STONE VOICE RISING by C. Lee Tocci

STONE VOICE RISING

Age Range: 10 - 13
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KIRKUS REVIEW

This pastiche of magic-larded fantasy and thriller wanders as laboriously as the seven foster kids at its center. Lilibut, abducted at age six, mysteriously resurfaces five years later at a foster home. When an earthquake conveniently dispatches their cruel caregivers, the seven, pursued by the evil Syxx’s helicoptering minions, travel hundreds of miles seeking the land of Kiva. Abetted by dreams and a reappearing raven, bird-communing Todd Hawker (get it?) leads the predictably multicultural band through a vaguely Southwest landscape. Lilibut, regenerating after years of experimental torture at a Syxx-directed medical institute, hears stones sing and chooses magical ones for her companions. She’s the unwitting Infant Stone Voice, whose ascendancy will assure the restoration of Earth’s balance. Keotak-se, a Stone Warrior who loses Lilibut to Syxx early on, also misses out when Todd bests the Beast in a literal cliffhanger. Dialogue is sparse and wooden, and the relentlessly omniscient narrative clumsily amalgamates quasi–Native American culture, faux–Gaia lore, an annihilative “Decreator” and even a race of Keebler-esque little people who cavort, speaking in trite rhyme (before the forest fire, anyway). (Fantasy. 10-13)

Pub Date: April 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-15-206292-7
Page count: 416pp
Publisher: Harcourt
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 2009