Coville - Book Reviews

***** - Excellent
**** - Good
*** - Okay
** - Bad
* - Terrible
+ - Half-star

A Glory of Unicorns
Bruce Coville, Editor
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Anthology/Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: Perhaps no other creature embodies the spirit of fantasy more than the venerated unicorn. Wild, untamed, and beautiful, unicorns can be found around the globe, in the strangest and most unexpected of places. Wherever they step, the world changes, and whoever chances to see them will never be the same. The noted author has collected a number of unicorn stories.

REVIEW: This is one of a new round of anthologies edited by Coville, on subjects from aliens to magic. Once again, Coville has compiled a winning anthology. He says at the start that these aren't about "sappy" unicorns, and he's right. These are unicorns at their fiercest, wildest, and most powerful. If you want meek, dewy-eyed creatures in rot-your-teeth saccharine tales, look elsewhere. This collection is a must-have for any unicorn lover... or any fantasy lover, for that matter.

You might also enjoy:
Strange Happenings (Avi, YA Fiction - Five stories of lives transformed)
A Treasury of Witches and Wizards (David Bennet, editor, YA Fiction - Stories of witches and wizards)
The Dragon Book (Jack Dann and Gardner Dozois, editors, Fiction - 19 dragon tales by modern writers)
Cats in Space (Bill Fawcett, editor, Fiction - Sci-fi cat tales)
We Three Dragons (Bill Fawcett, editor - A holiday-themed trio of dragon tales)
Dragons Composed (James Ferris, editor, Fiction - A dragon-themed anthology)
Some of the Best from Tor.com: 2012 Edition (Liz Gorinsky, David G. Hartwell, and Patrick Nielsen Hayden, editors, Fiction - A collection of short stories from modern masters)
Dragons: The Greatest Stories (Martin H. Greenberg, editor, Fiction - Short stories about dragons from popular authors)
The Anything Box (Zenna Henderson, Fiction - A collection of peculiar short stories)
Fantasy Stories (Diana Wynne Jones, editor, YA Fiction - Fantasy stories and story exerpts)
Flights of Fantasy (Mercedes Lackey, editor, Fiction - Stories of raptors and ravens)
Hot Chocolate for the Unicorn (Mary E. Lowd, Fiction - A woman prepares for two special visitors)
Dragonfold (Tyrean Martinson, YA Fiction - A collection of stories, poems, and excerpts)
Catfantastic I-IV (Andre Norton and Martin H. Greenberg, editors, Fiction - Fantasy and sci-fi tales of cats)
Rampant (Diana Peterfreund, YA Fiction - A nodern teen girl learns that unicorns are not only real, they're venomous, vicious carnivores)
Eyes Like Sky And Coal And Moonlight (Cat Rambo, Fiction - Short fantasy stories)
Rogue Wave (Theodore Taylor, YA Fiction - Stories of the sea and military action)
Book of Enchantments (Patricia Wrede, YA Fiction - Short story collection)
Here, There be Dragons (Jane Yolen, YA Fiction - Stories of dragons)

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Bruce Coville's Book Of...
(Book of Book of Aliens I & II; Book of Ghosts I & II; Book of Magic I & II; Monsters I & II; Book of Nightmares I & II; Book of Spine-Tinglers I & II)
Bruce Coville, Editor
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Anthology/Fantasy/Sci-Fi
*****

DESCRIPTION: Bruce Coville, best-selling children's book author, compiles short stories for themed anthologies from a variety of sources. Some are classics, some are from noted young adult authors, others are first tries from unknown writers in the field.

REVIEW: I enjoyed the vast majority of these stories, unlike the last few "adult" anthologies I've read. One reason is that Coville collects stories which he thinks fit the theme and are interesting, while the "adult" anthology editors seem hung up on publishing stories by their "friends" and popular authors. He ran one Book for all the themes first, then popular demand prompted a second series. In the second round of Books, Coville tried his hand at a serialized story, each section incorporating the theme of the book in which it appeared. The result, "The Monsters of Morley Manor," was one of the weakest tales presented, being disjointed and occasionally forced. Other than that, these stories demonstrate just why I continue to read Young Adult fiction. They can tell a tale of surprising depth in a medium that doesn't require the meaning-of-the- universe drivel and pointless orgies that are so prevalent in the "grown-up" fiction books I've picked up lately. Some of the stories are fun, others serious, and a few are downright disturbing (even to me, and I'm over 21.) Not all of them have happy endings. I add that as a warning to people who only like "happily ever after" stories. (I know someone like that...) That's one more thing I like about Coville; he doesn't talk down to his audience, nor does he publish stories that do. Great reads, all of them.

You might also enjoy:
Strange Happenings (Avi, YA Fiction - Five stories of lives transformed)
A Treasury of Witches and Wizards (David Bennet, editor, YA Fiction - Stories of witches and wizards)
The Dragon Book (Jack Dann and Gardner Dozois, editors, Fiction - 19 dragon tales by modern writers)
The Very Best of Charles de Lint (Charles de Lint, Fiction - Collected stories of magic old and new by the noted fantasy author)
Fifty-One Tales (Lord Dunsany, Fiction - A collection of short tales by the celebrated Irish author)
Cats in Space (Bill Fawcett, editor, Fiction - Sci-fi cat tales)
We Three Dragons (Bill Fawcett, editor - A holiday-themed trio of dragon tales)
Dragons Composed (James Ferris, editor, Fiction - A dragon-themed anthology)
Some of the Best from Tor.com: 2012 Edition (Liz Gorinsky, David G. Hartwell, and Patrick Nielsen Hayden, editors, Fiction - A collection of short stories from modern masters)
Dragons: The Greatest Stories (Martin H. Greenberg, editor, Fiction - Short stories about dragons from popular authors)
The Anything Box (Zenna Henderson, Fiction - A collection of peculiar short stories)
Fantasy Stories (Diana Wynne Jones, editor, YA Fiction - Fantasy stories and story exerpts)
The Best of Damon Knight (Damon Knight, Fiction - Sci-fi stories from aliens to time travel, including the classic "To Serve Man")
By Sword, Stave or Stylus (Andrew Knighton, Fiction - A collection of fantasy short stories)
Flights of Fantasy (Mercedes Lackey, editor, Fiction - Stories of raptors and ravens)
Dragonfold (Tyrean Martinson, YA Fiction - A collection of stories, poems, and excerpts)
The Flower of Scotland collections (William Meikle, Fiction - Short stories ranging from silly to disturbing)
The Good, the Bad, and the Utterly Screwed (Steff Metal, Fiction - Five absurd little tales)
The Book of Dragons (Edith Nesbit, YA Fiction - Original fairy tales about all manner of dragons)
Catfantastic I-IV (Andre Norton and Martin H. Greenberg, editors, Fiction - Fantasy and sci-fi tales of cats)
Eyes Like Sky And Coal And Moonlight (Cat Rambo, Fiction - Short fantasy stories)
Rogue Wave (Theodore Taylor, YA Fiction - Stories of the sea and military action)
Book of Enchantments (Patricia Wrede, YA Fiction - Short story collection)
Here, There be Dragons (Jane Yolen, YA Fiction - Stories of dragons)

