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Spirits in the Park

by Scott Mebus

Age Range: 11 - 13

Pub Date: May 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-525-42148-1
Publisher: Dutton

Mebus’s romp through mythical “Manahatta” (Gods of Manhattan, 2008) becomes more of a slog in this sequel, but there are still enough oddball characters, scary villains and inspired one-liners to keep the plot ticking over. With the magical Trap that has long confined the indigenous Munsees in Central Park about to open, bloodthirsty schemer Willem Kieft is hard at work fomenting fear of the consequences among the spirits inhabiting the rest of the island. Meanwhile, young Rory’s search for his father takes him into remote reaches of New York Harbor, and Rory’s kick-ass little sister Bridget sets out to find the Mayor’s long-lost daughter. Not only does the tale progress in fits and starts thanks to frequent shifts among multiple points of view, but the action grinds to a halt with tedious frequency for wordy explanations of motives, past actions and background history. Fans of the opener will be delighted to see Rory, Bridget, the awesome Spirit Dog Tucket, the clan of intrepid Battle Roaches and the rest back in action—but can only hope for less talk in future episodes. (Fantasy. 11-13)