A Box of Gargoyles
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that A Box of Gargoyles, sequel to The Cabinet of Earths, continues the Parisian adventures of Maya Davidson, who discovered in the first book that she comes from a long line of women with extraordinary powers. Once again, some of the story's creepier aspects -- for instance, the fact that Maya's evil uncle, vanquished in the first volume, is trying to restore his powers by killing her, as well as a scene of bones emerging from their graves to dance to Danse Macabre -- will delight some kids and give others nightmares. But along the way, readers will also get a stellar kid's-eye view of Parisian sights and sounds, as well as appealing, thoughtful looks at real-life issues from sibling rivalry to parents' mortality. Although this is a sequel, enough context is provided that it also works as a stand-alone story.
What's the story?
With the events of The Cabinet of Earths behind her, Berkeley kid Maya Davidson is finally starting to settle into her family's new life in Paris. Unfortunately, things don't stay peaceful for long: Strange things are happening around the city, starting with the unexplained hole that appears in the wall of her friend Valko's home, the Bulgarian embassy, and the sudden arrival of a pair of gargoyles and their beautiful egg. On her 13th birthday, Maya receives a mysterious letter suggesting that her supposedly vanquished evil uncle has put her under a spell to restore his life at the cost of her own. Adding to the grief, Valko's terrifying grandmother is about to take him back to live in Bulgaria to get in touch with his roots. And Maya's mother, a cancer survivor, keeps getting sick.
Is it any good?
With most of the world-building dealt with in the first book, this one gets on with the story, with a fast-moving tale that's sometimes funny, sometimes scary, and always emotionally real. The characters and their problems are engaging, surprising plot developments abound, and frequent forays into the attractions of Paris will whet the appetites of many future travelers. This is a textured, exciting venture.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about magic and fantasy. Why do you think stories of magical forces in today's world are so popular? How do Maya's adventures compare with other stories you've read?
Have you been to Paris or Bulgaria? Does reading this story make you want to visit those places?
Maya spends a lot of time worrying about her mother's health. Do you know any kids whose parents are seriously ill? How does this affect the kids?
Do you think Maya makes the right choice about using her powers?
|Topics:||Magic and fantasy, Friendship, Great boy role models, Great girl role models, Monsters, ghosts, and vampires|
|Publication date:||May 14, 2013|
|Number of pages:||368|
|Publisher's recommended age(s):||8 - 12|
|Available on:||Nook, Hardback, iBooks, Kindle|