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Chamber of Horrors: Amulet of Doom
(The Chamber of Horrors series, Book 1)
Bruce Coville
Pocket Books
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: As long as she can remember, Marilyn's Aunt Zenobia has been off on some adventurous journey or another. A visit from her means exotic gifts and fascinating stories, tales which her conservative parents rarely approve of. Marilyn wonders if she'll ever do half of the things her aging aunt has done. She should be careful what she wishes for, as the latest - and last - gift from her aunt, a strange amulet, has a history so wild even Zenobia cannot guess at it. To hold it is to risk a curse of death... or worse.

REVIEW: The first installment of the Chamber of Horrors foursome (stand-alone stories of terror and the supernatural, pitched at an older audience than most of Coville's books) lives up to its title amply. A great tale, full of unexpected twists and dangers, I enjoyed it thoroughly. I must repeat the warning to sensitive and especially young readers, however. This one gets dark, as do all the Chamber of Horrors titles.

You might also enjoy:
Casting Shadows (J. Kelley Anderson, Fiction - An angry young man turns to magic for vengeance, only to find himself defending the people he wanted to destroy)
Something Wicked This Way Comes (Ray Bradbury, YA Fiction - Two small-town boys find a terrible secret behind a traveling October carnival)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Six tales of ordinary children who find themselves in peculiar, terrifying situations)
Rough Draft (Michael Robertson Jr, Fiction - Stranded in a mountain cabin, three horror writers confront a deadly terror)
Dracula (Bram Stoker, Fiction - An evil force from Transylvania comes to London seeking fresh prey)
The Bartimaeus trilogy (Jonathan Stroud, YA Fiction - A humiliated apprentice summons a djinni for vengeance, but learns he's in for more than he bargained for)
The Screaming Staircase (Jonathan Stroud, YA Fiction - In a haunted modern-day England, three talented kids confront horrors living and dead)
Game Over - Extended Edition (Todd Thorne, YA? Fiction - Trapped between his divorced parents, a boy turns to VR terror simulations for escape)
Glimpse (Steven B. Whibley, YA Fiction - A boy finds himself burdened with the ability to predict death)

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Chamber of Horrors: Spirits and Spells
(The Chamber of Horrors series, Book 2)
Bruce Coville
Pocket Books
Fiction, YA Fantasy
****

DESCRIPTION: Travis, Tansy, and their friends have just obtained what's supposed to be the greatest role-playing adventure game of all time: Spirits and Spells. What better place to give it a trial run than the run-down Gulbrandsen house, slated for demolition? All the cobwebs, dust, creaks, and cracks will really bring the game to life. Or maybe the game will spring to life in spite of the atmosphere...

REVIEW: This was my least favorite story in the series. Though it had some strong points, the plot felt forced and contrived, the setup rushed. A game comes to life: it doesn't spring to life in an original way as far as a plot goes, and neither does the way it plays out. Still, it's not a bad story. I'm just used to more from Coville.

You might also enjoy:
Demons Don't Dream (Piers Anthony, Fiction - Bickering demons rig a computer game to transport Earth kids to the magical realm of Xanth)
God Game (Andrew M. Greeley, Fiction - A computer game connects to another world)
The Tough Guide to Fantasyland (Diana Wynne Jones, Fiction - Humorous fantasy travel guide)
Caverns of Socrates (Dennis L. McKiernan, Fiction - The AI system hosting a virtual reality role-playing game takes on a dangerous mind of its own)
Dream Park (Larry Niven, Fiction - A futuristic theme park, featuring 3D holographic role-playing arenas, hides a killer)
Only You Can Save Mankind (Terry Pratchett, YA Fiction - The aliens in a popular computer game surrender to a young player, demanding safe passage "home")
Rough Draft (Michael Robertson Jr, Fiction - Stranded in a mountain cabin, three horror writers confront a deadly terror)
The Dragon Box (Katie W. Stewart, YA Fiction - A game pulls a boy into an imperiled magical land)
Dracula (Bram Stoker, Fiction - An evil force from Transylvania comes to London seeking fresh prey)
The Screaming Staircase (Jonathan Stroud, YA Fiction - In a haunted modern-day England, three talented kids confront horrors living and dead)
Game Over - Extended Edition (Todd Thorne, YA? Fiction - Trapped between his divorced parents, a boy turns to VR terror simulations for escape)
Glimpse (Steven B. Whibley, YA Fiction - A boy finds himself burdened with the ability to predict death)

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Chamber of Horrors: Eyes of the Tarot
(The Chamber of Horrors series, Book 3)
Bruce Coville
Pocket Books
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: During a day of lazy exploration in her grandmother's attic, Bonnie discovers an ancient tarot deck. Just for fun, she starts to give readings with it... surprisingly accurate readings. There are powers in the tarot that aren't to be toyed with, and Bonnie soon finds herself caught up in struggles that are far beyond her abilities to understand, let alone deal with. The answers are in the cards, but so is the danger.

REVIEW: This one was my favorite of the series. Great concept, great characters, great story. If you're only going to read one of these books, I suggest this one.

You might also enjoy:
Something Wicked This Way Comes (Ray Bradbury, YA Fiction - Two small-town boys find a terrible secret behind a traveling October carnival)
Teller (Chris Howard, YA Fiction - A teen boy learns he can manipulate reality with stories and paintings)
Tarot for Writers (Caroline Kenner, Writing - Using tarot cards to create and enhance stories)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Six tales of ordinary children who find themselves in peculiar, terrifying situations)
Rough Draft (Michael Robertson Jr, Fiction - Stranded in a mountain cabin, three horror writers confront a deadly terror)
Dracula (Bram Stoker, Fiction - An evil force from Transylvania comes to London seeking fresh prey)
The Screaming Staircase (Jonathan Stroud, YA Fiction - In a haunted modern-day England, three talented kids confront horrors living and dead)
Game Over - Extended Edition (Todd Thorne, YA? Fiction - Trapped between his divorced parents, a boy turns to VR terror simulations for escape)
Glimpse (Steven B. Whibley, YA Fiction - A boy finds himself burdened with the ability to predict death)

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Chamber of Horrors: Waiting Spirits
(The Chamber of Horrors series, Book 4)
Bruce Coville
Pocket Books
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: As far as vacation spots go, Grandma's house on Sayers Island isn't the best. The weather has been dreary all summer, and both Lisa and her little sister Carrie are feeling the strain of being housebound. For fun, their grandmother teaches them about "automatic writing," an old parlor game much like a séance, where a person in a trancelike state "writes" answers to questions asked of lurking spirits. One should be very careful about playing such games in a house with real ghosts, however... especially ghosts with unfinished business.

