With a page-ripping plot and realistic character development, Henry’s funny, heartwarming tale of unlikely rebels soars: an...

HERETICS ANONYMOUS

Teen angst and religious reflection cross paths in this insightful tale of self-discovery.

This engrossing bildungsroman centers on the travails of white, first-person narrator Michael Ausman. Reeling from his family’s frequent moves, and now forced to change schools less than two months into 11th grade, Michael is resentful at being at the mercy of his father’s job and worrying about how he, an atheist, will fit in at St. Clare’s, the best private—and Catholic—school in town. Luckily, Michael soon falls in with others bucking the St. Clare’s norm: Lucy, a devout Colombian-American Catholic bent on reforming the church; Avi, a gay, semi-observant Jew; Eden, a Celtic Reconstructionist Polytheist with Irish heritage; and Max, a Korean-American Unitarian. Together this group of iconoclasts forms “Heretics Anonymous,” a deliciously secret society united in the belief, “That all people, regardless of what they worship, who they love, and what they think / Have a right to exist, and a right to be heard.” The hypocrisy-busting acts of rebellion the group engages in range from hilariously annotating the school’s sex-ed DVD to circulating an alternative school paper challenging the dress code and exposing the firing of a popular teacher. But when Michael goes rogue and acts alone, his entire world is threatened.

With a page-ripping plot and realistic character development, Henry’s funny, heartwarming tale of unlikely rebels soars: an auspicious debut. (Fiction. 13-adult)

Pub Date: Aug. 7, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-06-269887-2

Page Count: 336

Publisher: Katherine Tegen/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: April 30, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2018

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How can such a hefty tome be un-put-down-able excitement from beginning to end? (glossary) (Fantasy. 14 & up)

CROOKED KINGDOM

From the Six of Crows series , Vol. 2

This hefty sequel to Six of Crows (2015) brings high-tension conclusions to the many intertwined intrigues of Ketterdam.

It's time for revenge—has been ever since old-before-his-time crook Kaz and his friends were double-crossed by the merchant princes of Ketterdam, an early-industrial Amsterdam-like fantasy city filled to the brim with crime and corruption. Disabled, infuriated, and perpetually scheming Kaz, the light-skinned teen mastermind, coordinates the efforts to rescue Inej. Though Kaz is loath to admit weakness, Inej is his, for he can't bear any harm come to the knife-wielding, brown-skinned Suli acrobat. Their team is rounded out by Wylan, a light-skinned chemist and musician whose merchant father tried to have him murdered and who can't read due to a print disability; Wylan's brown-skinned biracial boyfriend, Jesper, a flirtatious gambler with ADHD; Nina, the pale brunette Grisha witch and recovering addict from Russia-like Ravka; Matthias, Nina's national enemy and great love, a big, white, blond drüskelle warrior from the cold northern lands; and Kuwei, the rescued Shu boy everyone wants to kidnap. Can these kids rescue everyone who needs rescuing in Ketterdam's vile political swamp? This is dark and violent—one notable scene features a parade of teens armed with revolvers, rifles, pistols, explosives, and flash bombs—but gut-wrenchingly genuine. Astonishingly, Bardugo keeps all these balls in the air over the 500-plus pages of narrative.

How can such a hefty tome be un-put-down-able excitement from beginning to end? (glossary) (Fantasy. 14 & up)

Pub Date: Sept. 27, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-62779-213-4

Page Count: 560

Publisher: Henry Holt

Review Posted Online: Aug. 2, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2016

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Black is building a complex mythology; now is a great time to tune in.

THE CRUEL PRINCE

From the Folk of the Air series , Vol. 1

Black is back with another dark tale of Faerie, this one set in Faerie and launching a new trilogy.

Jude—broken, rebuilt, fueled by anger and a sense of powerlessness—has never recovered from watching her adoptive Faerie father murder her parents. Human Jude (whose brown hair curls and whose skin color is never described) both hates and loves Madoc, whose murderous nature is true to his Faerie self and who in his way loves her. Brought up among the Gentry, Jude has never felt at ease, but after a decade, Faerie has become her home despite the constant peril. Black’s latest looks at nature and nurture and spins a tale of court intrigue, bloodshed, and a truly messed-up relationship that might be the saving of Jude and the titular prince, who, like Jude, has been shaped by the cruelties of others. Fierce and observant Jude is utterly unaware of the currents that swirl around her. She fights, plots, even murders enemies, but she must also navigate her relationship with her complex family (human, Faerie, and mixed). This is a heady blend of Faerie lore, high fantasy, and high school drama, dripping with description that brings the dangerous but tempting world of Faerie to life.

Black is building a complex mythology; now is a great time to tune in. (Fantasy. 14-adult)

Pub Date: Jan. 2, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-316-31027-7

Page Count: 384

Publisher: Little, Brown

Review Posted Online: Sept. 26, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2017

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