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Strange Chemistry #01: Blackwood

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Strange Chemistry #01: Blackwood Cover

ISBN13: 9781908844071
ISBN10: 1908844078
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

On Roanoke Island, the legend of the 114 people who mysteriously vanished from the Lost Colony hundreds of years ago is just an outdoor drama for the tourists, a story people tell. But when the island faces the sudden disappearance of 114 people now, an unlikely pair of 17-year-olds may be the only hope of bringing them back.

Miranda, a misfit girl from the island's most infamous family, and Phillips, an exiled teen criminal who hears the voices of the dead, must dodge everyone from federal agents to long-dead alchemists as they work to uncover the secrets of the new Lost Colony. The one thing they can't dodge is each other.

Blackwood is a dark, witty coming of age story that combines America's oldest mystery with a thoroughly contemporary romance.

Review:

"Bond, a first-time novelist and PW contributor, presents a modern-day story set on Roanoke Island that offers an explanation for the mysterious real-life disappearance of 114 colonists from the island during the 16th century. When the exact same number of Roanoke residents go missing one night, Miranda, a town outcast whose alcoholic father is murdered the same night, and Phillips, son of the Roanoke police chief, try to figure out what happened. The story shifts focus between the two 17-year-olds, both of whom feel connected to the island's mysteries: Phillips has heard the voices of spirits in his head for years, and Miranda's family is believed to be cursed. Despite past bad blood between the teenagers, they work together, trying to save the island and everyone they love. Bond uses a wealth of pop-culture references to establish her protagonists as hip outsiders, though they may not age well (and Miranda's constant use of the Battlestar Galactica expletive 'frak' is intrusive). Still, Bond has created an engaging mythology and mystery involving alchemy, curses, and past lives. Ages 13 — up. Agent: Jennifer Laughran, Andrea Brown Literary Agency. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Gwenda Bond is a contributing writer for Publishers Weekly and regularly reviews for Locus. Her nonfiction work has also appeared in the Washington Post, Lightspeed, and Strange Horizons, among others, and she guest-edited a special YA issue for Subterranean Online. She holds an MFA in Writing from the Vermont College of Fine Arts' program in writing for children and young adults. Readers of Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet may know her as everyone's Dear Aunt Gwenda.

She lives in a hundred-year-old house in Lexington, Kentucky, with her husband, author Christopher Rowe, and their menagerie: Hemingway the Cat, Polydactyl, LLC; Miss Emma the Dog-Girl, CPA; and Puck the Puppy, INC. This is her first novel.

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Candace @ LoveyDoveyBooks, May 25, 2012 (view all comments by Candace @ LoveyDoveyBooks)
Originally posted on Lovey Dovey Books

Blackwood is a hauntingly mysterious read that gave me chills from the moment I began reading. Gwenda Bond's debut novel captured my interest as soon as I recognized the blast into history that fuels Blackwood's plot. I have to mention how much I adore the cover because it's always a plus when a book's cover allows me to know the story before I've even started reading the story.

The characters of Blackwood are so likable that I couldn't help try to solve the mystery with them as they uncovered the tragedy befalling their small town. Miranda Blackwood, Battle Star Galactica and frequent 'frak' fan, was so alone in her pain and need to leave the town she's doomed to reside. Phillips Rawling was no better off, taking on the bad boy role to escape the whispers he inherited. Together, Phillips and Miranda were unstoppable. I loved seeing how they reacted and responded to each other. It was almost as if they forged a bond that kept them sane through all the madness they experienced. Both characters were more than what they appeared to be and diving deeper into the story proves so.

Blackwood's tone is dark and eerie despite the occasional bouts of laughter Phillips and Miranda conspired from me. I didn't expect much of what happens in the story and it took some time for me to twist and wrap my brain around some of the events. The Lost Colony legend is not one I've heard much about before and I love how Bond infuses it into a contemporary setting. Blackwood has pretty much shaken what my idea of a supernatural mystery is and I'm anticipating the next novel from Gwenda Bond.

*eGalley provided by NetGalley on behalf of Angry Robot/Strange Chemistry*
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Product Details

ISBN:
9781908844071
Author:
Bond, Gwenda
Publisher:
Strange Chemistry
Subject:
Science Fiction, Fantasy, & Magic
Subject:
Children s-Science Fiction and Fantasy
Subject:
fantasy;young adult;ya;fiction;teen;mystery;paranormal
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Strange Chemistry
Publication Date:
20120931
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
from 9
Language:
English
Pages:
416
Dimensions:
7.74 x 5.13 x 0.94 in 0.82 lb
Age Level:
from 14

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Related Subjects

Children's » Action and Adventure » Pirates
Children's » Historical Fiction
Children's » Historical Fiction » United States » Colonial and Revolutionary Periods
Children's » Science Fiction and Fantasy » General
Young Adult » General

Strange Chemistry #01: Blackwood New Trade Paper
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Product details 416 pages Strange Chemistry - English 9781908844071 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Bond, a first-time novelist and PW contributor, presents a modern-day story set on Roanoke Island that offers an explanation for the mysterious real-life disappearance of 114 colonists from the island during the 16th century. When the exact same number of Roanoke residents go missing one night, Miranda, a town outcast whose alcoholic father is murdered the same night, and Phillips, son of the Roanoke police chief, try to figure out what happened. The story shifts focus between the two 17-year-olds, both of whom feel connected to the island's mysteries: Phillips has heard the voices of spirits in his head for years, and Miranda's family is believed to be cursed. Despite past bad blood between the teenagers, they work together, trying to save the island and everyone they love. Bond uses a wealth of pop-culture references to establish her protagonists as hip outsiders, though they may not age well (and Miranda's constant use of the Battlestar Galactica expletive 'frak' is intrusive). Still, Bond has created an engaging mythology and mystery involving alchemy, curses, and past lives. Ages 13 — up. Agent: Jennifer Laughran, Andrea Brown Literary Agency. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
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