REVIEW: Another great story from Bruce Coville, only marginally less absorbing than Eyes of the Tarot. My biggest problem with it is that it's the last of the series.

You might also enjoy:
Devil's Race (Avi, YA Fiction - A boy is haunted by an evil ancestor who yearns to live again)
The Supernaturalist (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A near-death experience grants a boy the ability to see invisible entities)
The Wish List (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A teen girl's ghost is deemed too good for Hell but too bad for Heaven)
Sabriel (Garth Nix, YA Fiction - A girl's necromancer father sends an urgent warning from beyond the gates of Death)
A Cry Out of Time (J. L. Redington, YA Fiction - On vacation in Oregon, a girl tries to help a young ghost)
Ghost Ship (Deitlof Reiche, YA Fiction - The figurehead of a lost ship hides a deadly secret)
Rough Draft (Michael Robertson Jr, Fiction - Stranded in a mountain cabin, three horror writers confront a deadly terror)
Dracula (Bram Stoker, Fiction - An evil force from Transylvania comes to London seeking fresh prey)
The Screaming Staircase (Jonathan Stroud, YA Fiction - In a haunted modern-day England, three talented kids confront horrors living and dead)
Game Over - Extended Edition (Todd Thorne, YA? Fiction - Trapped between his divorced parents, a boy turns to VR terror simulations for escape)
Glimpse (Steven B. Whibley, YA Fiction - A boy finds himself burdened with the ability to predict death)
The Ghost Witch (Betty Ren Wright, YA Fiction - A girl finds that her new home is haunted by a witch)

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The Dragonslayers
Bruce Coville
Pocket Books
Fiction, YA Fantasy
***

DESCRIPTION: When a witch creates a ferocious dragon that stalks the Forest of Doom, the King must send someone to slay it. His daughter, Wilhelmina, desperately wants some adventure, but the King instead calls in his three best knights - all of whom have petty excuses preventing them from sallying forth. Thus, the aging squire Elizar and the small page Brian, the only two with the courage to step forward, find themselves appointed Dragonslayers. The princess has her own plans to face the beast, however... but dragons are no small things, and slaying them is no easy task. Do any of these would-be heroes stand a chance of defeating the beast?

REVIEW: This wasn't a bad little story. I didn't think there was quite as much to it as some of Coville's other tales, but it was okay. One of the big plot twists was quite transparent to me, but I liked how he worked another one in subtly. Children would probably like it better than I did.

You might also enjoy:
The Dragonslayer's Apprentice (David Calder, YA Fiction - A determined girl apprentices herself to a dragonslayer)
Dragon's Keep (Janet Lee Carey, YA Fiction - A princess with a dragon-claw finger faces malevolent dragons)
The Last Dragonslayer (Jasper Fforde - The prophecised slayer of the last dragon in the Ununited Kingdoms may be a foundling girl)
Dragon Killer (Rob May, Fiction - A multitalented woman in a fantasy world investigates rumors of dragons on a remote island)
The Hero and the Crown (Robin McKinley, YA Fiction - A princess discovers a talent for dragon slaying)
The Book of Dragons (Edith Nesbit, YA Fiction - Original fairy tales about all manner of dragons)
Dragonheart (Charles Edward Pogue, Fiction - A cynical dragonslayer teams up with the last dragon to defeat an evil king)
No Such Thing As Dragons (Philip Reeve, YA Fiction - A mute boy follows his charlatan "dragon hunter" master to a mountain where a real beast awaits)
Deltora Quest (Emily Rodda, YA Fiction - Young heroes in a fractured land undertake a dangerous, monster-filled quest)
The Princess and the Firedrake (Jim Stinson, YA Fiction - Cursed by being too clever, a banished princess must save her kingdom from an angry dragon)
The Hobbit (J. R. R. Tolkien, YA? Fiction - A reluctant hobbit joins a company of dwarves in a quest to slay the great dragon Smaug)
Here, There be Dragons (Jane Yolen, YA Fiction - Anthology of dragon stories)

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Half-Human
Bruce Coville, Editor
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Anthology/Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: This anthology features short stories about humans who are more than human: a boy with hawk wings, a centaur foal, a girl with dragon's blood, and more exotic human hybrids.

REVIEW: Coville assembles another great anthology of thought-provoking stories. Unlike his earlier anthologies (the Bruce Coville's Book of... books), these tales have a uniformly deeper, darker overtone, and will likely appeal to an older audience. Seeing how adept he is at finding stories that explore the unusual or bizarre potentials of his themes, I often wish he'd compile a cat or dog story anthology; surely he could find one cat story without nine lives or Egypt as its premise, or a dog story where the dogs aren't killed by their master, saving their master, or both.

You might also enjoy:
The Animorphs series (K. A. Applegate, YA Fiction - To protect Earth from invaders, a dying alien gives human children the ability to morph into animals)
Dragons Wild (Robert Asprin, Fiction - A college-grad slacker learns he has powers he never dreamed of when he discovers his dragon ancestry)
Strange Happenings (Avi, YA Fiction - Five tales of people transformed)
The Jaguar Princess (Clare Bell, Fiction - A slave girl among the Aztecs demonstrates peculiar abilities and terrifying transformations)
The Last Dragonlord (Joanne Bertin, Fiction - The dragonlords' twin souls grant them near-immortality and the ability to shift to dragon form)
Jaguar Sun (Martha Bourke, YA Fiction - A teen girl meets her jaguar spirit guide and learns that she may be instrumental in saving the world)
An American Werewolf in Hoboken (Dakota Cassidy, Fiction - Cursed alpha werewolf Max meets his human life mate when she rescues him from death row at the animal shelter)
Firefly Hollow (T. L. Haddix, Fiction - Burdened with shifter powers, a reclusive man in rural midcentury Kentucky meets a persistent lady neighbor)
Tangled Tides (Karen Amanda Hooper, YA Fiction - Turned into a mermaid on her eighteenth birthday, a girl faces a dark, inescapable destiny)
Pride's Run (Cat Kalen, YA Fiction - A teen werewolf, enslaved by a drug lord, makes a desperate run for freedom)
Burned (Amber Kallyn, Fiction - A shapeshifting dragon falls for a firefighter while investigating unnatural arsons)
The Leopard's Daughter (Lee Killough, Fiction - In prehistoric Africa, a warrior girl with a leopard's soul seeks acceptance among humans)
By Sword, Stave or Stylus (Andrew Knighton, Fiction - A collection of fantasy short stories)
Freaks! How to Draw Fantastic Fantasy Creatures (Steve Miller, YA? Art - How to draw "furries," anthropomorphic animals)
Testament of the Dragon (Margaret Weis, YA? Fiction - A man strikes a deal with the last Western dragon, enabling him to shift to half-dragon form to do his master's bidding)

