Zuli is determined to find out why the souls of birds have stopped returning to the Great Tree and bring them back. Adventures and mishaps happen one after another as she gets closer to finding out who’s responsible and learns about who she really is and what she’s capable of. There’s magic and a slew of magical creatures like goblins, griffins, a dragon and the cautious, yet faithful owl, Frowly. The cliffhanger promises more adventures with Zuli’s newfound friends and more information about her past.
Posts by Jody M
Belonging is a common theme in many young adult stories. Graphic novels provide an excellent visual of capturing the experiences and emotions as characters grow and find themselves. It’s as if we’re dropping in or hovering over a character’s shoulder to see a slice of their life. Here are three insightful and at times, humorous graphic novels to check out:
It’s not very often a science fiction book wins the Newbery Award and the Pura Belpré Award but The Last Cuentista did this year. The Last Cuentista is a dystopian story with tales of Mexican folklore woven within. ‘Cuentista’ in Spanish means storyteller and the main character, Petra Peña, is truly the only cuentista left in the world.
In the Young Adult book world, there are many new, fresh voices being represented as well as more titles from favorite YA authors. Here are some YA books that have left an impression on me this past year. They made me stay up way too late or were a treat to listen to as I mowed the lawn or drove around town.
Baek Heena is one of Korea’s most famous picture book authors and artists.She grew up with a vivid imagination and her inner child shines through in her books. She makes a conscious effort in her artwork and storytelling to show the perspectives and emotions of children. You’ll definitely get a sense of awe along with a few giggles reading this book.
Maureen and Francine Carter are twins and inseparable until the start of sixth grade. Maureen doesn’t understand why Francine doesn’t want things to be as they always have been. Francine’s acting different now. She wants to be called Fran, starts joining other groups, she cares about being stylish, and wants to run for class president?! Tired of not being the ‘smart twin’ and with a twinge of anger at Fran, Maureen decides to run for class president too. Can they be competitive and still be loving sisters? It’s going to be a bumpy election with lessons to be learned on both sides.
Somewhere in the Nevada desert, Rose Colter hears her best friend’s last voicemail message broadcasted on the radio. With her car broken down, she runs towards the broadcast tower into a town called Lotus Valley. The townspeople have been waiting for her; in fact, she was prophesied to arrive and in doing so would bring about a great flood within the next three days. Is Rose the cause of the flood and if so, why?
Author Candace Fleming and illustrator Eric Rohmann have wowed the children’s book world with a very engaging and detailed book about bees. Did you know bees are quite hairy?! The oil paintings of bees in this book are so close-up you’ll feel like you’re just as tiny, getting exclusive access of a nest from a bee's point-of-view.
Suraya has always found it hard to make friends and being a new student doesn't help. She does have one good friend, although it comes in the form of a grasshopper. It’s a pelesit, a spirit familiar that serves Survaya, inherited from her estranged grandmother. The book begins with the reader being empathetic of lonely Suraya and welcoming of her pelesit. You’ll be rooting for them thinking, “I’m glad he’s there to protect her from those bullies!” But soon things take a wicked turn, reminiscent of a popular horror movie when awful things start happening to Suraya herself.
What are seven young ladies to do when the headmistress and her brother abruptly falls over dead during dinner? They don't want to go back to their homes and there may be a killer amongst them. The solution: bury the corpses in the garden and dress up one of the students as their headmistress. The mystery thickens as the young ladies, each with her own unique characteristic, tries to keep up this farce and deal with meddling neighbors, a lovestruck admiral, long-lost relatives, and inquisitive constables.