cover image Igraine the Brave

Igraine the Brave

Cornelia Funke, , read by Xanthe Elbrick. . Listening Library, $28 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-7393-5618-0

Falling into the Funke-lite category of fantasy (more Dragonrider than Inkheart ), young listeners, especially girls, will be eager to find adventure with the irrepressible heroine of this sprightly adventure. Igraine longs to leave boring life at Pimpernel Castle and be a famous knight—unheard of, of course, for a girl. But when the magic of her sorcerer parents goes awry and they turn themselves into pigs at the very moment that nefarious necromancers gather to attack, Igraine is called to undertake a courageous and crucial quest. British actress Elbrick makes 12-year-old Igraine’s frustration and exasperation palpable without sounding overwrought. And by giving the protagonist a youthful, yet confident and strong, vocal delivery, she helps listeners truly believe in Funke’s characterization of Igraine. Additional solid portrayals—a sorrowful knight with an Americanized accent, a mostly friendly giant and singing books of magic, go far to create a lighthearted and colorful setting. Ages 8-up. Simultaneous release with the Scholastic/Chicken House hardcover (Reviews, Sept. 10). (Sept.)