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The Monster's Ring
(A Magic Shop Book, Book 1)
Bruce Coville
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
****

DESCRIPTION: Scrawny Russell, a bully magnet, struggles with an overprotective mother and a father who is a pathological speech-maker. His one love in life is monsters, so he's thrilled when he finds the Monster's Ring in old Mr. Elives's magic shop. It's supposed to turn you into a real monster! It's just a cheap gimmick, he thinks, as he slips the ring with the eerie green stone on his finger and recites the incantation. Then, he realizes that he's growing hair... and horns...
The ring is quite real, and Russell is overjoyed to learn that he can change into a monster and back again at will. Magic was never meant to be a plaything, though, and everything has consequences. This is either going the be the best Halloween ever or the worst mistake of his life. (Also titled Russel Troy, Monster Boy.)

REVIEW: A fast book, it's aimed at a slightly younger audience than the others in this series. Still, I liked it for what it was. Russell learns that magic isn't a toy, and you don't have to have horns and fangs to stand up for yourself. A fun story that doesn't end so neatly and sweetly as some young adult authors might have written it.

You might also enjoy:
The Animorphs series (K. A. Applegate, YA Fiction - To protect Earth from invaders, a dying alien gives human children the ability to morph into animals)
Crenshaw (Katherine Applegate, YA Fiction - A logic-driven boy's imaginary friend returns to his life)
Strange Happenings (Avi, YA Fiction - Five tales of people transformed)
The Last Dragonlord (Joanne Bertin, Fiction - The dragonlords' twin souls grant them near-immortality and the ability to shift to dragon form)
A Boy's Best Book of Magic (David Castlewitz, YA? Fiction - A magic book transports a boy and his mother to the days of his grandfather's youth, to witness the roots of family abuse)
The Very Best of Charles de Lint (Charles de Lint, Fiction - Collected stories of magic old and new by the noted fantasy author)
The Fire Rose (Mercedes Lackey, Fiction - A turn-of-the-century mage, disfigured by a botched transformation spell, summons a female scholar to help him find a cure)
Freaks! How to Draw Fantastic Fantasy Creatures (Steve Miller, YA? Art - How to draw "furries," anthropomorphic animals)
Dragon Magic (Andre Norton, YA Fiction - A mysterious jigsaw puzzle pulls four boys into magical tales of legend and dragons)
Where The Wild Things Are (Maurice Sendak, YA Picture Book - Sent to bed without supper, an unruly boy imagines himself King of the Wild Things)
The Dragon Box (Katie W. Stewart, YA Fiction - A game pulls a boy into an imperiled magical land)
The Crimson-Eyed Dragon (D. M. Trink, YA Fiction - A teen boy discovers secrets tied to a silver dragon statue from an antique store)
Testament of the Dragon (Margaret Weis, YA? Fiction - A man strikes a deal with the last Western dragon, enabling him to shift to half-dragon form to do his master's bidding)

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Jennifer Murdley's Toad
(A Magic Shop Book, Book 2)
Bruce Coville
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: Jennifer Murdley thinks she is ugly, and longs to be beautiful. Though her family tries to be supportive, they just don't understand what it's like to hate looking in mirrors and long for something you know can never be yours; after all, Mom and Dad and even her little brother are comely. When she has to write a paper on a pet for school, she goes looking for one, and finds Mr. Elives's magic shop. The strange old man sells her a toad. Disenchanted, she takes her purchase home... only to have the toad start talking to her as soon as they leave the store. Soon, she learns that the warty amphibian has secrets and enemies that date back for centuries. Those enemies aren't through looking for him or the treasure he hides, and Jennifer finds that she's in for more than she ever bargained for.

REVIEW: More people should read this. It has a lot to say about the difference between physical beauty and real beauty, a difference Jennifer struggles with on a daily basis, as do other characters in their own ways. Neat characters, imaginative situations, and a good ending make this a great book.

You might also enjoy:
Crenshaw (Katherine Applegate, YA Fiction - A logic-driven boy's imaginary friend returns to his life)
Heart of a Tiger (Marsha Diane Arnold, YA Picture Book - A small, gray kitten wants a tiger's name on Naming Day)
The Frog Princess (E. D. Baker, YA Fiction - A clumsy princess turns into a frog when she kisses an enchanted prince)
The Throwaway Princess (Elinor Busby, YA Fiction - A princess's lame foot disqualifies her from the crown)
Dragon's Keep (Janet Lee Carey, YA Fiction - A princess is born with a dragon-claw finger, which her mother determines to hide)
A Boy's Best Book of Magic (David Castlewitz, YA? Fiction - A magic book transports a boy and his mother to the days of his grandfather's youth, to witness the roots of family abuse)
The Very Best of Charles de Lint (Charles de Lint, Fiction - Collected stories of magic old and new by the noted fantasy author)
Fairest (Gail Carson Levine, YA Fiction - Blessed with a beautiful voice and sharp mind, a girl is ashamed of her ugly face)
Dragon Magic (Andre Norton, YA Fiction - A mysterious jigsaw puzzle pulls four boys into magical tales of legend and dragons)
The Dragon Box (Katie W. Stewart, YA Fiction - A game pulls a boy into an imperiled magical land)
The Crimson-Eyed Dragon (D. M. Trink, YA Fiction - A teen boy discovers secrets tied to a silver dragon statue from an antique store)
Dragon's Fire, Wizard's Flame (Michael Mennenga, YA Fiction - A young dragon, outcast for his inability to breath fire, leaves the dragon valley to "find his flame")

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Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher
(A Magic Shop Book, Book 3)
Bruce Coville
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: Jeremy loves to draw, even though he thinks his art teacher - an old stick-in-the-mud who makes the class draw boring still life compositions and frowns on Jeremy's dragon obsession - hates him. When he finds the strangely beautiful, colorful sphere in Mr. Elives' magic shop, he knows he has to buy it. It turns out that the sphere is a dragon's egg. By purchasing it, he has taken on an awesome responsibility to hatch and raise a young dragon until it can return to its proper dimension. The young artist just might have taken on more than he can handle, but it's too late to reconsider once he has a growing young mouth to feed.

