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The Rules of Magic

(Practical Magic #2)

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  42,063 ratings  ·  5,342 reviews
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 r
Kindle Edition, 369 pages
Published October 10th 2017 by Simon & Schuster
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Simon & Schuster Goodreads While The Rules of Magic is a prequel, you certainly do not need to read Practical Magic first. The Rules of Magic works beautiful as a stand-alone!…moreWhile The Rules of Magic is a prequel, you certainly do not need to read Practical Magic first. The Rules of Magic works beautiful as a stand-alone! You'll find some characters you know and love from watching the movie over and over (if you're like me, at least once a year!)--but you'll also find new characters to fall in love with in the pages of this novel. I hope you enjoy reading The Rules of Magic, and I hope you'll let us know what you think once you do!

Savannah It's actually mentioned in Practical Magic that the Owens women always keep their last name, even when they marry. So it's kind of a call back to the…moreIt's actually mentioned in Practical Magic that the Owens women always keep their last name, even when they marry. So it's kind of a call back to the original book.(less)

Community Reviews

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3.97  · 
Rating details
 ·  42,063 ratings  ·  5,342 reviews

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Elyse Walters
Jul 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing

"The Rules of Magic", is such a wonderful world to visit.
Most people avoided the Owens family believing any entanglement with them would taint not only their present but their future as well.
It was said that some family members could place a single horse hair into a pan of water and turn it into a snake.
Yikes... that might scare me away from them too! Ha!

But -- oh how I loved this family who came from a long line of witches as far back as the year 1620 when Maria Owens wa
Angela M
Sep 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing

If you don't read this book because you don't believe in witches or in magic, you would truly be missing out on a wonderful story that is about so much more. If you don't read this book because you haven't read Practical Magic, the book to which this is a prequel, you'd be missing out . I haven't read Practical Magic (although I intend to now), but yet I loved so much about this book . It is not just a story of spells and potions and special powers. It is a story of family, of love, a story that
Larry H
Aug 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley

How much did I love this book? I cannot even count the ways.

Franny, Bridget (Jet), and Vincent Owens are siblings growing up in New York City in the late 1950s and early 1960s, raised by no-nonsense parents who discourage their children from exploring their uniqueness. Their mother Susanna knows that her children are different—headstrong Franny can talk to birds, beautiful Jet can read people's thoughts, and charismatic Vincent has been charming people to him since birth, and he uses that to hi
Will Byrnes
Nov 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It was clear from the start that they were not like other children, therefore Susanna felt she had no choice but to set down rules. No walking in the moonlight, no Ouija boards, no candles, no red shoes, no wearing black, no going shoeless, no amulets, no night-blooming flowers, no reading novels about magic, no cats, no crows, and no venturing below Fourteenth Street. Yet no matter how Susanna tried to enforce these rules, the children continued to thwart her.
Do you ever read a wonderful book
Jan 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman is a 2017 is a Simon & Schuster publication.

Those eccentric aunts from “Practical Magic”? Just what is their backstory anyway? I was so excited when I heard this book was going to be a prequel to ‘Practical Magic’. Finally, we learn the history behind the infamous curse that plagues the Owens women and discover the legacy behind the love potions and herbs, and the complicated emotions swirling around Frances and Jet.

I usually try to reserve my enthusiasm
Aug 13, 2017 rated it did not like it
Woo-woo here, woo-woo there. Here a witch, there a witch, everywhere a witch witch....

Sadly, I couldn't finish this one. I never should have requested it, knowing that magical realism isn't my thing. Reading it has been torture, so I'm stopping right now, a quarter of the way through. Life is too short for me to spend hours reading something I hate. Reading fiction must be fun or intriguing--otherwise, what's the point?

My fault. I let myself get seduced by reviews when I knew full well that witc
Susanne  Strong
5 Crazy, Dazzling & Reckless Stars!

"The Rules of Magic" is a Mystical, Whimsical, Fantastical and Heartbreaking Novel about the Owen family. Siblings, Franny, Jet and Vincent, who are given simple, yet strange rules by their mother Susanna: no walking in moonlight, no wearing black, no wearing red shoes, no cats or crows, no candles and no reading books about magic. Oh.. and the biggest rule? No falling in love.
They are provided no explanation. None. They obey.. though they don't know why
Rating 4.5 (Release date 10-10-17)

Magical! Enough said, end review. Seriously, I loved this book. I got an email one day asking if I was wanted to read this new book by Alice Hoffman. I didn't even think, I just replied YES!

