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THE RED NECKLACE by Sally Gardner Kirkus Star

THE RED NECKLACE

A Story of the French Revolution

By Sally Gardner

Age Range: 12 & up

Pub Date: May 1st, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-8037-3100-4
Publisher: Dial

Although clearly reveling in the trappings of melodrama, Gardner keep tight control over this lush tale of magic, betrayal and Revolution. Yann, of Roma blood, has been raised by the dwarf Têtu, and together they assist a famed stage magician. When the evil Count Kalliovski murders the magician, hoping to discover the secret of his astounding automaton, Yann is smuggled off alone to London, to safety and education. He returns to a Paris on the brink of revolution, seeking not only Têtu but Sidonie, a young aristocrat whose unhinged father loathes her and has promised her to the Count. Richly emotional scenes switch between London and Paris, between chateaux and prisons, between boudoirs and stinking, blood-spattered streets. A hint of magic overlays the Dickensian complications, which include several sets of ill-fated lovers, secret letters, sinister automata, mystical Gypsy powers and a necklace of garnets found placed ’round the necks of a series of murder victims. Gardner’s heightened prose rarely falters, and teen readers will eat it up. (Fantasy. 12+)