Goblins on the Prowl

272p. S. & S./Aladdin. Jun. 2015. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781416914402; ebk. $10.99. ISBN 9781481441285.
Gr 3–6—A sequel 23 years in the making! William, from 1992's Goblins in the Castle (Aladdin), is back, and is now revered as "The William," because he freed the goblins from an imprisonment spell. He and his friend, Fauna, a girl who lives alone in the woods to hide her own terrible secret, have been invited to a party at Toad-in-a-Cage Castle to celebrate the anniversary of this momentous event. Unfortunately, the stone toad, (for whom the aforementioned castle is named) turns out to have a spell on it, too. When the pair unwittingly releases the magical toad from the spell, it springs to life and captures William, taking him deep into the forest. An unlikely crew sets out to help Fauna save him, including a ghost, an Igor (no one is quite sure what he is), and Bwoonhiwda, the Queen's strong-arm with an unfortunate speech impediment. This wildly imaginative tale stands alone, but will likely send many new fans on the hunt for the first book. With a fast pace and so many fun characters, it absolutely begs to be read aloud in an upper elementary classroom.
VERDICT Fauna is a heroine with heart; fantasy-adventure fans will be biting their nails and chuckling out loud with every twist and turn.

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