REVIEW: My mother picked this one up at a sale of "banned books" several years ago. Apparently, some people are so insecure in their own beliefs that they feel compelled to suppress any mention of anything outside their narrow view of "right" and "truth," such as magic and dragons... but I digress. Anyway, she though it was great and insisted that I give it a try, since I'm such a dragon-lover. It was with some trepidation that I picked up this "kid's book" - only to find myself hooked. Something about it struck a chord with me. One thing I really liked was the ending. In this, and all of his books, Coville doesn't just have magic go away forever at the end. It leaves a lasting mark on those who touch it even once. You don't outgrow it, and you don't forget it. You're also never too old to experience it for the first time, as Jeremy's father discovers.
(Incidentally, this is the story that made me realize that Young Adult books still have magic in them, even if I'm a "grown-up.")

You might also enjoy:
Crenshaw (Katherine Applegate, YA Fiction - A logic-driven boy's imaginary friend returns to his life)
Me and My Dragon (David Biedrzycki, YA Picture Book - A boy wants a pet fire-breathing dragon)
Cora and the Nurse Dragon (H. L. Burke, YA Fiction - Young Cora discovers a special dragon, one that makes her pet dragon eggs hatch wonders)
A Boy's Best Book of Magic (David Castlewitz, YA? Fiction - A magic book transports a boy and his mother to the days of his grandfather's youth, to witness the roots of family abuse)
How to Train Your Dragon (Cressida Cowell, YA Fiction - Misfit Viking boy Hiccup struggles to train a stubborn dragon to avoid shaming his chieftain father)
The Very Best of Charles de Lint (Charles de Lint, Fiction - Collected stories of magic old and new by the noted fantasy author)
The Last Dragon (Silvana De Mari, YA Fiction - A young elf, last of his kind, must find the last living dragon to fulfill a prophecy and restore peace and justice to the land)
Hatching Magic (Ann Downer, YA Fiction - A medieval wizard's wyvern familiar travels through a magical portal to modern Boston to lay her egg)
Dragonsdale (Salamanda Drake, YA Fiction - At a special riding school, human children learn to ride dragons - except for the stable owner's daughter, forbidden to fly by her father)
The Rain Wilds Chronicles (Robin Hobb, Fiction - A clutch of malformed dragonlings searches for a long-lost sanctuary)
The Dragonling series (Jackie French Koller, YA Fiction - A boy finds a newborn dragon in its slain mother's pouch)
George Grove and the Dragon (LJ Lawry, YA Ficton - Three South London boys find a dragon's egg)
Dragonsong (Anne McCaffrey, YA? Fiction - A girl stumbles upon a nest of near-legendary fire lizards on the world of Pern)
Dragon Magic (Andre Norton, YA Fiction - A mysterious jigsaw puzzle pulls four boys into magical tales of legend and dragons)
Eragon (Christopher Paolini, Fiction - A farmboy finds a dragon's egg)
The Dragons Are Singing Tonight (Jack Prelutsky, YA Poetry - Dragon poems that sing)
The Egg (M. P. Robertson, YA Picture Book - A boy discovers a dragon's egg in the hen-house)
The Dragon that Ate Summer (Brenda Seabrooke, YA Fiction - A boy finds a little blue dragon in his mother's garden)
The Dragonology books (Dugald A. Steer, editor, YA Fiction - Notes on dragon species from around the world)
The Dragon Box (Katie W. Stewart, YA Fiction - A game pulls a boy into an imperiled magical land)
How to Raise and Keep a Dragon (John Topsell, Joseph Nigg "editor", YA Fiction - The art and science of dragon ownership)
The Crimson-Eyed Dragon (D. M. Trink, YA Fiction - A teen boy discovers secrets tied to a silver dragon statue from an antique store)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Dragon Machine (Helen Ward, YA Picture Book - A young boy starts seeing dragons everywhere)
Dragon Girl (Jeff Weigel, YA Fiction - An orphan girl discovers a cave full of dragon eggs, even as a dragon-slaying knight lurks nearby)
Kasey And His Dragon (E. H. White, YA Fiction - A modern boy finds a dragon's egg, sweeping him off to his destiny in another world)
The Pit Dragon Chronicles (Jane Yolen, YA Fiction - A slave boy on Austar IV, young Jakkin steals an egg from his master to raise his own fighting dragon for the betting pits)
The Dragonback Adventures (Timothy Zahn, YA Fiction - A teen thief of the future finds himself stuck with an honor-bound dragonlike alien)

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The Skull of Truth
(A Magic Shop Book, Book 4)
Bruce Coville
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: Charlie Eggleston can't seem to tell the truth. Whether it's an excuse to his mother for being late home from school or a story told to impress his classmates, he is known for being "creative" with the facts. Charlie isn't a bad kid, but he just doesn't see why he should have to be truthful. Nobody believes him, no matter what he says, and his parents lie about stuff all the time. One afternoon, while running away from bullies who weren't very amused with his latest fibs, Charlie runs across Mr. Elives's Magic Shop, a very special store which never seems to be in the same place more than once. He just wanted to call his parents, but instead is drawn to an old skull - the Skull of Truth. Charlie didn't mean to take it home, but now that he did he's in for more trouble than ever, for the skull has a way of making people around it incapable of lying. Who knew the truth could be so dangerous? (Also titled Charlie Eggleston's Talking Skull.)

REVIEW: It's great to see Mr. Elives back again, and it's also great to see that Coville has returned to his old form. This is a wonderful book, with more depth than most children's books and a lot to say about what truth really is. The subplot about Charlie's friend, who has just returned to school after chemotherapy, adds a dark shadow to his sudden inability to lie, even for friendship's sake. It was nice to note the cameos of incidences and characters from previous Magic Shop books. I wonder if he's planning to write any more.

