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Benjamin Piff und die Magie der Wünsche (The Misadventures of Benjamin Bartholomew Piff #1)

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3.65  ·  Rating Details ·  747 Ratings  ·  135 Reviews
Orphaned Benjamin Bartholomew Piff closed his eyes, blew out the candle, and wished with all his might. Soon after, sirens wailed all over the Wishworks Factory-Ben had followed every rule of birthday wishing to a T and had made the most dangerous wish of all...a wish for unlimited wishes.
Ben is delighted with his clever wish, until he learns that he has disrupted the fra
...more
Hardcover, 282 pages
Published January 2008 by Loewe (first published April 5th 2007)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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C
Feb 18, 2015 C rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The best thing about this book was the title. The next best thing was how it started out. And then it just kept going downhill from there. I can't quite put my finger on why it failed to be engaging, but despite all the magic, the magic just wasn't there. While the basic structure and premise were okay, the execution offered nothing new, and the whole story seemed to be packed in a too-small package. (This is dangerously close to the attitude of it's so bad and there's so little of it, but there ...more
Cristi-Lael
Jan 23, 2016 Cristi-Lael rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: childrens, dnf
Neither myself nor the girls were really enjoying this , so we talked about it and decided to DNF it. It's possible our apathy stems from the fact that we tried to read it right after the amazing Kate DiCamillo book, but we still weren't feeling it. And life is just too short to read a bunch of books you don't like.
We may try it again at a later date, it my girls may try reading it on their own one day.
C.J. Milbrandt
While the story begins in classic Dickensian fashion—the downtrodden orphan, the horrible orphanage, and characters with names that both reveal and define their personalities—Lethcoe quickly takes an imaginative twist. The Wishworks exists to grant children's wishes, and young Benjamin Bartholomew Piff has just made a doozy of one.

Classic and whimsical. Gentle and good. I adored bowler-wearing Mr. Candlewick. The footnotes throughout the story are a hoot. A fun story for lower middlegrade reade
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Alex
Dec 07, 2008 Alex rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is about a boy, Ben, whose parents died in a plane crash. Now he is in an orphanage full of peopple who hate him. This is on his tenth birthday and he made his wish, unlimited wishes. To his surprise, his wish came true. There is a factory where wishes are made, and Ben's wish is over-loading the factory. The President of the factory has to find a way to make him stop wishing.
I connect this book to the series of unfortunate events. It connects because The main character(s) are both o
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Hamster
This book started out awesome. It was original, had a Charles Dicken's feel to it, and I loved the person reading it. But somewhere into the second CD it seemed the author lost his spark. (The main character suddenly seemed selfish and uninteresting, the fictional world took a turn for the absurd, and the story floundered and eventually sank.) My apathy toward the whole affair grew exponentially until I finally had to stop midway through the third CD. This entire book was recorded on THREE CDs. ...more
Chad
Jan 27, 2010 Chad rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved the premise of this book. The Wish Works factory was so clever and unique it propelled me through yet another story of a mistreated orphan. It was truly mind candy. I enjoyed this new world and all its familiar characters in a new setting (genies, fairies . . . etc). However, there were parts of the story that just didn't flow as well as I'd like. Perhaps the world was underdeveloped. There were details that though I didn’t hate, I found them less than enthralling (spider monkeys and the ...more
Ariane
Jun 26, 2009 Ariane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kind of like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, but with wishes rather than candy.
Filo
Apr 04, 2013 Filo rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kevin
Jul 08, 2008 Kevin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
As regular readers will know, I occasionally dip into children's and young adult fiction particularly fantasy. I find it is often imaginative and creative in a way that similar genres of "adult fiction" are not. And having been reading some more serious non-fiction, I decided to check out The Misadventures of Benjamin Bartholomew Piff. I had picked up the first volume, You Wish, at a library sale for a couple of bucks and decided to give it a read.

It was a quick and easy read, and entertaining i
...more
Daniel
There were moments in this book that I found clever and even fun, but overall this book was tepid, uninspired.

I bought this book because the premise seemed real interesting -- a young boy makes the granddaddy of all wishes -- that he have an infinite number of wishes -- and because he did everything just right in the making of the wish, the wish came true, and of course, when a wish like that comes true, it wreaks havoc on those granting the wishes.

So, a good idea...what went wrong?

