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Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 02/01/2014 Gr 5–8—Bee is apprenticed at a young age to a weak and evil magician named Slowin, who steals her true name on her 12th birthday and awakens a wild and malevolent magic that transforms Slowin and his minions into fearsome creatures who invade a castle and devour its inhabitants. Bee is saved from the sorceror's wrath by Cabbage, an apprentice to the great wizard Flaxfield. Together they must figure out how to stop the evil man from growing even more powerful. This stand-alone prequel to Dragonborn (Bloomsbury, 2012) is distinguished by its vivid cast of characters and multilayered relationships. Magical elements are rather intense: a nasty bit of sludge coughed up by Bee becomes a vile, slurpy, shape-shifting carnivore; a river of beetles strips the flesh from every living thing it encounters; Cabbage dribbles tiny stars from his fingers when he's distracted. The fine writing and compelling plot are sure to enthrall readers of high fantasy. Give to fans of Tamora Pierce's "Circle of Magic" (Scholastic) series and Angie Sage's "Septimus Heap" (HarperCollins) series.—Eva Mitnick, Los Angeles Public Library - Copyright 2014 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.