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The Silver Bowlby Diane Stanley
Synopses & Reviews
Unwanted at home, Molly goes to work for the king of Westria as a humble scullery maid. She arrives at the castle with no education, no manners, and a very disturbing secret: She sees visions, and those visions always come true.
One day, while she's working in the king's great hall, young Prince Alaric passes by. Molly finds him unbearably handsome—but also unbearably rude. But what does it really matter? She'll probably never see him again.
In time Molly is promoted to polishing silver and is given a priceless royal treasure to work on: the king's great ceremonial hand basin. But there's something odd about it. The silver warms to her touch, a voice commands her to watch and listen, and then the visions appear. They tell the story of a dreaded curse that has stalked the royal family for years. There have already been deaths; soon there will be more.
As tragedy after tragedy strikes the royal family, Molly can't help but wonder: Will the beautiful Alaric be next? Together with her friends Tobias and Winifred, Molly must protect the prince and destroy the curse. Could a less likely champion be found to save the kingdom of Westria?
"A versatile and inventive raconteur, Stanley (Bella at Midnight) nimbly weaves intrigue and fantasy into this richly layered story set in medieval times. Sent to work as a scullery maid at the castle, high-spirited Molly bids farewell to her mother, who tells Molly that she has inherited her ability to see visions predicting the future. She also gives her daughter a necklace that Molly's silversmith grandfather had 'put some good magic into,' which she predicts Molly might need. Polishing an intricately patterned silver hand basin belonging to the king, Molly hears a voice urging her to 'Listen!' and she sees in the bowl scenes from the past, including one depicting the bowl's creation by her grandfather, who was forced to bestow on it curses that have plagued the royal family. With crisp pacing and enticing end-of-chapter teasers, Stanley gradually reveals the intriguing story of the curse, which Molly must break in order to save a kind prince who's the sole surviving direct heir to the throne. That task and the Molly's rescue of the prince are relayed with suspense and some unanticipated plot spirals. Ages 10 — up. (Apr.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Diane Stanley is the author andillustrator of beloved books for youngreaders, including The Silver Bowl, whichreceived three starred reviews; Saving Sky,winner of the Arab American Museum'sArab American Award and a Bank StreetCollege of Education Best Book of the Year;Bella at Midnight, a School Library JournalBest Book of the Year and an ALA BooklistEditors' Choice; The Mysterious Case of the Allbright Academy; The Mysterious Matter of I. M. Fine; and A Time Apart. Well knownas the author and illustrator of award-winningpicture-book biographies, she isthe recipient of the Orbis Pictus Awardfor Outstanding Nonfiction for Childrenand the Washington Post-Children's BookGuild Nonfiction Award for the body ofher work.
Ms. Stanley has also written andillustrated numerous picture books, includingthree creatively reimagined fairy tales: The Giant and the Beanstalk, Goldie and the Three Bears, and Rumpelstiltskin's Daughter.She lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
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