Aug 31, 2016

Serafina and the Twisted Staff (Serafina 2) by Robert Beatty


book review rating 4 out of 5

In 1899, when an evil threatens all the humans and animals of the Blue Ridge Mountains, twelve-year-old Serafina, rat catcher for the Biltmore estate and the daughter of a shapeshifting mountain lion, must search deep inside herself and embrace the destiny that awaits her...continue at Goodreads

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IT COSTS ME twice as much to read Serafina and the Twisted Staff. I purchase one copy for myself, and one copy for my Goddaughter (who is also my niece). But, ssh. She doesn’t know yet, unless she’s reading this. In which case…SURPRISE, BABY GIRL!

In this dazzling and magical sequel, New York Times best selling author, Robert Beatty continues to weave an enchanting tale centered at Biltmore Estate, a magnificent and very real 250-bedroom mansion nestled in the forested mountains of Asheville, North Carolina. I was captivated by this heart-stopping adventure about thrilling secrets and dangerous mysteries—as a courageous Serafina embraces her destiny to overcome a darkness set into motion long before The Man in the Black Cloak (Serafina 1).

Despite the discovery of her origins, twelve-year-old Serafina finds herself lonelier and more confused than ever before as she struggles to find acceptance. With “large amber eyes, deeply angled cheekbones, and a shaggy mane,” Serafina is anything but ordinary. I felt her anguish as she is cast unwanted by those she loves because she doesn't quite fit in. She is too human to be safe in the forest with her catamount mother, and too wild to be with her human pa. Even her bond with best friend, Braeden Vanderbuilt, is tested to its limits.

Meanwhile as a conflicting Serafina tries to understand and embrace her two halves, a dark force is gathering at Biltmore Estate. A “tragedy” so great leaves a heartbroken Serafina fleeing blindly and deeply into the forest where she “comes face to face with the evil conflicting Biltmore.”

With a plot that is as twisty as its predecessor, this sequel kept me engaged in Serafina and Braeden’s adventure, even as it sets forth many more new mysteries. It is written in a way that explores nuances and yet speaks quite plainly—a marriage that will enchant both the young and the young at heart, including me and my Goddaughter.

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For a limited time, the hardcover is on sale!

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Do you enjoy Middle Grade (MG) books? Do you have a favorite? Least favorite?

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