A charming and earnest sequel that will please series fans.

THE WEEPING TIDE

From the Wilderlore series , Vol. 2

Barclay Thorne’s mystical journey continues in an oceanic setting.

Several months after the end of The Accidental Apprentice (2021), readers encounter 11-year-old Barclay, a promising Lore Keeper apprentice, in the middle of a class he’s taking with renowned Guardian Keeper Runa Rasgar. Along with shaggy beast Root, close friend Viola Dumont, and frenemy Tadg Murdock, Barclay has traveled to the Sea, one of many Wilderlands that make up this fantasy world. This area is struggling—Beasts are increasingly posing a threat, including Lochmordra, the Legendary Beast of the Sea, who is capable of great destruction. As the Lore Keepers and Masters alike try to understand what’s causing this rise in aggressive Beast behavior, Barclay’s circle of friends deals with a rival group of apprentices who are seeking to prove their superiority. Barclay must come to terms with his identity as a former Elsie, or nonmagical person, while also struggling to tame his wild wind Lore. This outing is certainly engaging, expanding upon many of the same playful elements and worldbuilding of the first book, although it doesn’t quite reach the same heights of joy that came with the initial discovery of the magic of Wilderlore. As before, characters have a range of skin tones in this naturally diverse world.

A charming and earnest sequel that will please series fans. (bestiary) (Fantasy. 8-12)

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 2022

ISBN: 978-1-5344-7759-9

Page Count: 352

Publisher: McElderry

Review Posted Online: Nov. 16, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2021

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NIGHTBIRD

There’s a monster in Sidwell, Massachusetts, that can only be seen at night or, as Twig reveals, if passersby are near her house.

It’s her older brother, James, born with wings just like every male in the Fowler line for the last 200 years. They were cursed by the Witch of Sidwell, left brokenhearted by their forebear Lowell Fowler. Twig and James are tired of the secret and self-imposed isolation. Lonely Twig narrates, bringing the small town and its characters to life, intertwining events present and past, and describing the effects of the spell on her fractured family’s daily life. Longing for some normalcy and companionship, she befriends new-neighbor Julia while James falls in love with Julia’s sister, Agate—only to learn they are descendants of the Witch. James and Agate seem as star-crossed as their ancestors, especially when the townspeople attribute a spate of petty thefts and graffiti protesting the development of the woods to the monster and launch a hunt. The mix of romance and magic is irresistible and the tension, compelling. With the help of friends and through a series of self-realizations and discoveries, Twig grows more self-assured. She is certain she knows how to change the curse. In so doing, Twig not only changes James’ fate, but her own, for the first time feeling the fullness of family, friends and hope for the future.

Enchanting. (Magical realism. 9-12)

Pub Date: March 10, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-385-38958-7

Page Count: 208

Publisher: Wendy Lamb/Random

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2015

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A worthy combination of athletic action, the virtues of inner strength, and the importance of friendship.

LEGACY AND THE DOUBLE

From the Legacy series , Vol. 2

A young tennis champion becomes the target of revenge.

In this sequel to Legacy and the Queen (2019), Legacy Petrin and her friends Javi and Pippa have returned to Legacy’s home province and the orphanage run by her father. With her friends’ help, she is in training to defend her championship when they discover that another player, operating under the protection of High Consul Silla, is presenting herself as Legacy. She is so convincing that the real Legacy is accused of being an imitation. False Legacy has become a hero to the masses, further strengthening Silla’s hold, and it becomes imperative to uncover and defeat her. If Legacy is to win again, she must play her imposter while disguised as someone else. Winning at tennis is not just about money and fame, but resisting Silla’s plans to send more young people into brutal mines with little hope of better lives. Legacy will have to overcome her fears and find the magic that allowed her to claim victory in the past. This story, with its elements of sports, fantasy, and social consciousness that highlight tensions between the powerful and those they prey upon, successfully continues the series conceived by late basketball superstar Bryant. As before, the tennis matches are depicted with pace and spirit. Legacy and Javi have brown skin; most other characters default to White.

A worthy combination of athletic action, the virtues of inner strength, and the importance of friendship. (Fantasy. 9-12)

Pub Date: Aug. 24, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-949520-19-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Granity Studios

Review Posted Online: July 28, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2021

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