Saturday, August 15, 2015

Serafina Shines

Serafina and the Black CloakSerafina and the Black Cloak by Robert  Beatty

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

"None of the rich folk upstairs know that Serafina exists; she and her pa, the estate's maintenance man, have lived in the basement for as long as Serafina can remember. She has learned to prowl through the darkened corridors at night, to sneak and hide, using the mansion's hidden doors and secret passageways.

But when children at the estate start disappearing, only Serafina knows the clues to follow. A terrifying man in a black cloak stalks Biltmore's corridors at night."--Flap copy

Loved it, characters, writing, atmosphere...hard to categorize! It's wonderful, but it's also definitely a bit scary. The book falls between YA and Middle Grade, to my mind; some teens don't want to read about younger kids, and some younger kids really would be frightened. There's a strong coming-of-age trope, as well, for the major themes of the book are right-and-wrong, good-and-evil.

More, Mr. Beatty, more adventures, please!
(I received an EARC of the book from the publisher and Netgalley.)

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Not Fooling Around

Fool Me OnceFool Me Once by Steve Hockensmith

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a worthy follow-up to The White Magic Five and Dime. The twist to this mystery series is the quirky Tarot interpretations that enhance the plot. Alanis has taken over her con-woman mother's Tarot shop with the intent to help where her mother harmed. In this second offering, one of her clients is suspected of murder and Alanis sets out to reveal the truth. Smart with heart describes Alanis and the tone of the books; I highly recommend this quirky series with humor and an esoteric touch.

I received an earc of this book from the publisher and Netgalley.

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