Fantasy Book Reviews

FANTASY
Released: Dec. 27, 2011

"An exciting and inspirational must-read that begs a sequel. (Paranormal romance. 12 & up)"
High-school temptresses wield magic to emancipate a lovelorn girl from her pain in this finely wrought tale. Read full book review >
CROSSED by Ally Condie
FANTASY
Released: Nov. 1, 2011

"Both rich and easy to digest, this will leave fans hungry for the third book. (Science fiction/romance. 13 & up)"
Cassia and Ky grapple with secrets, wilderness and the tumultuous meanings of love in the second installment of this addictive, layered dystopic trilogy. Read full book review >

THE ANNOTATED PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH by Norton Juster
FANTASY
Released: Oct. 25, 2011

"A timeless tribute to learning as play, much enriched with background on even the (seemingly) throwaway lines and puns. (Literary criticism. 10-12, adult)"
Still ferrying dazzled readers to Dictionopolis and beyond 50 years after his first appearance, young Milo is accompanied this time through by encyclopedic commentary from our generation's leading (and most readable) expert on the history of children's literature and publishing. Read full book review >
THE SCORPIO RACES by Maggie Stiefvater
ANIMALS
Released: Oct. 18, 2011

"Masterful. Like nothing else out there now. (Fantasy. 13-18)"
The bestselling author of Shiver (2009) and Linger (2010) turns the legend of the water horse into a taut, chilling, romantic adventure. Read full book review >
STEAMPUNK! by Kelly Link
FANTASY
Released: Oct. 1, 2011

"An excellent collection, full of unexpected delights. (introduction, author biographies) (Anthology. 12 & up)"
You can't have steampunk without steam (and maybe some gears), but in the hands of a stellar cast of authors, everything else is open to interpretation. Read full book review >

BREADCRUMBS by Anne Ursu
FANTASY
Released: Sept. 27, 2011

"More than just a good story, this will appeal to lovers of Cornelia Funke as well as Andersen. (Fantasy. 8-12)"
In this contemporary version of The Snow Queen, fifth-grader Hazel embarks on a memorable journey into the Minnesota woods to find her best friend Jack, who vanishes after a shard of glass pierces his eye. Read full book review >
A MONSTER CALLS by Patrick Ness
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: Sept. 27, 2011

"A poignant tribute to the life and talent of Siobhan Dowd and an astonishing exploration of fear. (Fiction. 11-14)"
From a premise left by author Siobhan Dowd before her untimely death, Ness has crafted a nuanced tale that draws on elements of classic horror stories to delve into the terrifying terrain of loss. Read full book review >
THE ISLE OF BLOOD by Rick Yancey
FANTASY
Released: Sept. 13, 2011

"He deftly blurs lines between science and the supernatural, and what results is a long, dark-night-of-the-soul journey for both Will Henry and Pellinore that is certain to turn the hearts and the stomachs of every reader who dares open its pages. (Horror. 14 & up)
"
When an obscure, slimy, flesh-colored pouch is delivered to Pellinore Warthrop's door and renders the deliverer into a bloody, pulpy zombie-like mess, the Monstrumologist has but one course of action open to him. Read full book review >
WITCHLANDERS by Lena Coakley
FANTASY
Released: Aug. 30, 2011

"The rich language will enthrall female and male readers alike—if the latter can look past the extremely feminine cover. (Fantasy. 12 & up)"
Exquisite storytelling plus atmospheric worldbuilding equals one stunning teen debut. Read full book review >
THE GRAY WOLF THRONE by Cinda Williams Chima
FANTASY
Released: Aug. 30, 2011

"Indispensible for those already committed to the series; those who aren't should go back to the beginning and start. (Fantasy. 12 & up)"
Secrets are revealed, oaths sworn, alliances forged and hearts broken in the third volume of this epic fantasy tetralogy. Read full book review >
THE MOSTLY TRUE STORY OF JACK by Kelly  Barnhill
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: Aug. 2, 2011

"An enticing read that is certain to keep both the hero and audience guessing at every carefully plotted reveal. (Fantasy. 9-12)"
A truly splendid amalgamation of mystery, magic and creeping horror will spellbind the middle-grade set. Read full book review >
MISFIT by Jon Skovron
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: Aug. 1, 2011

"Thoughtful, scary and captivating. (Urban fantasy. 14 & up)"
In an impeccably paced and unusually profound urban-fantasy novel, 16-year-old half-demon Catholic-school student Jael Thompson comes into her powers, explores her heritage and battles a tyrannical Hell beast. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Brad Parks
author of SAY NOTHING
March 7, 2017

In Brad Parks’ new thriller Say Nothing, judge Scott Sampson doesn’t brag about having a perfect life, but the evidence is clear: a prestigious job. A beloved family. On an ordinary Wednesday afternoon, he is about to pick up his six-year-old twins to go swimming when his wife, Alison, texts him that she’ll get the kids from school instead. It’s not until she gets home later that Scott realizes she doesn’t have the children. And she never sent the text. Then the phone rings, and every parent’s most chilling nightmare begins. A man has stolen Sam and Emma. For Scott and Alison, the kidnapper’s call is only the beginning of a twisting, gut-churning ordeal of blackmail, deceit, and terror; a high-profile trial like none the judge or his wife has ever experienced. Their marriage falters. Suspicions and long-buried jealousies rise to the surface. Fractures appear. Lies are told. “The nerve-shredding never lets up for a minute as Parks picks you up by the scruff of the neck, shakes you vigorously, and repeats over and over again till a climax so harrowing that you’ll be shaking with gratitude that it’s finally over,” our critic writes in a starred review. View video >