Rise of the Shadow

Crown. (Conjurers: Bk. 1). Jul. 2020. 240p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780553498653.
Gr 3-6–After years of living in Uncle Mordo’s mansion, siblings Emma and Alex find themselves in the middle of a mission to keep themselves safe while trying to save magic. Magic is fading from the world (both the Flatworld and the world of the Conjuring) and no one knows why. Emma and Alex’s parents may have held a key to solving the mystery, but these “anthropologists” were killed in an accident when the siblings were young. With their Jimjarian named Pimawa (a pet rabbit turned magical guide), the siblings face old friends who may in fact be foes, flying skeletons called Rag-O-Racs, and the Shadow Conjurer himself. The suspenseful conclusion paves the way for an action-packed continuation of their journey. Anderson weaves plentiful grayscale illustrations throughout the narrative that will help readers picture the otherworldly setting and characters.
VERDICT Middle grade fans of magical mysteries will enjoy this exciting and well-paced series debut.

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