A full-throttle fanfare for those with a predilection for alchemy, adventure, and a little anarchy.

READ REVIEW

THE QUEST TO THE UNCHARTED LANDS

Well-behaved girls seldom make history…or save ill-fated airships from menacing saboteurs.

Stella Glass won’t stand for being left at home while her healer parents embark on an exploratory voyage via airship to the uncharted lands. So, like any forward-thinking, industrious, stubborn trailblazer, she stows herself away in the ship’s hull. It isn’t long before she realizes she’s not the only one camping among the cargo. Cyrus, with whom she immediately butts heads, claims he is there to ensure the ship’s safe travel, but Stella isn’t convinced. It isn’t until a faceless (in actuality, face-changing) man nearly kills them both—and crashes the ship—that Stella realizes just how much Cyrus and his mysterious powers of protection are needed (and how much she digs him). While The Secrets of Solace (2016) was a respite from the hearty steampunk aesthetic of The Mark of the Dragonfly (2014), the metallic, gear-shifting flavor returns in this third book set in Solace. Without much delving into cultural identifiers, Stella and Cyrus occupy the white default in this fantasy world of quasi-humans, face-shifters, telepathic species, and a winged reptilian race. With a pace that doesn’t let up, the combustible action is interwoven with the need to decipher what is exploration and what is invasion: does anyone ever really come in peace? Hopefully.

A full-throttle fanfare for those with a predilection for alchemy, adventure, and a little anarchy. (map, glossary) (Steampunk. 11-15)

Pub Date: June 13, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-101-93312-1

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Delacorte

Review Posted Online: March 20, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2017

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

A sly, side-splitting hoot from start to finish.

THE MECHANICAL MIND OF JOHN COGGIN

The dreary prospect of spending a lifetime making caskets instead of wonderful inventions prompts a young orphan to snatch up his little sister and flee. Where? To the circus, of course.

Fortunately or otherwise, John and 6-year-old Page join up with Boz—sometime human cannonball for the seedy Wandering Wayfarers and a “vertically challenged” trickster with a fantastic gift for sowing chaos. Alas, the budding engineer barely has time to settle in to begin work on an experimental circus wagon powered by chicken poop and dubbed (with questionable forethought) the Autopsy. The hot pursuit of malign and indomitable Great-Aunt Beauregard, the Coggins’ only living relative, forces all three to leave the troupe for further flights and misadventures. Teele spins her adventure around a sturdy protagonist whose love for his little sister is matched only by his fierce desire for something better in life for them both and tucks in an outstanding supporting cast featuring several notably strong-minded, independent women (Page, whose glare “would kill spiders dead,” not least among them). Better yet, in Boz she has created a scene-stealing force of nature, a free spirit who’s never happier than when he’s stirring up mischief. A climactic clutch culminating in a magnificently destructive display of fireworks leaves the Coggin sibs well-positioned for bright futures. (Illustrations not seen.)

A sly, side-splitting hoot from start to finish. (Adventure. 11-13)

Pub Date: April 12, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-06-234510-3

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Walden Pond Press/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2016

Did you like this book?

Readers will be irresistibly drawn into Harry's world by GrandPre's comic illustrations and Rowling's expert combination of...

HARRY POTTER AND THE CHAMBER OF SECRETS

From the Harry Potter series , Vol. 2

This sequel to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (1998) brings back the doughty young wizard-in-training to face suspicious adults, hostile classmates, fretful ghosts, rambunctious spells, giant spiders, and even an avatar of Lord Voldemort, the evil sorcerer who killed his parents, while saving the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry from a deadly, mysterious menace.

Ignoring a most peculiar warning, Harry kicks off his second year at Hogwarts after a dreadful summer with his hateful guardians, the Dursleys, and is instantly cast into a whirlwind of magical pranks and misadventures, culminating in a visit to the hidden cavern where his friend Ron's little sister Ginny lies, barely alive, in a trap set by his worst enemy. Surrounded by a grand mix of wise and inept faculty, sneering or loyal peers—plus an array of supernatural creatures including Nearly Headless Nick and a huge, serpentine basilisk—Harry steadily rises to every challenge, and though he plays but one match of the gloriously chaotic field game Quidditch, he does get in plenty of magic and a bit of swordplay on his way to becoming a hero again.

Readers will be irresistibly drawn into Harry's world by GrandPre's comic illustrations and Rowling's expert combination of broad boarding school farce and high fantasy. (Fiction. 11-14)

Pub Date: June 2, 1999

ISBN: 0-439-06486-4

Page Count: 341

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 1999

Did you like this book?

more