Jake Halpern and Peter Kujawinski. Putnam, $17.99 (272p) ISBN 978-0-399-17581-7
In this intriguing fantasy, two friends discover the secret of life after death as they travel to the realm where people go to await their final fate. Wren is an orphan and thief living on Edgeland, an island that services the Drain, a hole in the ocean into which the deceased are sent. When Wren is framed for murder, she attempts to flee, and she and her best friend Alec are swept through the Drain, ending up in Purgatory. They discover a bizarre community made up of the living and the dead, led by religious leaders who exercise tyrannical control over their subjects. In order to return to the world in which they belong, Alec and Wren must unravel long-hidden secrets and free the trapped spirits. Halpern and Kujawinski provide a fascinating world, and their story is fueled by a strong premise and compelling protagonists, but it doesn’t reach its full potential. As in Nightfall, too many aspects of the setting are left unexplained while the plot rushes ahead at full speed. Ages 10–up. Agent: Tina Bennett, William Morris Endeavor. (May)
Reviewed on: 03/20/2017
Release date: 05/09/2017
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Audio book sample courtesy of Penguin Random House Audio

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