Books by Nancy Springer

DRAWN INTO DARKNESS by Nancy Springer
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Nov. 5, 2013

"Springer (Dark Lie, 2012, etc.) has a flair for setting and characterization but not for integrating different plotlines and viewpoints. The result is a muddle of mawkishness, arch humor and gross details that drags on at least 50 pages too long."
A neighborly social call turns nightmare in the Florida panhandle. Read full book review >
DARK LIE by Nancy Springer
Released: Nov. 6, 2012

"A compulsive page turner that will have readers cheering on the decidedly unglamorous heroine, this thriller gets points for making the suburban mom-type the one who saves the day."
A woman's deepest secret threatens her life—and that of the daughter she barely knows. Read full book review >
MY SISTER'S STALKER by Nancy Springer
Released: May 1, 2012

"An undemanding read for fans of slim, fast-paced mysteries. (Thriller. 12 & up)"
Sixteen-year-old Rig is a reluctant hero when he seeks to discover who is obsessed enough with his sister to set up a website about her and possibly do something more dangerous. Read full book review >
POSSESSING JESSIE by Nancy Springer
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: April 15, 2010

"The strongest feature of this banal effort is its shortness; even the most reluctant of readers might be enticed to pick up a slender horror novel that delivers, in true Twlight Zone fashion, a chillingly nasty conclusion. (Horror. 12 & up)"
Strikingly shallow characters abound in this brief horror-fest. Read full book review >
SOMEBODY by Nancy Springer
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: April 1, 2009

"Like the classic The Face on the Milk Carton, this gripping short novel snags reluctant readers early on and keeps them emotionally invested until the final pages. (Thriller. 12-16)"
After years of strange moves and new names, 13-year-old Sherica finally Googles her real name, a name she hasn't heard since she was little, and learns she wasn't abandoned by her mom: Her dad abducted her, and they've been on the run ever since. Read full book review >
ANIMALS
Released: Sept. 1, 2008

"More please. (Mystery. 9-12)"
Although their own eccentricities are legendary, Mycroft and Sherlock Holmes fully expect their very much younger sister to take on the attributes of the stereotypical Victorian female. Read full book review >
THE CASE OF THE BIZARRE BOUQUETS by Nancy Springer
CHILDREN'S
Released: Jan. 1, 2008

"With precise characterization, fast pacing and keen observation, readers will be eager to learn what Enola will encounter next. (Historical fiction. 11-15)"
In this third Enola Holmes mystery, the younger, teenage sister of Sherlock Holmes is determined to find the missing Dr. Watson on her own by deciphering the clues in the bizarre bouquets sent to his wife. Read full book review >
CHILDREN'S
Released: Feb. 1, 2006

"A tasty appetizer, with every sign of further courses to come. (Fiction. 10-12)"
With gleeful panache, Springer introduces an innocent but capable young sleuth—the younger sister of Mycroft and Sherlock Holmes, no less—and takes her from wild English countryside to the soupy filth of Victorian London. Read full book review >
ADVENTURE
Released: June 1, 2005

"Even though not all of the storylines are fully realized, readers of the earlier titles will be satisfied. (Fiction. 9-12)"
Rowan, daughter of the woodwife Celandine and Robin Hood, vows to avenge her mother's death by slaying the four knights who burned her cottage and her within it. Read full book review >
WILD BOY by Nancy Springer
CHILDREN'S
Released: May 1, 2004

"Young readers, whether or not they've devoured the first three will enjoy this one. (Historical fiction. 8-12)"
This series by Springer is for a younger audience than her Arthurian one, and is written with perhaps less grace and wit. Read full book review >
LIONCLAW by Nancy Springer
ADVENTURE
Released: Sept. 1, 2002

"Lionel may save the day, but he alone cannot save this Lionclaw. (Fiction. 10-12)"
Springer revisits Sherwood Forest with her second chronicle of Rowan Hood (2001), although this time, Rowan and her father, Robin, are minor characters. Read full book review >
SEPARATE SISTERS by Nancy Springer
CHILDREN'S
Released: Dec. 1, 2001

"While the plot is obvious—a child acting out in hopes of drawing the parents together—the drama makes for utterly engaging reading. (Fiction. 11-14)"
Separated by divorce, two talented sisters come together in crisis. Read full book review >
ADVENTURE
Released: May 1, 2001

"A pleasant trifle. (Fiction. 9-13)"
The legendary archer inspires a worthy daughter in a lightweight fantasy. Read full book review >
I AM MORGAN LE FAY by Nancy Springer
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: March 1, 2001

"Perfect for the reader who would love, but is not quite ready for, The Mists of Avalon, this is magical storytelling, richly inspired and accomplished. (Fiction. YA)"
Another Camelot tale from the author of I Am Mordred brings the character of Morgan le Fay center stage and unfolds a story that is both new and steeped in the traditions of Arthurian legends. Read full book review >
PLUMAGE by Nancy Springer
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Dec. 1, 2000

"This prolific author (Fair Peril, 1996, etc. etc.) has a remarkably vivid style, but it's not enough to sustain a plot this thin. And passages written from the point of view of the lost parakeet are plain silly: 'At this singproud pairdance time, Kleet felt his loneliness most keenly.'"
A feminist tale about a middle-aged housewife who's abandoned by her philandering husband. Read full book review >
RIBBITING TALES by Nancy Springer
ANIMALS
Released: Oct. 1, 2000

