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Lead by example. Let your children see you reading for pleasure in your spare time.
Summary: Horace Andrews is looking for some down time. He's still recovering from their battle in the Riven nest when Chloe arrives. They are needed in the Warren. Before they go, Horace's mom shares her secret: she was (is?) a Tuner. There is no time for asking questions, and Horace must carry them with him. When they arrive at the Academy, Horace and Chloe learn "something" looms on the horizon. It has the earmarks of a Keeper, but no one knows whether it is friend or foe. While the Wardens anticipated facing the Riven and Dr. Jericho again, there were others whose reappearance knocked them off guard. The second book of The Keepers series takes readers deep into the Warren and gives them their own special powers. This is a High Interest / Low Readability option.
Type of Reading: bedtime story, family reading, independent reading, read aloud book, remedial reader, reluctant reader
Recommended Age: read together: 9 and Up; 10 and Up
Interest Level: 9 and Up
Reading Level: 4.7
Young Reader Reaction: Review pending.
Adult Reader Reaction: There is absolutely no let down as the adventures continue and we learn more about the Wardens, their roles, tools, and mission. The author creates a sense of urgency for the reader not only with shifting scenes, but also in how he presents time. He immediately introduces new characters, before letting us catch up with Horace and Chloe. In Book 1, Horace is the main character, as we mostly see the world from his point of view. In The Harp and the Ravenvine, he is shifting to be a central character. Chloe moves closest to center stage, but we also get a more in-depth sense of Mrs. Hapsteade, Mr. Meister, Brian, and the various relationships within the Warren.
Pros: The race against time will keep readers on the edge of their seats. Their curiosity will keep them turning page after page.
Cons: There are a few new characters who add new skills and roles. For some readers, the additional detail and understanding how some of the Tan'ji work may get confusing.
Borrow or Buy: Buy. Book Two is more action packed as the first story!
Educational Themes: The story is set in Chicago. There are more references to places and topography that could be fun to track with a map. Setting the Wardens v. Riven aside, there are other scenes that invite conversation about choices that are not so black and white: Brian's role / responsibilities; Chloe's relationship with her family. With the exception of Horace, the Keepers being recruited appear to be orphans of a sort. This could open a discussion about gangs and how they work.
Notes: The publisher donated a copy of this book knowing that we would consider it for review and provide an independent, unbiased profile. This book will be given to a nonprofit to help readers in need.