Review: Set Me Free by Ann Clare LeZotte

Set Me Free by Ann Clare LeZotte

Set Me Free
Ann Clare LeZotte
Scholastic Press
Published September 21, 2021

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About Set Me Free

Three years after being kidnapped and rendered a “live specimen” in a cruel experiment to determine the cause of her deafness, fourteen year old Mary Lambert is summoned from her home in Martha’s Vineyard to the mainland to teach a younger deaf girl to communicate with sign language. She can’t help but wonder, Can a child of eight with no prior language be taught?

Still, weary of domestic life and struggling to write as she used to, Mary pours all her passion into the pursuit of freeing this … Continue reading

Review: Secret of the Shadow Beasts by Diane Magras

The Secret of the Shadow Beasts by Diane Magras

Secret of the Shadow Beasts
Diane Magras
Dial Books
Published June 14, 2022

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About Secret of the Shadow Beasts

For fans of Dragon Pearl and the Lockwood & Co. series comes a swift-moving contemporary fantasy about a young girl tasked with destroying deadly shadow creatures.

In Brannland, terrifying beasts called Umbrae roam freely once the sun sets, so venomous that a single bite will kill a full-grown adult–and lately, with each day that passes, their population seems to double. The only people who can destroy them are immune children like Nora, who are recruited at the age of seven to leave their families behind and begin training at a retrofitted castle called Noye’s Hill. … Continue reading

Review: Cattywampus by Ash Van Otterloo

Cattywampus by Ash Van Otterloo

Cattywampus
Ash Van Otterloo
Scholastic
Published August 4, 2020

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About Cattywampus

The magical story of a hex that goes haywire, and the power of friendship to set things right!

In the town of Howler’s Hollow, conjuring magic is strictly off-limits. Only nothing makes Delpha McGill’s skin crawl more than rules. So when she finds her family’s secret book of hexes, she’s itching to use it to banish her mama’s money troubles. She just has to keep it quiet as the grave — not exactly Delpha’s specialty.

Trouble is, Katybird Hearn is hankering to get her hands on the spell book, too. The daughter of a rival witching family, Katy has reasons of her own for wanting to … Continue reading

Review: Ripped Away by Shirley Vernick

Ripped Away by Shirley Vernick

Ripped Away
Shirley Vernick
Fitzroy Books
Published February 8, 2022

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About Ripped Away

Ignored yet again by his crush, Abe Pearlman wanders into Fortunes and Futures for a little diversion. The fortune teller reveals that Abe may be able to save someone’s life. But before he can ask any questions, he’s swept to the slums of Victorian London, where he finds that his crush, Mitzy Singer, has also been banished. Abe and Mitzy soon discover that they’ve been plunked down in the middle of the Jack the Ripper spree.

To get back home, they’ll have to work together to figure out how the fortune teller’s prophecy is connected to … Continue reading

Review: The Boy Who Met a Whale by Nizrana Farook

The Boy Who Met a Whale by Nizrana Farook

The Boy Who Met a Whale
Nizrana Farook
Peachtree Publishing
Published on February 1, 2022

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About The Boy Who Met a Whale

From the author of THE GIRL WHO STOLE AN ELEPHANT comes another brilliant escapade. A thrilling adventure set in fictional Sri Lanka, jam-packed with peril and kidnap and a huge blue whale!

Razi, a local fisherboy, is watching turtle eggs hatch when he sees a boat bobbing into view. With a chill, he notices a small, still hand hanging over the side… Inside is Zheng, who’s escaped a shipwreck and is full of tales of sea monsters and missing treasure. But the villains who are after Zheng are soon … Continue reading

Review: Skandar and the Unicorn Thief by A. F. Steadman

Skandar and the Unicorn Thief by A. F. Steadman

Skandar and the Unicorn Thief
A. F. Steadman
Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers
Published May 3, 2022

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About Skandar and the Unicorn Thief

Skandar Smith has always yearned to leave the Mainland and escape to the secretive Island, where wild unicorns roam free. He’s spent years studying for his Hatchery exam, the annual test that selects a handful of Mainlander thirteen-year-olds to train to become unicorn riders. But on the day of Skandar’s exam, things go horribly wrong, and his hopes are shattered…until a mysterious figure knocks on his door at midnight, bearing a message: the Island is in peril and Skandar must answer … Continue reading