cover image Rebel Heart

Rebel Heart

Moira Young. S&S/McElderry, $17.99 (432p) ISBN 978-1-4424-3000-6

In Young's second Dust Lands book, she returns to the gritty world of Blood Red Road and to the gruff, colloquial voice of Saba, a fierce girl living in a bleak, post-apocalyptic future that incorporates elements of the fantasy and western genres. Saba is haunted by the deaths on her shoulders (particularly that of her friend Epona), and she believes she might be going insane. Her rescued twin brother, Lugh, also bears emotional scars from his time in captivity, and the siblings often battle each other as they quest to reach an oasis called the Big Water. Meanwhile, Saba's new love, Jack, discovers that the evil slavers known as the Tonton are rising again, led by someone called the Pathfinder. Young is even more ambitious this time out, interweaving multiple plot threads and narrative voices, and while her stylistic choices do not always result in easy reading (the same stream-of-consciousness style that makes Saba's voice so effective can be awkward when describing Jack's actions in the third person), her immersive storytelling will lure readers deeper into this dangerous, starkly lovely terrain. Ages 14%E2%80%93up. Agent: Gillie Russell, Aitken Alexander. (Oct.)