An immersive, dazzling installment that journeys to new heights.

MIRROR'S EDGE

From the Impostors-Westerfeld series , Vol. 3

Frey infiltrates Shreve to rescue a friend and discovers more than she bargained for in this sequel to Shatter City (2019).

She and Col have undergone camo-surge, a full-body operation to hide their identities from the surveillance dust. Even though her twin sister, Rafi, is against the mission, Frey is determined to rescue her friend Boss X because she killed Seanan, who happened to be both his lover and the twins' brother. Now Frey navigates Shreve at the street level, uncovering secrets: A privateer gives her eyeglasses that reveal thousands of hidden messages covering every surface in the city. Used by smugglers and treasonous citizens, they offer her a glimpse into Shreve’s underbelly. She digs deeper and soon uncovers new horrors her father has committed along with his plans to maintain control. As the action escalates, Frey is locked in a silent struggle with her sister—who isn’t aware of the free cities’ plans for Frey to eventually rule Shreve—while battling her own identity dysmorphia. To take down their father, Frey and Rafi must decide who they really are, no matter the cost. Frey’s time in Shreve reveals a richer, more fully realized world than before. Each meticulously choreographed action sequence sings, building to a crescendo when Frey is thrust into a shocking new reality. The book is set in an alternate future North America with a cast that is cued as multiethnic.

An immersive, dazzling installment that journeys to new heights. (Science fiction. 12-18)

Pub Date: April 6, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-338-15158-9

Page Count: 400

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Feb. 23, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2021

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Riveting, brutal and beautifully told.

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WE WERE LIARS

A devastating tale of greed and secrets springs from the summer that tore Cady’s life apart.

Cady Sinclair’s family uses its inherited wealth to ensure that each successive generation is blond, beautiful and powerful. Reunited each summer by the family patriarch on his private island, his three adult daughters and various grandchildren lead charmed, fairy-tale lives (an idea reinforced by the periodic inclusions of Cady’s reworkings of fairy tales to tell the Sinclair family story). But this is no sanitized, modern Disney fairy tale; this is Cinderella with her stepsisters’ slashed heels in bloody glass slippers. Cady’s fairy-tale retellings are dark, as is the personal tragedy that has led to her examination of the skeletons in the Sinclair castle’s closets; its rent turns out to be extracted in personal sacrifices. Brilliantly, Lockhart resists simply crucifying the Sinclairs, which might make the family’s foreshadowed tragedy predictable or even satisfying. Instead, she humanizes them (and their painful contradictions) by including nostalgic images that showcase the love shared among Cady, her two cousins closest in age, and Gat, the Heathcliff-esque figure she has always loved. Though increasingly disenchanted with the Sinclair legacy of self-absorption, the four believe family redemption is possible—if they have the courage to act. Their sincere hopes and foolish naïveté make the teens’ desperate, grand gesture all that much more tragic.

Riveting, brutal and beautifully told. (Fiction. 14 & up)

Pub Date: May 13, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-385-74126-2

Page Count: 240

Publisher: Delacorte

Review Posted Online: March 17, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2014

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Part cautionary tale, part juicy love story, this will appeal to action and adventure fans who aren't yet sick of the genre.

SHATTER ME

A dystopic thriller joins the crowded shelves but doesn't distinguish itself.

Juliette was torn from her home and thrown into an asylum by The Reestablishment, a militaristic regime in control since an environmental catastrophe left society in ruins. Juliette’s journal holds her tortured thoughts in an attempt to repress memories of the horrific act that landed her in a cell. Mysteriously, Juliette’s touch kills. After months of isolation, her captors suddenly give her a cellmate—Adam, a drop-dead gorgeous guy. Adam, it turns out, is immune to her deadly touch. Unfortunately, he’s a soldier under orders from Warner, a power-hungry 19-year-old. But Adam belongs to a resistance movement; he helps Juliette escape to their stronghold, where she finds that she’s not the only one with superhuman abilities. The ending falls flat as the plot devolves into comic-book territory. Fast-paced action scenes convey imminent danger vividly, but there’s little sense of a broader world here. Overreliance on metaphor to express Juliette’s jaw-dropping surprise wears thin: “My mouth is sitting on my kneecaps. My eyebrows are dangling from the ceiling.” For all of her independence and superpowers, Juliette never moves beyond her role as a pawn in someone else’s schemes.

Part cautionary tale, part juicy love story, this will appeal to action and adventure fans who aren't yet sick of the genre. (Science fiction. 12 & up)

Pub Date: Nov. 15, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-06-208548-1

Page Count: 352

Publisher: HarperTeen

Review Posted Online: April 5, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2011

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