You might also enjoy:
Crenshaw (Katherine Applegate, YA Fiction - A logic-driven boy's imaginary friend returns to his life)
Wolf Rider (Avi, YA Fiction - A boy believes the anonymous voice who calls to confess a murder, even though the victim is still alive)
A Boy's Best Book of Magic (David Castlewitz, YA? Fiction - A magic book transports a boy and his mother to the days of his grandfather's youth, to witness the roots of family abuse)
The Very Best of Charles de Lint (Charles de Lint, Fiction - Collected stories of magic old and new by the noted fantasy author)
Fly By Night (Frances Hardinge, YA Fiction - In a world where the government controls the presses, truth is hard to come by)
The Boy Who Cried Ninja (Alex Latimer, YA Picture Book - When a boy tells his parents about the weird things going on in the house, he's accused of lying)
Dragon Magic (Andre Norton, YA Fiction - A mysterious jigsaw puzzle pulls four boys into magical tales of legend and dragons)
The Dragon Box (Katie W. Stewart, YA Fiction - A game pulls a boy into an imperiled magical land)
The Crimson-Eyed Dragon (D. M. Trink, YA Fiction - A teen boy discovers secrets tied to a silver dragon statue from an antique store)

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Juliet Dove, Queen of Love
(A Magic Shop Book, Book 5)
Bruce Coville
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
****

DESCRIPTION: Juliet is the shyest girl in Venus Harbor, but her school nickname is "Killer," after the razor-tongued retorts she lashes out with when pushed too hard. One day, fleeing a confrontation with a popular girl (whom she earlier angered with one of her nickname-worthy comments), Juliet finds herself in a strange magic shop. Here, a mysterious lady offers her an ivory locket, and without knowing quite why Juliet accepts the gift. Now all the boys in school are following her like lovesick puppies, the locket won't come off her neck, and two talking rats are relaying messages from the magic shop owner, who is quite concerned but can offer little practical help. Juliet has been drawn into an age-old unfinished love story of truly mythic proportions, and only she can determine if it has a happy ending.

REVIEW: I like Coville's Magic Shop series and am glad to see it continuing, but this story didn't play on the same level as the other books. Usually, a kid with a problem gets a magical item, runs into trouble while using it, and must work out on their own how to improve their lives with the magic they've been given, with minimal further input from Mr. Elives or others. Here, Juliet spends a lot of time in the company of Jerome and Roxanne, the talking rats introduced in Jennifer Murdley's Toad (who also made an appearance in The Skull of Truth), and wandering through other people's sad stories of love. With the amount of story time devoted to the rats, I wonder if Coville is planning to write a spin-off book about them. If he isn't, maybe he should go ahead and do it anyway to get it off his chest and free up future books. It's not that I didn't like them, but Coville never needed talking rats before to tell his Magic Shop stories. They seemed to keep distracting the plot from itself with their silliness, and while Coville does occasionally get silly, it's usually not this pointless. Typically, as the characters deal with their brushes with magic, they delve a bit deeper into the issues raised in the books, in this case the different kinds of love. Juliet's story remains fairly superficial, in large part because so much time was spent with the rats, wandering about everywhere but the place where she has been having the most troubles, her home town. The ending didn't feel quite as satisfying as it should have, as the plot had drifted through so many other stories and touched on so many other issues that I wasn't sure all the threads were tied up adequately. It's a good enough story, but I'm used to Coville doing better than just "good enough."

You might also enjoy:
The Everworld series (K. A. Applegate, YA Fiction - Four Chicago teens are drawn into a world where elder gods, mythic figures, and magic still reign supreme)
Crenshaw (Katherine Applegate, YA Fiction - A logic-driven boy's imaginary friend returns to his life)
A Boy's Best Book of Magic (David Castlewitz, YA? Fiction - A magic book transports a boy and his mother to the days of his grandfather's youth, to witness the roots of family abuse)
The Very Best of Charles de Lint (Charles de Lint, Fiction - Collected stories of magic old and new by the noted fantasy author)
Dragon Magic (Andre Norton, YA Fiction - A mysterious jigsaw puzzle pulls four boys into magical tales of legend and dragons)
The Percy Jackson & the Olympians series (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - A boy learns that the gods and monsters of Greek myth still persist in modern times)
The Dragon Box (Katie W. Stewart, YA Fiction - A game pulls a boy into an imperiled magical land)
The Crimson-Eyed Dragon (D. M. Trink, YA Fiction - A teen boy discovers secrets tied to a silver dragon statue from an antique store)

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The Ghost in the Third Row
(A Nina Tanleven Book, Book 1)
Bruce Coville
Bantam Skylark
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: Sixth-grader Nina Tanleven's summer is going to be very interesting. The play she's auditioning for is in a haunted theater. Legend says that the Woman in White was an actress, killed on stage fifty years ago. During rehearsals, Nina and her new friend Chris look out into the empty seats and see a mysterious lady in the third row - the ghost! Soon, strange things start happening. Costumes are destroyed. Scripts are ripped to shreds. Perhaps the ghost doesn't want the play to go on... or perhaps she's the only one who does.

REVIEW: A great ghost-hunting tale from Bruce Coville, The Ghost in the Third Row is the start of a series in which Nina and Chris do some amateur ghostbusting. More often than not, the real danger comes from the living. Fun, interesting, and well written, not as predictable as some young adult ghost stories... or some adult ghost stories, for that matter.

You might also enjoy:
The Improbable Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (John Joseph Adams, editor, Fiction - Modern authors revisit the classic detective in new, sometimes strange adventures)
Death Warmed Over (Kevin J. Anderson, Fiction - A New Orleans zombie works as a PI among the city's unnatural denizens)
Devil's Race (Avi, YA Fiction - A boy is haunted by an evil ancestor who yearns to live again)
The Supernaturalist (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A near-death experience grants a boy the ability to see invisible entities)
The Wish List (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A teen girl's ghost is deemed too good for Hell but too bad for Heaven)
A Christmas Carol (Charles Dickens, Fiction - A cold-hearted miser has a fateful encounter with Christmas spirits)
Treasure of the Jaguar Warrior - Mystery of the Mayan Calendar (Barbara Ivie Green, Fiction - A divorced woman finds a handsome ghost tied to a lost treasure and a world-ending Mayan curse)
Carnacki, the Ghost-Finder (William Hope Hodgson, Fiction - A collection of tales about a turn-of-the-century paranormal investigator)
OMG (Oh My God) (Bob Kat, YA Fiction - Teens use a forgotten Edison invention and a cell phone app to travel back in time)
Sabriel (Garth Nix, YA Fiction - A girl's necromancer father sends an urgent warning from beyond the gate of Death)
A Cry Out of Time (J. L. Redington, YA Fiction - On vacation in Oregon, a girl tries to help a young ghost)
Ghost Ship (Deitlof Reiche, YA Fiction - The figurehead of a lost ship hides a deadly secret)
The Screaming Staircase (Jonathan Stroud, YA Fiction - In a haunted modern-day England, three talented kids confront horrors living and dead)
Glimpse (Steven B. Whibley, YA Fiction - A boy finds himself burdened with the ability to predict death)
The Ghost Witch (Betty Ren Wright, YA Fiction - A girl finds that her new home is haunted by a witch)

