Glass Puzzle
by Brodien-jones, Christine






While spending the summer in Tenby, Wales, with their grandfather, American cousins Zo and Ian assemble an old glass puzzle, inadvertently unleashing ancient forces that threaten the island and allowing them to travel into the past.





CHRISTINE BRODIEN-JONES studied writing at Emerson College in Boston, and has been a journalist, an editor, and a teacher. She now splits her time between Gloucester, Massachusetts, and Deer Isle, Maine. Look for her other book for young readers, The Owl Keeper, available from Delacorte Press.





With its unexplored tunnels, secret societies, ties to pirates, and folklore about Wythernsea, an island that disappeared off the coast of Wales in 1349, the mystical coastal town of Tenby is just where 11-year-old Zo and her cousin Ian love to spend the summer with Granddad. When Zo finds an odd piece of glass and looks through it, she notices some of the town's citizens now possess a third eye and appear to be monsters. With the help of Ian's methodical scrutiny, the cousins discover the glass is part of a puzzle, which serves as a portal to parallel worlds, including Wythernsea. While they can visit the lost island, the portal also allows Scravens, monsters that inhabit humans, to enter Tenby and take over its residents. If Zo and Ian can find an ancient rune stone and the Scraven leader before Midsummer's Day, they may be able to defeat the monsters and close the portal for good. Although some plot points are obvious, the nonstop adventures and fantastical setting should keep readers entertained. Copyright 2013 Booklist Reviews.





Cousins Zoé and Ian must find the key to a glass puzzle or risk the destruction of their Welsh town. Zoé Badger loves summering with her cousin, Ian, at their grandfather's house in small, seaside Tenby. But things take an unexpected turn when they find an antique glass puzzle and unwittingly release Scravens-evil creatures with a craterous third eye and massive wings-into Tenby. The cousins, in turn, are magically transported to Wythernsea, an island long submerged underwater, whence the Scravens come. There they learn that Scravens are taking over the bodies of Tenby inhabitants-as well as terrorizing Wythernsea-and that they must save both towns from the creatures. To a gratingly earnest third-person narration, readers follow the adventures of Zoé, Ian and their friends as they attempt to defeat the Scravens. Adults either too daft or unwilling to be much help, and who behave in erratic ways, shake the credibility of this far-fetched fantasy. Spot illustrations by Santoso are reminiscent of Mary GrandPré's art for the Harry Potter series but lack her accurate representation of characters. The interesting premise is bogged down by narration that doesn't seem to fully trust readers' intelligence and by characters who defy credibility, keeping it from rising above the bevy of middle-grade fantasies. (Fantasy. 9-12) Copyright Kirkus 2013 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.






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