitive and even political: People don’t just “show up.” Still, the whole misfit-arriving-at-a-wizard-school smacked of Harry Potter. The author does try to distance herself from a Harry Potter connection: in one scene, the cha ...more
Mary (BookHounds)

Foster kid, Wirt inadvertently discovers he has magical ability when he is threatened by three boys with bodily harm and escapes when he disappears. The only problem is that he doesn't really believe in magic, so when he lands in a giant tree house that is home to a magical academy. The academy trains future magicians to help the rulers of all hundreds of worlds that overlap. There he is admitted to the academy on scholarship and soon makes a home among the students. He makes
Myra (Pieces of Whimsy)
Review first published on my blog, Pieces of Whimsy

I thought this book was really good, there were a few mistakes here and there but overall this book was a really enjoyable read.

The book starts off with the main character, Wirt, being chased by three boys. He gets backed into a corner and starts to panic wishing that he was somewhere else and then, he is. Wirt ends up in a magical school called the Alchemists Academy and is stuck there until he can figure out a way to get home.

The Academy is in
This and other reviews can be found on my blog @

I decided to do the blog tour mainly because of the author. I love Kailin Gow's books. I find that she writes really awesome romance stories. But it turns out the Alchemist Academy Series wasn't as romantic as I thought, but the little romance between Wirt and Alana was enough to satisfy my hunger a little.

Stones to Ashes started off with Wirt living on Earth, living with yet another new set of foster parents.
Dec 12, 2012 Lillie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
See the full review at: Read My Mind

STONES TO ASHES was actually a fairly low-key YA fantasy, involving magical elements. The book started out with the hero, Wirt, in a world of trouble, but it didn't rely upon frenetic action sequences and constant danger to keep the reader engaged. In fact, there could be a parallel to the HARRY POTTER series drawn here. Wirt discovers a hidden world where students attend a school that teaches them the ins and outs of magic- or alchemy, as it's called here.
Jan 14, 2013 Katie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is such a fun adventurous read and highly addictive. The author has created a fantastic series from a male’s perspective, which is quite different for me. The easy flow of the story and the highly enjoyable adventure’s that Wirt takes makes for one great read.

Wirt is a typical teenager generally speaking, orphaned and pushed from one foster house to another and from one school to another. Forever finding trouble and on afternoon while walking around his new town, Wirt finds some thugs, afte
Michelle Book Briefs
I love magic books. Mostly because there is just so much you can do with them. Stones to Ashes is a promising start to the Alchemists Academy series. I found it to be a younger YA book than most I have read lately. The romance was very minimal (so far, at least) and it was very PG. This book was more focused on the adventure, or quest as they called it.

The book revolves around a tree. Yes, you read that right. The academy is IN a beyond enormous TREE. How is that for unique??! The description of
Dec 03, 2012 Tammy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When the book opens we are introduced to our main character, Wirt (such a cool name). He is being shuffled from foster home to foster home and currently running from bullies because he just can't keep his mouth shut. He is suddenly transported into a magical world with magical powers he never realized he had.

Stranded in this magical place, Wirt, soon enters the Alchemist Academy to prefect his craft. It is like a boarding school for magicians. He meets some interesting people and even some cute
Lord Nouda
Apr 01, 2012 Lord Nouda rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: epic-fail, reviewed

Wirt is used to being shuffled from foster home to foster home, adopting a devil-may-care attitude toward the world along the way. Now he's in a school he can't escape, learning to develop his latent magical abilities that can save his world --or destroy it.

For some weird reason this book reminded me of the The Magicians by Lev Grossman. In this book, the main character...Wirt (I keep forgetting his name for some reason), suddenly emits a glowing light and transports himself to another wor
Sher A. Hart
Dec 29, 2012 Sher A. Hart rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting wizard academy story partly because it didn't follow the Harry Potter route. What if evil wizards controlled the school located somewhere far away from Earth, and the main character doesn't know how he got there, let alone how to get back home? That's where young Wirt finds himself. With a chip on his shoulder from being bounced around between foster homes, he might not have the social skills necessary to survive his first interview. If he does, will his budding power help him l ...more
Dec 27, 2012 Adriane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-tour
I’ve had a couple of Kaitlin Gow books on my TBR pile for a while. I was excited when these two came across as options to be read! I read these last night and they were really, really good!

