22 Orphans

In this tale, a mischievous group of orphans attempts to show their new headmistress how to have a good time. They build forts under tables, hang from the orphanage balconies and ride a cart down the stairwell. Each time, the fretful headmistress’s curious refrain is “Elephants are strong and sturdy but children, remember, are not elephants,” as she puts them all to bed under orange-and-white checkered coverlets. The children soon tire of bedrest, and one morning, the woman discovers they have fled, and only an orange-and-white checked elephant remains.

H.I.V.E.: The Higher Institute of Villainous Education

Otto Malpense may only be thirteen years old, but so far he has managed to run the orphanage where he lives, and he has come up with a plan clever enough to trick the most powerful man in the country. He is the perfect candidate to become the world’s next supervillain.That is why he ends up at H.I.V.E., handpicked to become a member of the incoming class. The students have been kidnapped and brought to a secluded island inside a seemingly active volcano, where the school has resided for decades. All the kids are elite; they are the most athletic,the most technically advanced, and the smartest in the country. Inside the cavernous marble rooms, floodlit hangars, and steel doors, the students are enrolled in Villainy Studies and Stealth and Evasion 101.But what Otto soon comes to realize is that this is a six-year program,and leaving is not an option.With the help of his new friends: an athletic martial-arts expert; a world-famous, beautiful diamond thief; and a spunky computer genius — the only other people who seem to want to leave — Otto plot to escape the prison known as H.I.V.E.?

Lamplighter

Orphan Rossamünd Bookchild has been sworn into the Emperor’s service—his duty is to light the lamps along the Emperor’s highways and protect travelers from the ferocious bogles that live in the wild. But he’s found it no easier to fit in with the lamplighters than he did with the foundlings—always too small and too meek—and his loneliness continues no matter how hard he tries to succeed. But when a haughty young girl, a member of a suspiciously regarded society of all-women teratologists— monster hunters—is forced upon the lamplighters for training, Rossamünd is no longer the most despised soul around. As Rossamünd begins to make new friends in the dangerous world of the Half-Continent, he also seems to make more enemies, finding himself pushed toward a destiny that he could never have imagined.

Journey to the River Sea

This hair-raising novel, set in turn-of-the-last-century Brazil, introduces Maia, an orphan, sent from England to live with unfamiliar cousins on a rubber plantation. As Maia and her kind governess arrive in their new home, they each have secret hopes of adventure–which are immediately quashed by the Carters, who hate their adopted land are obsessed with re-creating England in the forest, right down to the watery puddings.

Fortune’s Fool

CONRAD THE GOOD serves as court jester to a most unworthy master: Lord Otto “the Witless,” who rarely appreciates jesting and acrobatics and more often rewards his good fool with a good whipping. So one night, Conrad flees, leaving Otto’s realm in search of a more enlightened master—taking with him only his noble horse, Blackspur, and his beloved, the servant girl Christa the Fair. As they take to the road, they soon learn that along with their quest comes hardship. But for all the hardships they encounter, there are as many unexpected joys and friends in unexpected places, and there is always their love for one another. And always, their destination lies before them: somewhere, a sanctuary where they’ll have the freedom to be together and be themselves.