This edgy first installment maneuvers forces into position; readers will want to stay tuned.

ANTIGODDESS

From the Goddess War series , Vol. 1

This new series from one of the best up-and-coming horror/suspense writers around (Girl of Nightmares, 2012, etc.) updates Greek mythology but offers far more than a Percy Jackson retread.

The ancient Olympians have lived disguised among the human population for millennia, but now most of them appear to be dying in ways appropriate to their natures. Athena is choking on owl feathers; Demeter is sinking into the earth; Poseidon has been corrupted with ocean pollution; Hermes’ metabolism is eating him alive. Athena and Hermes, teamed up, learn that Hera and Poseidon intend to survive by murdering other gods rather as the Titans ate their children. They embark on a mission to find the reincarnated Cassandra, now a teenager in upstate New York. Unbeknownst to Cassandra, her boyfriend, Aidan, is actually Apollo, the only god not dying. In the course of the story, the gods will find other reincarnated figures from the Trojan War who they hope will aid them in their struggle. Blake’s spunky and imaginative narrative illuminates the personalities of the gods, especially Athena, who’s gone a bit punk and is endowed with wry humor: “It’s a mistake she never would have made two thousand years ago.” Athena begins to doubt her own powers, upping the suspense level. With little doubt about which side is stronger, can plucky Athena and her allies possibly win?

This edgy first installment maneuvers forces into position; readers will want to stay tuned. (Fantasy. 12 & up)

Pub Date: Sept. 10, 2013

ISBN: 978-0-7653-3443-5

Page Count: 336

Publisher: Tor

Review Posted Online: April 10, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2013

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An immersive tale of brave, vulnerable teens facing threats both real and fantastic.

ALL OUR HIDDEN GIFTS

An Irish teen grapples with past misdeeds and newfound ties to magic.

When 16-year-old Maeve discovers a deck of tarot cards stashed with a mixtape of moody indie music from 1990, she starts giving readings for her classmates at her all-girls private school. Though her shame over dumping her strange friend Lily during an attempt to climb the social ladder at St. Bernadette’s is still palpable, it doesn’t stop her from trying to use the tarot in her favor to further this goal. However, after speaking harsh words to Lily during a reading, Maeve is horrified when her former friend later disappears. As she struggles to understand the forces at play within her, classmate Fiona proves to be just the friend Maeve needs. Detailed, interesting characters carry this contemporary story of competing energy and curses. Woven delicately throughout are chillingly eerie depictions of the Housekeeper, a figure who shows up on an extra card in the deck, echoing the White Lady legend from Irish folklore. Even more disturbing is an organization of young people led by a homophobic but charismatic figurehead intent on provoking backlash against Ireland’s recent civil rights victories. Most characters are White; Fiona is biracial, with a Filipina mother and White Irish father. Roe, Maeve’s love interest and Lily’s sibling, is a bisexual, genderqueer person who is a target for intolerance in their small city of Kilbeg.

An immersive tale of brave, vulnerable teens facing threats both real and fantastic. (Paranormal. 14-18)

Pub Date: June 8, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-5362-1394-2

Page Count: 384

Publisher: Walker US/Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Dec. 10, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2021

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

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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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