The Rules of Magic is the 'prequel' to Hoffman's huge selling book and movie, Practical Magic. Even though this is a prequel, I will say this.....You DO NOT have to read Practical Magic before reading this one. In Practical Magic, the main characters had two aunts that took c
The Rules of Magic was the October 2017 fiction group read in the goodreads group reading for pleasure. After a two month delay, my library had the book for me, and I was all too happy to read it before the end of the year. Last month, I read Isabel Allende's new book and it left a sour taste in my mouth because it was devoid of her magical realism which I love. I had been searching for a book full of magical realism to read, and The Rules of Magic, while more about actual magic than magical rea ...more
Nov 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
✨✨5 wonderfully witching stars! With the perfect touch of magic✨✨

This was a five star Traveling Sister Read! That’s why I bumped my rating up to the full five stars! I figured a book that had inspired such an amazing discussion was more than worthy of a five star rating! So thank you ladies for making this book even more special for me!

Not going to lie at the beginning of this book I was slightly disappointed, I was waiting for all this spellcasting and broomstick riding, but that didn’t happen.

I'll tell you about the magic, and it'll free your soul
But it's like trying to tell a stranger 'bout rock and roll

If you believe in magic, come along with me
We'll dance until morning 'til there's just you and me
And maybe, if the music is right
I'll meet you tomorrow, sort of late at night
And we'll go dancing, baby, then you'll see
How the magic's in the music and the music's in me

Yeah, do you believe in magic

Yeah, believe in the magic of a young girl's soul
Believe in the magic
Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
5 (un)magical, but magical anyway (magical in the best way) stars to The Rules of Magic ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

The Rules of Magic was not as full of magic as I expected it to be. At times, when discussing this with my friends, I was asking for more magic! What I found was that the real magic was in the life happenings of these notable characters and not in the magic itself. For the magic lovers, there was some. I would say it took the backseat in this story, which ended up working beautifully.

Alice Hoffman
Aug 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
It seems to be a hit and miss with me and Hoffman. I loved The Dovekeepers and The Story Sisters but not so much with The Marriage of Opposites. This one didn't grab me from under the table at the start. I think it's the magic thing- it's difficult for me to suspend belief, BUT, once I finally let go of that conception, the story was at last able to enter into a more fascinating and interesting realm for me.
Because let's face it, Hoffman's skill is in her descriptive writing - successfully trans
Diane S ☔
Apr 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
It has been many, many years since I read Practical Magic, or seen the movie. I do remember loving it, loving the sisters and the magic. So here the Owen sisters return, as young witches, parents still alive, and with the added twist of their younger brother Victor. Of course they soon notice how different they are, exploring their talents in various ways until a horrible tragedy threatens to derail everything.

Loved it, this book was just what I needed after reading This Way for the Gas, Ladies
Norma * Traveling Sister
5 brilliant stars for this magically written story!
I absolutely loved everything about this book and savoured every single word that was written.  
THE RULES OF MAGIC by ALICE HOFFMAN was a fantastic, endearing, and a spellbinding novel that was an absolute joy to read.  It was a touching, heartbreaking, heartwarming, and a powerful story with a strong message of love and courage within the pages of this book.  I absolutely love a little bit of magical realism within my books but I think there
Nov 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Do as you will, but harm no one.
What you give will be returned to you threefold.
Fall in love whenever you can.

Rules of Magic or Rules for Life? A heartbreaking journey into a family's history with lessons about what it means to be human.

I expected a book with magic in the title, which also figured in its predecessor’s title, to have a whole lot of conjuring, spells and hocus pocus, so I wasn’t quite entranced when this turned out not to be the case. That along with too much exposition made for a
Nov 05, 2017 rated it it was ok

In life and in literature, witches often get a bad rap and Alice Hoffman tried to change that with this book.

In the heart of the story lies Owens siblings - Franny, Jet and Vincent - who are witches/wizards and suffer from a generation long family curse that entails any person who falls in love with them will die.

They cope with high-school mean girls, apply to college, play music and oh yes, can hear each other’s thoughts, move furniture with their minds and are unable to sink in water. But
Oct 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley

Three siblings grow up knowing they are different than others. Their mother tries to keep their heritage hidden from them. But “what is meant to be is bound to happen, whether or not you approve.” In June, 1960, an invitation arrives and the teenagers take off to stay with their great aunt Isabelle in Massachusetts.

