Ophelia and the Marvelous Boy

Karen Foxlee, illus. by Yoko Tanaka. Knopf, $16.99 (240p) ISBN 978-0-385-75354-8
In this appropriately frosty take on The Snow Queen, Foxlee (The Midnight Dress) introduces 11-year-old Ophelia Jane Worthington-Whittard, who’s asthmatic, pragmatic, curious, and braver than she realizes. Ophelia’s family, shattered after her mother’s death, is visiting an unnamed snowy city so her father can curate an exhibition of swords. Exploring the strange, icy, and nearly empty museum, Ophelia discovers the long-imprisoned Marvelous Boy, who recruits her to help him save the world from the Snow Queen; she also turns up a cluster of deadly “misery birds” and a roomful of the ghosts of numerous girls. Foxlee’s writing is elegant and accessible, with a pervading melancholy; this is as much a story of loss as it is an adventure. Certain elements, such as the identity of the Snow Queen, aren’t really surprises, but it’s in Foxlee’s evocation of the museum’s unsettling dangers, as well as Ophelia’s eventual willingness to reconcile what she knows in her mind with what she feels in her heart, that this story shines. Ages 8–12. Author’s agent: Catherine Drayton, Inkwell Management. Illustrator’s agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 11/11/2013
Release date: 01/28/2014
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FORMATS
Library Binding - 228 pages - 978-0-385-75355-5
Compact Disc - 978-0-8041-6836-6
Compact Disc - 978-0-8041-6834-2
Paperback - 224 pages - 978-0-385-75356-2
Hardcover - 224 pages - 978-1-4714-0241-8
Hardcover - 228 pages - 978-1-4714-0238-8
Hardcover - 5 pages - 978-1-4712-6153-4
Open Ebook - 224 pages - 978-0-385-75357-9
Open Ebook - 1 pages - 978-1-306-30003-2
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