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The Ghost Wore Gray
(A Nina Tanleven Book, Book 2)
Bruce Coville
Bantam Skylark
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: Nina's father has been hired to restore the historic Quackadoodle Inn, a place with a history dating back to the Civil War and a resident ghost from the same era. "Sensitized" to the supernatural by their experience with the Woman in White, she and Chris soon find themselves face to face with the young Confederate soldier who haunts the inn. Who is the ghost in gray? What is his story? And what happened to the treasure he is rumored to have buried before his death? The girls must find out before things turn deadly in this day and age.

REVIEW: Another great story from Bruce Coville, not just a retread of the first book. Nice plot twists, interesting characters, and a truly magical ending.

You might also enjoy:
The Improbable Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (John Joseph Adams, editor, Fiction - Modern authors revisit the classic detective in new, sometimes strange adventures)
Death Warmed Over (Kevin J. Anderson, Fiction - A New Orleans zombie works as a PI among the city's unnatural denizens)
Devil's Race (Avi, YA Fiction - A boy is haunted by an evil ancestor who yearns to live again)
The Supernaturalist (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A near-death experience grants a boy the ability to see invisible entities)
The Wish List (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A teen girl's ghost is deemed too good for Hell but too bad for Heaven)
A Christmas Carol (Charles Dickens, Fiction - A cold-hearted miser has a fateful encounter with Christmas spirits)
Treasure of the Jaguar Warrior - Mystery of the Mayan Calendar (Barbara Ivie Green, Fiction - A divorced woman finds a handsome ghost tied to a lost treasure and a world-ending Mayan curse)
Carnacki, the Ghost-Finder (William Hope Hodgson, Fiction - A collection of tales about a turn-of-the-century paranormal investigator)
OMG (Oh My God) (Bob Kat, YA Fiction - Teens use a forgotten Edison invention and a cell phone app to travel back in time)
Sabriel (Garth Nix, YA Fiction - A girl's necromancer father sends an urgent warning from beyond the gate of Death)
A Cry Out of Time (J. L. Redington, YA Fiction - On vacation in Oregon, a girl tries to help a young ghost)
Ghost Ship (Deitlof Reiche, YA Fiction - The figurehead of a lost ship hides a deadly secret)
The Screaming Staircase (Jonathan Stroud, YA Fiction - In a haunted modern-day England, three talented kids confront horrors living and dead)
Glimpse (Steven B. Whibley, YA Fiction - A boy finds himself burdened with the ability to predict death)
The Ghost Witch (Betty Ren Wright, YA Fiction - A girl finds that her new home is haunted by a witch)

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The Ghost in the Big Brass Bed
(A Nina Tanleven Book, Book 3)
Bruce Coville
Bantam Skylark
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: Nina gets a job in an antique store to earn some extra cash. The owner, Norma Bliss, is a friend of her father's, and has an assortment of colorful clients. One of her oldest and most faithful customers is Phoebe Watson, the aging daughter of the late painter Cornelius Fletcher. Despite his fame and the high prices his haunting yet strangely gripping pieces sell for, Phoebe is at the end of her financial means, forced to sell off antiques from her historical home to make ends meet. When Nina and her friend Chris go with Norma to pick up the latest item up for sale, the two kids immediately sense that there is a ghost on the grounds. It turns out there are two ghosts in the Fletcher house, both tied to a story of love, loss, madness, and the last, lost painting of Cornelius Fletcher.

REVIEW: Arguably the best and most unique of the three Nina Tanleven books, The Ghost in the Big Brass Bed reads like a finale to the series. More ghosts, more sleuthing, and more danger than the other two put together, with an ending that almost makes you cry.

You might also enjoy:
The Improbable Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (John Joseph Adams, editor, Fiction - Modern authors revisit the classic detective in new, sometimes strange adventures)
Death Warmed Over (Kevin J. Anderson, Fiction - A New Orleans zombie works as a PI among the city's unnatural denizens)
Devil's Race (Avi, YA Fiction - A boy is haunted by an evil ancestor who yearns to live again)
The Supernaturalist (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A near-death experience grants a boy the ability to see invisible entities)
The Wish List (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A teen girl's ghost is deemed too good for Hell but too bad for Heaven)
A Christmas Carol (Charles Dickens, Fiction - A cold-hearted miser has a fateful encounter with Christmas spirits)
Carnacki, the Ghost-Finder (William Hope Hodgson, Fiction - A collection of tales about a turn-of-the-century paranormal investigator)
OMG (Oh My God) (Bob Kat, YA Fiction - Teens use a forgotten Edison invention and a cell phone app to travel back in time)
Sabriel (Garth Nix, YA Fiction - A girl's necromancer father sends an urgent warning from beyond the gate of Death)
A Cry Out of Time (J. L. Redington, YA Fiction - On vacation in Oregon, a girl tries to help a young ghost)
Ghost Ship (Deitlof Reiche, YA Fiction - The figurehead of a lost ship hides a deadly secret)
The Screaming Staircase (Jonathan Stroud, YA Fiction - In a haunted modern-day England, three talented kids confront horrors living and dead)
Glimpse (Steven B. Whibley, YA Fiction - A boy finds himself burdened with the ability to predict death)
The Ghost Witch (Betty Ren Wright, YA Fiction - A girl finds that her new home is haunted by a witch)

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Odds are Good
(An Oddly Enough/Odder than Ever Omnibus)
Bruce Coville
Magic Carpet Books
Fiction, YA Collection/Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: A boy who sprouts butterfly wings... a princess with an unusual odor... a man living in a giant's mouth... a magical ship with a golden sail... these tales and many more appear in Odds are Good, an omnibus of two short story collections by noted young adult author Bruce Coville.

REVIEW: This omnibus combines two older anthologies of Coville's short stories. From lighthearted to dark-souled, Coville always entrances, captivates, and entertains. Even though I'd seen four of these in other books, I still considered this one well worth the money. I also must say that The Giant's Tooth is one of the most bizarre concepts for a short story I've ever read.

