A quirky, fast-paced urban fantasy by esteemed author Jane YolenAliera Carstairs just doesn't fit in. She's always front and center at the fencing studio, but at school she's invisible. And she's fine with that . . . until Avery Castle walks into her first period biology class. Avery may seem perfect now, but will he end up becoming her Prince Charming or just a toad?
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 160 pages, chiefly ill
- Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
- Publication Date: 07/05/2010
- Category: Fantasy
- ISBN: 9781596432796
Showing 1 - 5 of 18 reviews.
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Review by kayceel
Aliera loves fencing and is "meh" about the rest of her life. She doesn't feel like she fits in at school, though she would love to if only for a chance to spend time with Avery, the beautiful new boy who ends up as her lab partner. This is charming, fun and lovely. Aliera is color-blind, so most of the book is drawn and colored in grayscale. However, one afternoon in Grand Central Station, Aliera discovers that the cheap practice foil her mother found at a tag sale is actually a magical weapon, and suddenly she can see in color - well, she sees all the magical beings around her in color, that is.Aliera is a compelling, strong female character, and I look forward to more of her adventures.
Review by Jellyn
The main character, whose name I've already forgotten, is a fencer. Her mother picks up a practice weapon for her at a sale, so it's real cheap. But it has this weird ruby attached to the hilt. Soon enough, she's putting on her fencing mask, seeing weird things, and fighting them with her weapon (you don't call it a sword in fencing, I guess).It was an interesting little story. I could like the main character and I learned things about fencing that I didn't know before.The artwork is pretty cool. The main character is severely colorblind, so it's all grey tones. Until she puts the mask on. Then the weird fairy and fantastical creatures are in color.I'd definitely recommend it for any tweens or teens who like graphic novels.
Review by Girl_Detective
A good beginning entry of a series. I look forward to more.
Review by fyrefly98
Review by frood42
Aliera Carstairs is an excellent fencer, but outside of fencing she is awkward and socially inept. When a date with the attractive Avery Castle goes horribly wrong, Aliera puts on her fencing mask and discovers a fairy realm that only she can see and must defend. Fencing provides an intriguing premise around which the fantasy story develops, especially because it logically allows for a modern New York City teen to be skilled in swordplay, and Aliera narrates the story with a unique and entertaining voice. The art is fun and compliments the story, highlighting both Aliera's isolation and identity as a fencer, for even outside of class and competition, she stands as if she has a foil in hand, and small fencing figures are frequently used around the borders to illustrate how Aliera is feeling during her interactions with Avery. Background details, such as a crow lurking outside windows, hint at the existence of the fantasy world. The majority of the images are grayscale, reflecting Aliera's own colorblindness, but the fantasy realm springs to life with bright colors. Though this graphic novel is entertaining and interesting, the climax was not very exciting, and the fantasy realm is only briefly revealed, giving the story a feeling of being very incomplete. This is the first in a series, and this particular installment felt more like it relies too heavily on the next book, instead of being a stand-alone story. Good for junior high and high school readers.
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