The Alchemist Academy is such a great world that Gow has created. It is set in a boarding school world like Harry Potter, but that is where the similarities end! There is never ending action in the tree where the Academy lives. Things are always happening and life is NEVER dull. Wirt is the character who we fo
Sarah (Head Stuck In A Book)
The Alchemist's Academy is another winning series for Kailin Gow.

Every series that I've read so far has such different characters and storylines, and I always love delving into a new book to see what new and exciting world Kailin has come up with.

This time we have Wirt (a very unique name and a nice change having a male protagonist) who discover's he has magical abilities after he 'accidentally' transports himsefl to a school for magical children, but don't mistake this for a Harry Potter knock-
Okay. The author says she is writing this to be used for class discussions but the grammar issues really are bad, and I'm not sold on the story - maybe if the brief was "re-write Harry Potter so that it is shorter, with some other references to add a bit of spice, add in lots of grammatical errors and words being used wrongly for the class to stumble over, and give the main character from our world a stupid name, and the other main characters from other worlds normal-sounding names" then, well, ...more
Domanika Williams
I really actually enjoyed this book, I tend to stray away from Alchemist or wizard booms but this was a great read, onto to the second book I go
Brandy Corona
Dec 04, 2012 Brandy Corona rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really liked this story. It was interesting from the start and Wirt is an irresistible character to fall in love with. The other characters are great as well! The in depth personalities that Kailin gives each one is awesome!

I liked the flow of the story and how easy it was to get lost in the magical telling of the school in a tree! I would recommend this book to everyone!
Jul 09, 2015 Olivia rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook, ya-lit
I had a really hard time getting into this one. I know part of it was the main guy's name, Wirt. Another part was that it was a lot like Harry Potter but not nearly as charming or captivating. There were parts I liked but overall this was very "meh" for me. I really wished that some parts had been fleshed out more.
Feb 24, 2013 Jessie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I gave this author three stars for effort. She has a lot of potential, but she needs years more of writing practice and a good editor giving her some guidance. The characters and plot could have been good, but there was too much showing and over explaining, and the whole thing ended up feeling shallow and rushed.
Feb 26, 2013 Damgaard78 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
Interesting book for the young adult crowd. Some ideas akin to what is in Harry Potter.

One fallback is that each book is rather short, could have wished a bit longer books. But for a short good entertainment it works well.
Inspired Kathy
I'm setting up a blog tour & book blast for this series - Bloggers wanted: http://bookblastpromotions.blogspot.c...
Candy Johansen
Sep 04, 2011 Candy Johansen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good book, although it's not the best written book...the writing is a little stilted in spots. I still enjoyed it, and can't wait to read the next one.
Jul 02, 2012 Jennifer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book and the 2nd in the series. Only it is too bad that we have to wait so long for the next release.
Nov 06, 2011 Jennifer rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Needs a better editor.
Mar 17, 2013 Prami rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013
2 stars
Mar 19, 2013 Maryam rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
loved it
Leah marked it as to-read
Aug 14, 2016
Nina Litsou
Nina Litsou marked it as to-read
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FES marked it as to-read
Aug 13, 2016
Kayla Furnia
Kayla Furnia marked it as to-read
Aug 09, 2016
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Kailin Gow was called an "innovating author" and an "Author as Influencer" by Goodreads executives at Book Expo America 2014 in their speech.

In 2015, Kailin Gow was announced as one of Cindy Crawford's Beauties, who is beautiful on the inside as well as the outside, along with Deborah Messing and Gabrielle Union.

She was called "a successful author who knows how to balance being an author and lif
More about Kailin Gow...

Other Books in the Series

The Alchemists Academy (3 books)
  • Elemental Explosions (The Alchemists Academy, #2)
  • The Quantum Games (The Alchemists Academy, #3)

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