Last Canto of the Dead

Rick ­Riordan Presents. (Outlaw Saints: Bk. 2). May 2023. 400p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781368070904.
Gr 7 Up–In this novel that picks up where Ballad & Dagger left off, Mateo and Chela must figure out how their past as spirits connects to their godlike powers and the reemergence of San Madrigal Island from the sea. Being contained in human form makes it difficult to control their magic, and their struggles mirror a traditional coming-of-age story as they try to heal the divisions in their community from Ballad & Dagger. Mateo and Chela’s romance is a strong subplot that manages to add layers to the worldbuilding and provide authentic teen voice to the narration. Anti-colonialism remains a primary theme in this book, which features the same diversity seen in its predecessor.
VERDICT A satisfying and suspenseful end to the duology. Recommended for purchase.

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