Reading/Interest Level: Intermediate, Young Adult
Author: Kathryn Erskine
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Julian is what he calls a Universe Sensor, or ‘Uni-Sensor.’ He can see things in people that most others wouldn't be able to find. When his stressed family moves to Maine to run a bed & breakfast, Julian uses his vast knowledge of time and space to try and reconnect with his older sister, Pookie. When things seem like they can't get any worse, Mr. X, the family's next door neighbor, sues the family for blocking the view of the nearby lake. Julian decides to take matters into his own hands and visit Mr. X. Julian discovers that Mr. X is really in Florida, and that he is also a Uni-Sensor projecting his image to Julian. Because of their new special connection, Julian feels that Mr. X is having a heart attack, and saves him by calling 911. Mr. X and Julian finally meet in person, and Julian's family reunited.
The Incredible Magic of Being is truly a compelling tale of helping others, finding connections, and becoming the small everyday hero. It shows that even the slightest understanding of the universe and its magic can lead to bigger things. Julian’s example of using his own knowledge of the universe shows others that anyone who may seem ‘unextraordinary’ (according to Pookie) can achieve the peace in life that they want. This is a must-read for people who may be going through family trials. It shows how everything can become better in the future, and to look towards the stars as a reminder that not everyone is perfect. This is also a good book for those who enjoy scientific subjects, because they will be able to connect with Julian as he explains how incredible being a person connected with the universe can be. With the universe’s power and majesty in mind, anyone can set out to feel it, change other’s lives, and become a better person.