First, there'
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Tom Franklin
this book starts off with the clichéd "once loved boy now living in a heartless orphanage" but then quickly moves to a very interesting, unique take on wishes and the practical magic that is necessary to make some wishes come true. in fact, the world of the WishWorks Factory was so compelling i was willing to let go of my initial feelings of suspicion at the main character's predicament.

then the WishWorks Factory bit went on for so long that i had all but stopped caring about the main character
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Maren
Aug 07, 2013 Maren rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I want to give it just a little more than three stars. I enjoyed it and plan on reading the series and recommending it to my kids. However, it wasn't completely original and at times was too simple. In fact, after the first couple chapters I thought it was a complete rip-off/mash-up of Harry Potter and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (although it did improve as it went on). Poor orphan boy mistreated by caregivers (named Pinch and Roach of course), but then he stumbles upon a "wish" (golden ti ...more
Alexis.L  7
The book You Wish by Jason Lethcoe, is about a little boy in an orphanage named Benjerman, he is mistreated in this orphanage. The master makes him work his butt off if he does just like a tiny thing wrong. Witch is not fair! On his birthday he makes a wish, and this wish can not be said out loud, must be made with eyes closed, and you have to blow all the candles out in one breath, or else the wish doesn't count. But Benjerman wished for something risky... I did not really like this book, I was ...more
Kailey (BooksforMKs)
I liked this cute story about a boy who upsets the balance of nature by wishing for unlimited wishes.
I love the world-building of the Wishworks Factory and its employees. I love the magic system in place for this world! The plot is imaginative and fun!

Ben is a sweet character, and I loved his moments of bravery in the face of fear. He has a very independent spirit, but at the same time he is longing to belong somewhere.

Mr. Candlewick is also an interesting character, and I kept waiting for the
...more
Isabel
Jun 20, 2013 Isabel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book creates a whole new view for making your wishes come true. And it makes you think carefully about the next time you make a birthday wish! This book has creative and very cleaver ideas about how all the wishes one makes comes to life. I was skeptical at first when I saw the book and read the back of it when I was younger and didn't think of it too much back then. Only because when I reread the series four years later did I appreciate the book and its charm and I realized that though it ...more
Kyle Kimmal
Mar 10, 2008 Kyle Kimmal rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Brandee Shafer
I picked up this book because I liked the cover. I read it aloud to my daughters, who liked it well enough that I would've felt guilty for not finishing. It's pretty unoriginal, though. It's extremely reminiscent of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory with a Narnia or Lord of the Rings battle scene, some scary monkeys (maybe left over from the Wizard of Oz), and an orphan theme like a million other kids' chapter books. The cadence of the writing is jarring, too; I felt as though I were reading fro ...more
Connie D
Mar 03, 2016 Connie D rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 01st-in-series
Poor little Benjamin lives a miserable life in an orphanage, but when he makes a birthday wish for unlimited wishes it changes everything.

We are brought into the world of the Wishworks, a fantastical factory where people's wishes can be made true. Unfortunately, not far away is the factory that makes curses come true. I can't say much more without spoilers.

I found this a very clever children's book, one that I would have really enjoyed as a kid and one that I found sweet and amusing as an adult
...more
Amanda
Jul 23, 2013 Amanda rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The story seemed rushed. Some authors will add too much detail or ramble about topics, not Mr. Lethcoe. He just filled in the blanks as he went. Not a lot of details or explanations. The idea of the story is interesting. It just doesn't flow well. I had a hard time picturing what was going on most of the time. One of the most interesting things about the book is the notes at the bottom. He will mention something in the story, then make a note at the bottom with more detail. Such as when the auth ...more
Audra
Jan 15, 2010 Audra rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The idea behind this book had a fun twist, and in a search for new material for a bored eight-year-old who hadn't been dazzled by anything since Harry Potter, I gave it a shot. Unfortunately, the story is inspired by Harry Potter (evident by the leading character, an orphan, the magical setting, and even the names of people and places, such as Leo Snifflewiffle and Pinch's Home for Wayward Boys - both very Potter-esque names), but doesn't go any further. The story-telling is clunky, and the foot ...more
Celestia
My 9 yo daughter gave the five star rating and the following review:

"This is about a boy named Benjamin who lives in an orphanage. On his birthday he blows out his candles and makes a wish for unlimited wishes. This is bad because there's a place called Wishworks. When people make a wish for unlimited wishes then the other people who have wishes get their wishes taken away. So the president of wishworks whose name is Candlewick tells Ben that he has to unwish his wish but he can't because the pr
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Rach Arthur
'This is a fantasy book, and so we're going to go on a quest to retrieve some sort of powerful artifact from an evil villain, because if we don't he'll take over the world and suck all the joy and happiness out of it by making everyone watch Meryl Streep movies.'

