KELCIE MURPHY AND THE HUNT FOR THE HEART OF DANU, Book 2 of 2: The Academy for the Unbreakable Arts, by Erika Lewis and Bess Cozby, Starscape, July 25, 2023, Hardcover, $19.99 (ages 8-12)
A student at a magical school must help protect her new home in Kelcie Murphy and the Hunt for the Heart of Danu, by Erika Lewis.
It’s hard having a father who’s an infamous traitor. It’s even harder having a mother who’s an omen of doom.
After a summer away, Kelcie Murphy is excited to be back at the Academy for the Unbreakable Arts. But she and her friends have barely settled in when they receive a visit from her mother ― the war goddess, Nemain ― with a warning of coming calamity.
The Heart of Danu, the legendary source of all light and warmth in the Lands of Summer, is going to be stolen. And only Kelcie and her mates can stop it. As they travel with the rest of the students to Summer City to take part in the glorious Ascension Ceremony, Kelcie has no time for the military parade, the lavish ball, or even to visit her father: she’s determined to protect the Heart and her new home.
But the Lands of Summer are still not a welcoming place for Kelcie. When disaster strikes, the Queen, the High Guard, and even some of her schoolmates suspect Kelcie is to blame.
As the world is plunged into darkness, Kelcie will have to decide: does she keep fighting for a place that may always see her as a traitor’s daughter, or for a future greater than the war to come. —Synopsis provided by Starscape
Kelcie Murphy and the Hunt for the Heart of Danu is the second book in Erika Lewis’ Academy for the Unbreakable Arts series. And it’s imperative that you read the first book prior to its successor. In fact, it’s a good idea to read them one right after another, as there’s a lot of details and nuances that can be forgotten.
As with Kelcie Murphy and the Academy for the Unbreakable Arts, there’s a lot of action in Kelcie Murphy and the Hunt for the Heart of Danu. This keeps the story moving forward at a strong pace. Lewis continues to build on a unique storyline that utilizes Celtic mythology.
Lewis has created a complex world that is fascinating. It’s also fairly complicated. The suggested age range is 8-12, but it’s a better fit for more mature 9- or 10-year-olds. I could even see readers into their teens gravitating toward this one.
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