Every book of Alice Hoffman’s is different. The only thing in common is the wonderful writing. This book is described as a prequel to Practical Magic, which I haven't read. And it's
Oct 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library-book
Fantastic + magical = FANTASTICAL!!!

The magic of this book RULES !!!

What may surprise many of you is that I normally would not choose to read a book about witches and/or magic. But, seriously who didn't love 'Practical Magic' in book form &/or the movie? I know I did. I'll admit I was hesitant to to give this a try for fear it wouldn't live up to the hype. Not to mention, this is the prequel to 'Practical Magic' after all these years. How will the author pull this off? Let me just say, t
Oct 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’ll give this 4 Stars. I really like these kinds of books, they are a nice change from the norm.
I have never read Practical Magic, which this book is the prequel to, but I plan to.
This is the story of three siblings Franny, Jett, and Victor who have the “sight”. We meet them as teenagers and they come to stay with their Aunt Isabel who also has the magic as does their own mother.
They learn some things staying with the aunt, and among those things is that love for them is cursed, that if they f
Jul 14, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Barely 3 stars.

I knew there was a chance The Rules of Magic wasn’t for me and unfortunately I was right. But I wanted to give it a try because I’ve liked other books by Hoffman and because of a few enthusiastic reviews by GR friends. The story focuses on three siblings — Franny, Jet and Vincent — who are born into a family of witches in the 1950s in Manhattan. They live with a curse that makes love dangerous for those they love. What unfolds is a long melancholic saga about living on the margins
Brenda - Traveling Sister
Nov 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Traveling Sisters review by Brenda with Norma, Jennifer, JanB, Victoria, Berit, Dana, Marialyce and Nikki

I read The Rules of Magic with eight of my Traveling Sisters and we all found this to be a very magical reading experience.

The Rules of Magic is a spellbinding, heartfelt and heartbreaking, insightful, sad and beautiful story that was so full of emotion for all of us. The story started off a little rocky for some of us at first as we were getting to know the Owens siblings. A lot was being t
Justin Tate
Apr 16, 2018 rated it it was ok
A witchy romantic comedy that’s not particularly supernatural, romantic, or funny. More intriguing than Practical Magic but that’s not saying much. Maybe I’m not the right audience for these books.
Sandy *The world could end while I was reading and I would never notice*
EXCERPT: 'Once upon a time, before the whole world changed, it was possible to run away from home, disguise who you were, and fit into polite society. The children's mother had done just that.'

THE BLURB: 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
Chelsea (chelseadolling reads)
Excuse me while I cry my eyes out for the rest of the day 😭
Nov 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
5 shining ⭐s for this magical story!

Do as you will, but harm no one.
What you give will be returned to you threefold.
Fall in love whenever you can."
~ from the Grimoire...”on the first page were the rules of magic.”

The Rules of Magic is about so much more than magic ~ it's about love and whether we choose courage or caution. The book is so beautifully written that I didn't skip over one word. Alice Hoffman creates strong, eclectic characters, weaving in magic, and I wanted to savor it all. Like m
Oct 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
The Rules of Magic, the prequel to Alice Hoffman's popular Practical Magic series, takes the reader back to the 1960s. Susanna Owens is raising her three difficult children, Franny, Bridget and Vincent, in Manhattan and trying to keep them from their natural instincts as much as possible.

She has 'rules' that she hopes will accomplish this: No walking in the moonlight; no red shoes; no wearing black; no cats; no crows; no candles; no books about magic. And never, ever, fall in love. For, in 1620
Aug 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I'm not usually a fan of Alice Hoffman but this is, well, magical.
Korrina  (OwlCrate)
Jan 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
That was a lovely, lovely book.
Oct 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I just absolutely loved this book. It made me cry and I do think that when and if someone's words in a book can bring out emotions, that book becomes something special in your heart and mind. This book will make me reflect for quite some time about life's twist and turns and the avenues we walk upon all in the name of love.

In this prequel to Practical Magic, we meet the young Owens sisters and their brother, Vincent. Each of them are tagged with being Owens and of course being magical. They eac
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Alice Hoffman is the author of more than thirty works of fiction, including The Rules of Magic, The Marriage of Opposites, Practical Magic, The Red Garden, the Oprah’s Book Club selection Here on Earth, The Museum of Extraordinary Things, and The Dovekeepers. She lives near Boston.

Other books in the series

Practical Magic (2 books)
  • Practical Magic (Practical Magic)
“Other people’s judgments were meaningless unless you allowed them to mean something.” 46 likes
“Know that the only remedy for love is to love more.” 42 likes
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