How One Girl Will Change the Fate of a Kingdom

By Juliet Marillier

Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers, $16.99, 416 pages

Shadowfell is Neryn’s last hope after she is left alone in the Kingdom of Alban where being too clever with a needle or singing too well is cause enough for death. The only people allowed to use magic are King Keldec’s closest confidantes. But the things they do are twisted and worse than killing. Neryn faces a bigger danger because she has something the King wants. Her particular gift could bring the Good Folk to the King’s feet if she is caught. Shadowfell may be the only place where Neryn could escape the king’s grasp, but getting there will be difficult. ||And it may not even exist.

“I stared, frozen with shock. Flint stared back, his face white as linen. His mouth was bracketed by grooves that suggested a long, hard journey. Shadows danced, sending a wavering pattern across his features.”

The biggest challenge she will face lies within her. Trust isn’t easy to come by in a place where anyone could be a spy, but it will be necessary to Neryn’s survival. The amazing storyline carries the book, making it easy to ignore the few instances of stilted writing. Full of adventure, Neryn is a strong character with many sides. Readers will enjoy accompanying Neryn on her epic journey as she discovers friends in unlikely shapes and sizes, and finds a place where she can be her complete self.

Reviewed By Isabel Hernandez

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