A high-stakes conclusion that satisfies.

ANOTHER JEKYLL, ANOTHER HYDE

From the Another… series , Vol. 3

One of the Marlowe students finds his internal conflicts becoming all-too external, Jekyll-and-Hyde style, in the conclusion to the Another… series.

Following his sudden break-up with Belle Faust in Another Faust (2009), Thomas Goodman-Brown hasn't been the same. Everyone thinks him constantly intoxicated (without justification; it's only occasional), but really he's reeling from the after-effects of the magic the Faust children used on him. A combination of his presumed guilt and the strain of his father's marriage to the missing Belle's governess Nicola Vileroy leads to Thomas' acceptance of a mystery drug at a club. Soon, Thomas is blacking out, students are being attacked and Vileroy drops a bombshell: There's a new stepbrother for Thomas, apart from her adopted Faust children. With help from briefly returning Another Faust and Another Pan (2010) characters, Thomas slowly pieces together how his troubles tie into Vileroy's motives. The prose is peppered with delightfully witty one-liners—the humor goes a long way toward keeping Thomas likable. The narration mostly follows Thomas, creating a focus that both enables his believable disorientation from the drug and allows his personal risks to elevate the story's tension. The preludes at chapter beginnings complete the story of who and what Vileroy is, building upon each other until questions raised by the previous novels have been answered.

A high-stakes conclusion that satisfies. (Fantasy. 14 & up)

Pub Date: March 27, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-7636-5261-6

Page Count: 256

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Feb. 5, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2012

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Heart-pounding.

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CEMETERY BOYS

A gay, transgender brujo with burgeoning powers seeks answers about his cousin’s death.

Sixteen-year-old Yadriel also wishes for acknowledgement from his community but unexpectedly finds himself entangled in the unresolved wishes of a strong-willed, good-looking spirit. He descends from a long line of brujx who have been granted magic power by Lady Death to heal the living and to guide spirits into the afterlife. Although he’s grown up surrounded by a close-knit community, Yadriel feels alone, excluded indefinitely from a sacred rite of passage because he is transgender. When he senses that his cousin Miguel has died suddenly but the family can’t locate him, Yadriel sees an opportunity to prove to everyone he’s a true brujo by solving the mystery and releasing his cousin’s lost spirit. His plan quickly falls apart, as he accidentally summons the spirit of Julian Diaz, a boy with unfinished business who died the same day as Miguel. Both the romance and mystery burn slow and hot until the climax. Stakes begin high, and the intensity only increases with a looming deadline and a constant risk that Julian might lose himself, turning maligno. The cast of characters represents a diversity of Latinx identities sharing a community in East Los Angeles. Julian is Colombian while Yadriel is Cuban and Mexican. Their romance provides joyful, ground-breaking representation for gay, transgender boys.

Heart-pounding. (Fantasy. 14-18)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-250-25046-9

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Swoon Reads/Macmillan

Review Posted Online: June 25, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2020

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A suspenseful mystery diminished by outdated gender stereotypes.

THE MURDER GAME

A murder in a boarding school leads a teen sleuth down a dangerous path.

When Luke and his roommate, Oscar, snuck out of their dorm room after hours to hook up with two girls in the woods, they did not expect to get involved in a murder. Dean Heckler’s young wife’s body is found the morning after, near the place the teens were hanging out. Fear of being expelled prevents them from confessing their presence around the time of the murder—but when Oscar becomes a suspect, Luke starts his own investigation to prove his best friend’s innocence. Fortunately, three years earlier Luke had escaped a kidnapping using survival skills learned from his former–POW grandfather, the same skills he now needs if he wants to find the true murderer and get out of this situation alive. This whodunit has enough twists and red herrings to make for an intriguing mystery if readers are prepared to suspend disbelief at how frequently adult characters act with implausible negligence. The book is also weighed down by a haze of misogyny when describing both girls at the school as well as the murdered woman, who remains a vapid, one-note seductress throughout. Luke’s vague and perfunctory attempts at challenging his male friends in their sexist views are not enough to clear the chauvinist miasma. Main characters are White.

A suspenseful mystery diminished by outdated gender stereotypes. (Mystery. 14-18)

Pub Date: April 6, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-72822-229-5

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

Review Posted Online: Jan. 26, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2021

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