The Golden Yarn

illus. by Cornelia Funke. 448p. (Reckless: Bk. 3). ebook available. Breathing Bks. 2015. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780989165624.
Gr 9 Up—The fantastical adventures of brothers Jacob and Will continue in this exciting installment in Funke's fairy tale-inspired series. Will's girlfriend Clara pricks her finger on a magical brooch, and when Will is unable to awaken her with a kiss, he goes through the mirror to enlist Jacob's help—but can't find him. Instead, Jacob's treasure-hunting rival, Nerron, kidnaps Will to get revenge on Jacob. Meanwhile, Jacob and the shape-shifting vixen Fox set off into the eastern part of the lands to rescue Will. The Dark Fairy is also fleeing from a false murder accusation. Mirrorlings, eerie humanlike figures made of glass and silver, hinder the brothers' search by attacking them and trying to smother them in silver. Jacob and Will come to understand that "and they lived happily ever after" is truly hard earned. All the characters grapple with heartbreak and betrayal and find that the Golden Yarn, the inseparable bond between lovers, does determine their destinies. Those who haven't read the previous books in the series may be confused by allusions to prior events, but those who have will be intrigued by this story set in a richly imagined world full of familiar fairy tale elements in a unique and compelling way.
VERDICT An absorbing read for fans of the previous works in this series.

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