Thursday, March 31, 2011

Rutkoski, Marie. The Celestial Globe

Rutkoski, Marie The Celestial Globe
Farrar Strauss see macmillan children's pub group 2010 296 16.99 978-0374-31027-1 hs Magic-Fiction; Romanies - Fiction; Fantasy VG-BN Kronos Chronicles: Book II

Petra and her friends face Prince Rodolfo of Bohemia, who will do anything to possess the Celestial Globe, a powerful magical object. In “The Celestial Globe,” readers quickly derive the back story to “The Cabinet of Wonders,” (the first book in the Kronos Chronicles), from context. In a well-balanced mix of history and fantasy, Rukoski (who studied English Renaissance literature at Harvard) has the infamous and mysterious John Dee rescue Petra from Prince Rudolfo of Prague to provide her with sanctuary and training (for her unique psi abilities) in Elizabethan England.

Petra evolves into a more mature character under Dee’s tutelage -- and with the addition of a love-interest, her fencing master. Sparks fly between Petra’s earlier companions, Tomik (a glassmaker), and Neel (a gypsy/pirate) who team up to rescue her. Astrophil, Petra’s talking mechanical spider, is an interesting character (a well-read arachnid).

But the focus of the story is the mystery of the Celestial Globe, which is the key to portals throughout the world. The user steps across a threshold into another country, saving enormous quantities of travel time. Combined with the element of surprise and an aggressive sovereign, the Globe could also serve as a powerful weapon of war.

The characters race to decipher clues and capture the Globe. Murder, Court intrigues, spy-masters, and nefarious characters abound. Petra’s faith and trust are tested over and over. As she comes closer to solving the mystery, she wonders if there is any one she can trust?
Fantasy Welliver(3), Hilary

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