"Invite readers to follow Bruce Coville's shape-changing superhero Dennis Juggarum in releasing their own inner frogs with this kickin' collection. (Short stories. 8-11)"
From Jane Yolen's froggy Pied Piper remake to "A Boy and His Frog," by David Lubar (designer of the Game-Boy version of "Frogger"), about a lad who releases his oversized pet into the local swamp after it eats a neighbor's Chihuahua, these eight new tales will make a big splash with middle readers. Read full book review >
I AM MORDRED by Nancy Springer
YOUNG ADULT
Released: April 13, 1998

"Springer places characters and internal conflicts, as strongly drawn as those found in Donna Jo Napoli's powerfully re-envisioned folk tales, into a world lit by flashes of wonder and humor, where politics and magic are brutal, inexorable forces. (Fiction. 12-15)"
In this expansion of a short story first published in Jane Yolen's Camelot (1995, not reviewed), Springer (Secret Star, 1997, etc.) sees Arthur's son more as a tragic hero than a villain, a teenager engaged in a desperate struggle to wiggle out from beneath the doom cast upon him before his birth. Read full book review >
SECRET STAR by Nancy Springer
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: May 19, 1997

"That twist and the melodrama in Tess's past overwhelm Springer's strength: her utterly convincing depictions of rural poverty and of struggling characters who retain their decency despite their harsh lives. (Fiction. 12+)"
From Springer (Looking for Jamie Bridger, 1995, etc.), a novel about Tess Rojahin Mathis, 14, who lives in an Appalachian shack with her disabled stepfather and has no memory of the first ten years of her life. Read full book review >
FAIR PERIL by Nancy Springer
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Nov. 1, 1996

"Witty, whimsical, and enormously appealing, if lacking the thoughtful underpinning that made Larque on the Wing (1994) such a delight."
While walking beside a Pennsylvania pond, storyteller Buffy Murphy—flabby, dowdy, fortysomething—encounters a talking frog: Prince Adamus d`Aurca, who was ensorcelled (``trans-frogrified'') a thousand years ago by the coldhearted Queen of Fair Peril (Faerie) for refusing to become her lover. Read full book review >
LOOKING FOR JAMIE BRIDGER by Nancy Springer
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: June 1, 1995

"A solid plot, strong characterizations, and the unexpected ending makes this a page-turner and a half. (Fiction. 12+)"
A suspenseful story about a feisty teen who insists on finding her roots in the face of adult duplicity and obstinacy. Read full book review >
TOUGHING IT by Nancy Springer
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: Sept. 19, 1994

"Slightly unfocused, but Springer's (Music of their Hooves, 1994, etc.) characters are well drawn and sympathetic. (Fiction. 12+)"
When Dillon is killed riding his bike to town, his younger brother Tuff loses the only person in the world who has ever cared for him. Read full book review >
MUSIC OF THEIR HOOVES by Nancy Springer
ANIMALS
Released: May 1, 1994

"Index. (Poetry. 8-12)"
Attractively laid out in picture book format with lively, realistic watercolors of horses in action, 20 poems with a pleasing diversity of settings and horse personalities. Read full book review >
THE BOY ON A BLACK HORSE by Nancy Springer
ANIMALS
Released: March 1, 1994

"Everything a young, horse-crazy romantic could wish: a book 12- and 13-year-olds will pass around until it's in tatters. (Fiction. 10-14)"
A mysterious Gypsy boy, Chav, who rides a black horse and exudes angst is befriended by Gray, who's still wracked by the loss of her entire family. Read full book review >
LARQUE ON THE WING by Nancy Springer
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: Feb. 1, 1994

"Charming, eccentric work where the bright, playful narrative enfolds a thoughtful and significant interior: irresistible."
Springer continues the marked improvement she showed in Apocalypse (1989) with this winning, precisely rendered foray into magic realism. Read full book review >
THE GREAT PONY HASSLE by Nancy Springer
ANIMALS
Released: Aug. 1, 1993

"Though the resolution is too good to be true (all four girls get horses), and the real issues of blending families are barely explored, young horse-story lovers will hop on eagerly for a quick ride. (Fiction. 7-11)"
Double trouble in a lightweight horse-story: When the mother of ten-year-old twins Staci and Toni marries the father of ten- year-old twins Stirling and Paisley, conflict is inevitable. Read full book review >
THE FRIENDSHIP SONG by Nancy Springer
FICTION
Released: March 1, 1992

"Though this complex, well-written story may have trouble finding its level—sixth-grader Harper is younger than most potential readers—the blend of realism with the supernatural and is well handled, and of course the rock-star element has appeal. (Fiction. 11+)"
An established author of adult fantasy, who has also written realistic stories and a well received fantasy for young people (Red Wizard, 1990), tells a tale inspired by the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice. Read full book review >
COLT by Nancy Springer
ANIMALS
Released: Oct. 1, 1991

"Sweet but not saccharine: a satisfying horse story with fine extra dimensions. (Fiction. 10-13)"
Colt, who has spina bifida, is introduced to riding in a special program for handicapped children. Read full book review >

When Shanterey Lucas' family moves into the duplex adjoining the Wetzel family's home, Jenny Wetzel is taken aback to discover that they're blacks—the first to move into this rural town near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Read full book review >