Appropriately enough, lots of fun on multiple levels.

READ REVIEW

WHILE YOU WERE GONE

From the Duplexity series , Vol. 2

The other half of the parallel-universe story begun in Now That You’re Here (2014).

No recap’s given, as this story has the same starting point as the previous novel, just different narrators: the other Danny, who wakes up in a different dimension, and the Eevee native to it. This Eevee’s a passionate artist instead of an academic; the daughter of the powerful governor, she nevertheless chafes against the widespread political censorship of art. Despite the big changes between worlds (this Phoenix is on the coast), the biggest shock for Danny is discovering that in this dimension his parents are alive. This Danny and Eevee are connected by fate and by this universe’s Warren, still a supergenius and Eevee’s friend but also with secret ties to various entities, including the anti-government group the other Danny was involved in prior to the explosion. Danny and Eevee have off-the-charts chemistry. The nonromantic storylines—Eevee’s competition for a shot at a foreign art school placement and Danny’s quick immersion in his parallel self’s light rebellion via graffiti—allow the characters to develop outside of their romance. The overarching plot involves fighting the increasingly dystopian society’s latest and most-intrusive-yet surveillance program, and it weaves seamlessly into the dimension hopping. The novel’s tense and exciting throughout, but the ending is far too abrupt and will leave readers demanding the next installment promptly.

Appropriately enough, lots of fun on multiple levels. (Science fiction. 12 & up)

Pub Date: Aug. 4, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-385-75392-0

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: May 12, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2015

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Busy, busy, busy…with portents of doom.

CHAIN OF GOLD

From the Last Hours series , Vol. 1

Clare’s (Ghosts of the Shadow Market, 2019, etc.) latest is set in the Shadowhunter world in the 20th century’s first decade (with frequent flashbacks to the previous one).

Teenage offspring of the Herondales, Carstairs, Fairchilds, and other angel-descended Nephilim continue their families’ demon-fighting ways amid a round of elegant London balls, soirees, salons, picnics, and romantic intrigues. James Herondale, 17-year-old son of Will and Tessa, finds himself and his “perfectly lethal dimple” hung up between two stunning new arrivals: Cordelia Carstairs, red-haired Persian/British wielder of a fabled magic sword, and Grace Blackthorn, an emotionally damaged but (literally, as the author unsubtly telegraphs) spellbinding friend from childhood. Meanwhile, a sudden outbreak of demonic attacks that leave more and more Shadowhunters felled by a mysterious slow poison plunges James and a cohort of allies into frantic searches for both a cause and an antidote. Ichor-splashed encounters with ravening boojums and even one of hell’s own princes ensue—all leading to final hints of a devastating scheme to destroy the Nephilim in which James himself is slated to play a central role. Characters have a range of skin tones, but ethnic diversity adds no texture to the portrayals; there is a lesbian cousin who wears traditionally male clothing and two young gay men (one tortured, the other less so).

Busy, busy, busy…with portents of doom. (Fantasy. 14-18)

Pub Date: March 3, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-4814-3187-3

Page Count: 624

Publisher: McElderry

Review Posted Online: Jan. 23, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2020

Did you like this book?

Skip this uninspired entry into the world of medieval love and court intrigue.

THE BETROTHED

From the Betrothed series , Vol. 1

In an imagined setting evoking medieval England, King Jameson of Coroa pursues Hollis Brite.

The independent teenager makes Jameson laugh, but she lacks the education and demeanor people expect in a queen. Her friend Delia Grace has more knowledge of history and languages but is shunned due to her illegitimate birth. Hollis gets caught up in a whirl of social activity, especially following an Isolten royal visit. There has been bad blood between the two countries, not fully explained here, and when an exiled Isolten family also comes to court, Jameson generously allows them to stay. Hollis relies on the family to teach her about Isolten customs and secretly falls in love with Silas, the oldest son, even though a relationship with him would mean relinquishing Jameson and the throne. When Hollis learns of political machinations that will affect her future in ways that she abhors, she faces a difficult decision. Romance readers will enjoy the usual descriptions of dresses, jewelry, young love, and discreet kisses, although many characters remain cardboard figures. While the violent climax may be upsetting, the book ends on a hopeful note. Themes related to immigration and young women’s taking charge of their lives don’t quite lift this awkwardly written volume above other royal romances. There are prejudicial references to Romani people, and whiteness is situated as the norm.

Skip this uninspired entry into the world of medieval love and court intrigue. (Historical romance. 13-16)

Pub Date: May 5, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-06-229163-9

Page Count: 320

Publisher: HarperTeen

Review Posted Online: Feb. 5, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2020

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more