Burning Kingdoms

320p. (The Internment Chronicles: Bk. 2). ebook available. S. & S. Mar. 2015. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781442480643. LC 2013041618.
Gr 7 Up—Continuing where Perfect Ruin (S. & S., 2013) left off, the characters feel and fight the constraints of the new kingdom in which they find themselves. Morgan, Pen, Princess Celeste, and the rest have ridden the Metal Bird from their troubled kingdom of Internment in the sky and have landed on the outskirts of the city of Havalais. They have landed in the middle of "winter," a completely unfamiliar time full of cold and frozen water falling from the sky. During this dire season, the young people of Internment are hosted by Jack Piper, advisor to the king, and his five children. The cold isn't the only thing that hinders their comings and goings as King Ingram has recently begun a war with a neighboring kingdom—a war that may have implications for Internment and her people, whether above or below. Despite the threat of rocket attacks, Morgan and Pen join "Birdie" Piper in secret night journeys into the city to enjoy silent picture shows and clubs that hearken back to the 1920s. DeStefano's characters have little power to affect their fates with their actions, so talk and diplomacy are their only outlets. By removing opportunities for action, the author allows her characters to reveal more of themselves to one another and to readers. The author's fans will want to read this nuanced second volume in "The Internment Chronicles," but it should also appeal to teens who appreciate emotionally charged and character-driven novels.—Eric Norton, McMillan Memorial Library, Wisconsin Rapids, WI
After being forced to flee their floating city of Internment, Morgan (Perfect Ruin) and her friends have finally reached the land on the ground, only to discover that the foreign kingdom is at war. The Jazz Age–feeling world is vividly realized, but most compelling are the complex relationships between the main character, her brother, and her companions.

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