Which is a shame, because I was really enjoying it up until that bit. The introduction of the Wishworks factory was great, and the idea of startled children falling off their disappearing unicorns was priceless. But as soon as the Unlimi
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Logan
Logan (almost 9) thoroughly enjoyed this audio book. The one odd thing about it is that the narrator is British, the orphanage is Dickensian, the characters have English, Scottish, or Irish accents, but half way through the book, you find out that it's all supposed to be taking place in modern day Los Angeles! Don't know why the author bothered to put that jolting fact in. Took us both right out of the story. We decided to ignore it and pretend it was in some English small town, which made a lot ...more
Brittany
Feb 14, 2011 Brittany rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Benjamin Bartholomew Piff is a bit simple for my taste. Ages 5-10 should read this book. Or maybe it's just me and I'm used to reading older books than this. It is based on a boy named Benjamin who lost his parents in a plane crash about a year ago and ahs now ended up in a orphanage. There is a place called wishworks and curseworks. On Ben's birthday he has a single piece of cake that he isn't suypposed to have. He blows the candles out and wishs for the most dangereous wish of all, a wish for ...more
Courtney
Apr 17, 2014 Courtney rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I found the book to marvelously imaginative, and as I was of a younger age when I read it, the magical properties of such a book were entrancing. Though our main character Benjamin is a character one could follow along with, I found many other characters to be of more interest to me than he. Particularly Candlewick. He was my favorite. The Wishworks Factory had me wishing such a thing was real, and for a few years after reading I continued to blow out my birthday cakes in such a way that ensured ...more
Martha Brown
This book read like a cross between Charlie & the Chocolate Factory, The Wizard of Oz, and maybe a little Harry Potter thrown in too. Although the premise of what happens if your birthday wish for unlimited wishes comes true is interesting, there almost seems to be too much happening in the story for you to really care about the characters. Lethcoe has worked with Disney on stotyboards, and my daughter & I agree that the descriptions have such a complete visualness to them that this stor ...more
Kylie
Oct 03, 2009 Kylie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Orphaned Benjamin Bartholomew Piff closed his eyes, blew out the candle, and wished with all of his might. Soon after, sirens wailed over the Wishworks Factory- Ben had followed every rule of the birthday wishing to a T and had made the most dangerous book of all...a wish for unlimited wishes.

Ben is delighted with his clever wish, until he learns that he has disrupted the fragile balance in the magical relm of wishes and cuses. Before long, Ben has been recruited by the Wishworks Factory preside
...more
Max  C.
May 10, 2010 Max C. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My 4th book review is on "The Misadventures Of Benjamin Piff". i chose this book because it is a very interesting book, and has all weird things in it. in the beginning, ben is a tortured orphan at the orphanage. he makes a spectacular wish, having unlimited wishes. it comes true, and he gets tangled up all in wishes and curses.
This was a great book, and it taght me how to make the perfect birthday wish. this is cool because not only the book is good, but it makes you think. are there really b
...more
Lisa  (Bookworm Lisa)
Nov 13, 2008 Lisa (Bookworm Lisa) rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 8 and up
At a recent book fair, some people asked me about this book. I decided it was time to read it.

This is a very fun book. Benjamin Batholomew Piff is an orphan. His parents were killed in an airplane crash about a year earlier. Benjamin currently resides in the Pinch's Home for Wayward Boys. Of course, he is mistreated there. On his birthday he makes a wish for unlimited wishes. Of course, he uses these wishes to even help out his fellow orphans, but it causes havoc at the Wishworks factory. The pl
...more
Martha
Jul 14, 2009 Martha rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kids-books
As a children's librarian, I read a lot of kids books. Read this one because it looked interesting and also to have additional books to recommend "if you liked Harry Potter". In reading it as an adult, I found it just OK, a bit weak, nothing special, borrowing heavily from other works including Harry Potter. However, I do know that what I like as an adult can be very different from what kids like. In reading the reviews on this site, the kids see, to like it and give it a good rating. On this sp ...more
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