Publishers Weekly Two teenage girls-Taisin, a sage who has visions, and Kaede, a brave fighter from a powerful family-must travel to see the Fairy Queen to try and save their land. A persistent winter has settled over their kingdom for two years, halting not only trade and harvests but the natural course of life itself, and threatening the survival of Taisin and Kaede's fellow citizens. The journey to the city of Taninli, home of the Fairy Queen, is treacherous, and along the way Taisin, Kaede, and their travel companions face many dangers and tests of their abilities, not least of which are Taisin and Kaede's growing feelings for each other. Lo's storytelling and prose are masterful, and her protagonists will fascinate, particularly Taisin and her relationship to death and its accompanying rituals, her visions, and the way she can occupy another's mind. As with Ash, Lo's characters are emotionally reserved, which makes the unfolding of romance between Kaede and Taisin all the more satisfying. Fans of Garth Nix's Abhorsen trilogy will love this. Ages 15-up. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
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Book list Set in the same universe as but in an era long preceding that of Lo's earlier fantasy, Ash (2009), Huntress follows the physical, intellectual, and romantic adventures of two teen girls: apprenticing guard and huntress Kaede and future sage Taisin. Elowen, the daughter of the Fairy Queen, threatens to destabilize and destroy both the land of fey and the land of humans; Kaede and Taisin must employ their different strengths to face and overcome her and to rescue the Fairy Queen. Along the way, the two girls recognize and act upon their attraction to each other, knowing that they have no future together because of Taisin's vocation. Lo's alternately languid and heated descriptions of the politics and obstacles in Kaede's life from her father's presumption to marry her off to her fight with Elowen build a compelling world to pull in readers and hold them fast to the final page. A gripping fantasy with high appeal for fans of Ursula K. Le Guin as well as for readers in search of a smart, female-dominated adventure tale.--Goldsmith, Francisca Copyright 2010 Booklist
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.
School Library Journal Gr 10 Up-Set in the same world as Ash (Little, Brown, 2009) but centuries earlier, this stand-alone novel tells the story of Kaede, a 17-year-old studying at the Academy of Sages. When climate changes cause terrible storms resulting in the loss of crops and livestock, she, along with Taisin, another sage-in-training and seer; Con, the king's son; and some trusted guards are sent to renew an ancient treaty with the Fairy Queen, hoping that together they might restore order to the land. After many arduous weeks of travel, they arrive only to discover that the fairy realm is in straits nearly as dire as those they left behind in the human lands. Together, the three young people embark on a desperate mission to destroy the being responsible for draining the fay of their magic and wreaking havoc on the land. In spite of the prohibition against sages forming intimate relations, feelings develop between Kaede and Taisin, and the two girls must decide whether to follow their hearts or their destinies. Lo has created a wonderfully detailed world, and this dynamic and moving story of love that must find a way against nearly insurmountable odds will be as well received as Ash. Select where historical fantasy and GLBT fiction are popular.-Jane Henriksen Baird, Anchorage Public Library, AK (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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School Library Journal : K-Gr 4-- Mirette's mother keeps a boardinghouse that attracts traveling performers . The girl is intrigued by one silent visitor, Bellini, who has come for a rest. She finds him next morning walking a high wire strung across the backyard. Immediately, she is drawn to it, practicing on it herself until she finds her balance and can walk its distance. But she finds the man unusually secretive about his identity; he was a famous high-wire artist, but has lost his courage. He is lured by an agent to make a comeback, but freezes on the wire. Seeing Mirette at the end of it restores his nerve; after the performance the two set off on a new career together. As improbable as the story is, its theatrical setting at some historical distance, replete with European architecture and exotic settings and people, helps lend credibility to this circus tale. Mirette, through determination and perhaps talent, trains herself, overcoming countless falls on cobblestone, vaunting pride that goes before a fall, and lack of encouragement from Bellini. The impressionistic paintings, full of mottled, rough edges and bright colors, capture both the detail and the general milieu of Paris in the last century. The colors are reminiscent of Toulouse-Lautrec, the daubing technique of Seurat. A satisfying, high-spirited adventure. --Ruth K. MacDonald, Purdue Univ . Calumet, Hammond, IN
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School Library Journal : Gr 5-8-Stanley Yelnats IV has been wrongly accused of stealing a famous baseball player's valued sneakers and is sent to Camp Green Lake, a juvenile detention home where the boys dig holes, five feet deep by five feet across, in the miserable Texas heat. It's just one more piece of bad luck that's befallen Stanley's family for generations as a result of the infamous curse of Madame Zeroni. Overweight Stanley, his hands bloodied from digging, figures that at the end of his sentence, he'll "...either be in great physical condition or else dead." Overcome by the useless work and his own feelings of futility, fellow inmate Zero runs away into the arid, desolate surroundings and Stanley, acting on impulse, embarks on a risky mission to save him. He unwittingly lays Madame Zeroni's curse to rest, finds buried treasure, survives yellow-spotted lizards, and gains wisdom and inner strength from the quirky turns of fate. In the almost mystical progress of their ascent of the rock edifice known as "Big Thumb," they discover their own invaluable worth and unwavering friendship. Each of the boys is painted as a distinct individual through Sachar's deftly chosen words. The author's ability to knit Stanley and Zero's compelling story in and out of a history of intriguing ancestors is captivating. Stanley's wit, integrity, faith, and wistful innocence will charm readers. A multitude of colorful characters coupled with the skillful braiding of ethnic folklore, American legend, and contemporary issues is a brilliant achievement. There is no question, kids will love Holes.-Alison Follos, North Country School, Lake Placid, NY
Library Journal Whatever your political stripe, if you want insight into the impact of conservatism today, you'll want to investigate this book from Ryan, U.S. representative for Wisconsin's 1st Congressional District and chair of the House Budget Committee. A big focus on economics. (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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