You might also enjoy:
Strange Happenings (Avi, YA Fiction - Five stories of transformations)
The Very Best of Charles de Lint (Charles de Lint, Fiction - Collected stories of magic old and new by the noted fantasy author)
Fifty-One Tales (Lord Dunsany, Fiction - A collection of short tales by the celebrated Irish author)
The Anything Box (Zenna Henderson, Fiction - Magical tales)
By Sword, Stave or Stylus (Andrew Knighton, Fiction - A collection of fantasy short stories)
Dragonfold (Tyrean Martinson, YA Fiction - A collection of stories, poems, and excerpts)
The Flower of Scotland collections (William Meikle, Fiction - Short stories ranging from silly to disturbing)
The Good, the Bad, and the Utterly Screwed (Steff Metal, Fiction - Five absurd little tales)
Eyes Like Sky And Coal And Moonlight (Cat Rambo, Fiction - Short fantasy stories)
The Tales of Beedle the Bard (J. K. Rowling, YA Fiction - Five Wizarding fairy tales from Rowling's Harry Potter universe)
Magical Roads (Kia Zi Shiru, YA Fiction - Four magic-touched tales)
Short Tales (Volume One) (Steve R. Yeager, Fiction - A collection of short stories)

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Oddest of All
Bruce Coville
Harcourt
Fiction, YA Collection/Fantasy
***

DESCRIPTION: A girl confronts her fear of a pond, a boy investigates a swamp's peculiar frog population, a juvenile delinquent passes through Hell's gate, a child who tastes unicorn meat is forever changed... Bruce Coville, prolific author and editor, compiles nine of his original short stories in this anthology.

REVIEW: Usually, I find Coville a fairly safe bet when it comes to anthologies. His previous collections (compiled in Odds are Good, reviewed above) had a nice range of tales, from silly to scary to downright bizarre. Comparatively, this collection feels flat. The stories all read fairly fast, but only a handful linger in the memory for any length of time. More than one feels like an unfinished start to a book that never happened. Though not a terrible anthology by any means, I suppose I just expected a little more from Coville.

You might also enjoy:
Strange Happenings (Avi, YA Fiction - Five stories of transformations)
The Very Best of Charles de Lint (Charles de Lint, Fiction - Collected stories of magic old and new by the noted fantasy author)
Fifty-One Tales (Lord Dunsany, Fiction - A collection of short tales by the celebrated Irish author)
The Anything Box (Zenna Henderson, Fiction - Magical tales)
By Sword, Stave or Stylus (Andrew Knighton, Fiction - A collection of fantasy short stories)
Dragonfold (Tyrean Martinson, YA Fiction - A collection of stories, poems, and excerpts)
The Flower of Scotland collections (William Meikle, Fiction - Short stories ranging from silly to disturbing)
The Good, the Bad, and the Utterly Screwed (Steff Metal, Fiction - Five absurd little tales)
Eyes Like Sky And Coal And Moonlight (Cat Rambo, Fiction - Short fantasy stories)
The Tales of Beedle the Bard (J. K. Rowling, YA Fiction - Five Wizarding fairy tales from Rowling's Harry Potter universe)
Magical Roads (Kia Zi Shiru, YA Fiction - Four magic-touched tales)
Short Tales (Volume One) (Steve R. Yeager, Fiction - A collection of short stories)

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Space Station ICE-3
Bruce Coville
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
***

DESCRIPTION: A boy on an orbital space station stirs up big trouble when he reports seeing a body in the waste reprocessing tanks. Even more trouble starts when he finds that same face on a man who is still alive and well! His investigation takes him into the secret experiments of the top-ranked scientists on ICE-3, and puts him and his friends in mortal danger.

REVIEW: Mr. Coville, if you're reading this, might I suggest a vacation? It looks like you need one. This isn't the caliber of story I've come to expect from you. The plot was so-so, the conclusion uninspiring, the characters nothing special. It was readable, but not really satisfying. You can do better, and I think you know it.

You might also enjoy:
Eve & Adam (Katherine Applegate and Michael Grant, YA Fiction - A teen girl discovers dark secrets at her mother's medical research lab)
Ender's Game (Orson Scott Card, YA Fiction - A child prodigy trains aboard a space station for intestellar war)
LUC (Kimball Lee, Fiction - A scientist's cloning project unexpectedly produces a sapient man)
The 2099 series (John Peel, YA Fiction - A boy in the future discovers a threat to global civilization)
Starswarm (Jerry Pournelle, YA Fiction - A boy on another planet solves an alien mystery)
Larklight (Philip Reeve, YA Fiction - In a Victorian-era space adventure, two British children embark upon a singular adventure through the aether of space)

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Bruce Coville's Strange Worlds
Bruce Coville, Editor
Avon Camelot
Fiction, YA Anthology/Sci-Fi
*****

DESCRIPTION: This anthology gathers tales old and new about other worlds: new planets, new dimensions, or even that strange place called the future.

REVIEW: Once again, Coville assembles a memorable collection of thought-provoking stories. Like his other books and anthologies, I can only recommend that you not make the same mistake I did and read them all on a work night; these tales have a way of sticking in your head long after you read them, making sleep difficult (if not impossible.)

You might also enjoy:
Strange Happenings (Avi, YA Fiction - Five stories of lives transformed)
A Treasury of Witches and Wizards (David Bennet, editor, YA Fiction - Stories of witches and wizards)
We Three Dragons (Bill Fawcett, editor - A holiday-themed trio of dragon tales)
Cats in Space (Brian Fawcett, editor, Fiction - Sci-fi cat tales)
Dragons: The Greatest Stories (Martin H. Greenberg, editor, Fiction - Short stories about dragons from popular authors)
The Anything Box (Zenna Henderson, Fiction - A collection of peculiar short stories)
Fantasy Stories (Diana Wynne Jones, editor, YA Fiction - Fantasy stories and story exerpts)
Flights of Fantasy (Mercedes Lackey, editor, Fiction - Stories of raptors and ravens)
Catfantastic I-IV (Andre Norton and Martin H. Greenberg, editors, Fiction - Fantasy and sci-fi tales of cats)
Starswarm (Jerry Pournelle, YA Fiction - A boy on another planet solves an alien mystery)
Rogue Wave (Theodore Taylor, YA Fiction - Stories of the sea and military action)
Book of Enchantments (Patricia Wrede, YA Fiction - Short story collection)
Here, There be Dragons (Jane Yolen, YA Fiction - Stories of dragons)

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