The King And The Sea

“Buzz off,” said the king, shooing the bee from his flower. “Don’t you know I’m the king?” “And I’m the queen,” said the bee, stinging the king’s nose. These stunningly illustrated, ultra-short stories are seemingly simple but ultimately profound tales. In each story, the king has an encounter which he tries to rule over. But of course the rain doesn’t stop just because a king orders it, and tired eyelids can be much stronger than a king’s will. The king sees that his power has limits; the world is diverse and much of it operates under its own rules.

The Nightwood

Based on the Celtic folktale of Tamlynne, The Nightwood tells the story of the young daughter of the Earl of March, who is enticed into the nearby wood by the haunting strains of Elfin music. Inside the mysterious forest, Elaine meets Tamlynne, an enchanted young knight in the court of the Elfin Queen. Elaine and Tamlynne fall in love, but in order for Tamlynne to escape the elves, Elaine must pay a terrible price. In the end, mortal love proves stronger than the power of the Elfin Queen and the two lovers are set free.

Fury of The Phoenix

The Gods have abandoned Ai Ling. Her mysterious power haunts her day and night, and she leaves home—with just the moon as her guide—overwhelmed by her memories and visions and an unbearable sense of dread. For Ai Ling knows that Chen Yong is vulnerable to corrupt enchantments from the under-world. How can she do nothing when she has the skill and power to fight at his side? A dream has told her where he is, the name of the ship he is traveling on, his destination. So she steals off and stows away on board. The ocean voyage brings with it brutal danger, haunting revelations, and new friendships, but also the premonition of a very real and terrifying threat. Zhong Ye—the powerful sorcerer whom Ai Ling believed she had vanquished in the Palace of Fragrant Dreams—is trapped in Hell, neither alive nor dead. Can he reach from beyond the grave to reunite with Silver Phoenix and destroy Chen Yong? And destroy whatever chance Ai Ling has at happiness, at love? In this sequel to the acclaimed novel Silver Phoenix, four lives are woven together and four destinies become one, now and forever.

Waiting For The Rain (Laurel Leaf Books)

Tengo is the 10-year-old son of workers on Oom Koos’s large farm in the Transvaal. He longs to go to school like his friend Frikkie, who visits his uncle’s farm on holidays. But Tengo’s family is too poor to pay for the education that comes free to whites. He finally gets his wish at age 14. Tengo goes to live with his cousin in a squalid township outside Johannesburg and studies furiously. After three years, he is almost ready for college, but a year-long school boycott ruins his chances and he is drawn into the fight against apartheid. When he and Frikkie meet in a violent confrontation, Tengo realizes that he will carry on the struggle for freedom as a scholar, not a soldier. The writing here is powerful, evoking in minute detail daily life and the broad landscapes of the country.

Lost Boy, Lost Girl

One of thousands of children who fled strife in southern Sudan, John Bul Dau survived hunger, exhaustion, and violence. His wife, Martha, endured similar hardships. In this memorable book, the two convey the best of African values while relating searing accounts of famine and war. There’s warmth as well, in their humorous tales of adapting to American life. For its importance as a primary source, for its inclusion of the rarely told female perspective of Sudan’s lost children, for its celebration of human resilience, this is the perfect story to inform and inspire young readers.

See the review at WOW Review, Volume 5, Issue 2

Consumed

The thrilling sequel to POSSESSED finds 16-year-old Rayne still entwined in the creepy history of Morton’s Keep — and about to discover that she’s the only one who can stop the evil lurking there. Rayne’s countryside escape has proven to be anything but — the remote mansion house where she lives and works holds terrible secrets, and she feels trapped there. And when a new manager shows up, things take an even more sinister turn. Rayne doesn’t know who to trust — even the ghosts of Morton’s Keep seem to be warning her. It’s up to Rayne to overcome the ancient evil lurking here — but how?