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The Undrowned Child
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A stunning debut in which Venice is dying - and a long-ago prophecy of an enchanted child has been awakened from the canal's poisoned waters.

About the Author

Michelle Lovric divides her time between a flat on the Thames, and Venice. She has published three novels for adults, of which 'The Remedy' was longlisted for the Orange Prize for Fiction. She combines her fiction work with editing, designing and producing literary anthologies including her own translations of Latin and Italian poetry. Her book 'Love Letters' was a New York Times best-seller. She maintains large databases of text and visual material on memoirs, love poems and letters, female and male wit, slang/cursing/archaic words and esoteric medical matters.

Reviews

I would recommend this book to anyone that would like to have fun while finding out true stories about this world famous city... This brilliant adventure is full of fantasy and drama and there is always something going on - SCOTTISHBOOKTRUST.COM - Rachel (young reviewer)

In the year 1899, the evil spirit of Venice's ancient enemy, Bajamonte Tiepolo, whose bones are buried deep in the Grand Canal, rises to seek revenge on the city that destroyed him centuries earlier. The mayor offers rational explanations for swelling tides of hot water, encroaching sharks, ghostly bells, and eerie lights, while insisting that children who die from plague be buried secretly at night. A magical book takes 11-year old Teodora "between-the-Linings," making her visible only to children, ghosts, and animals. The book also introduces Teo to Renzo, a scholarly boy her age, and Lussa, mermaid queen and keeper of the "Seldom Seen Press," whose bawdy handbills warn Venetians of danger ("Have ye all been beaten with the stupid stick, like your mayor...?"). Racing against time, tide, and "baddened magic," Teo and Renzo recruit forces to battle the enemy. Energetic pacing, delightful fantasy, historical drama, lively humor, and a palpable love for Venice pervade the first YA novel from Lovric (who has written several adult novels set in that city). Addressing themes of honor, friendship, redemption, and belonging, it's an engrossing page-turner. Ages 10-up. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Gr 5-8-Fantasy and historical fiction blend meticulously in this richly imaginative novel. Set in 1899, it's an intricately woven tale about rescuing Venice from impending demise. Teodora Gasperin, 11, miraculously survived a drowning accident that left her an orphan. She was adopted by two scientists who are attending a conference in Venice to find a way to save the city from sinking into the sea. While there, Teo is accidentally hit on the head by an extraordinary book, The Key to the Secret City for the Children of Venice, when it topples from a bookstore shelf, thus beginning her adventures. The book speaks to her, leading her on a quest to rescue the city from evil Bajamonte Tiepolo. After the accident, Teo is visible only to children, and she has extraordinary powers. As she tries to unlock the mystery to save the city, she deals with clever mermaids, some of whom add humor to the adventure. After a bumpy start, Renzo, a chauvinistic young Venetian, becomes her good friend and joins in her search. Lovric has included intriguing twists and turns on almost every page, with vampire eels and villains galore. Teo is a wonderful but unassuming heroine, and Venice itself is a thrilling character. The combination of imagination, thorough research, and evocative prose renders this an exceptional read that will not relinquish readers from its grasp. Happily, a sequel is already planned. This is Lovric's first contribution to literature for the young, and it is a gem.-Renee Steinberg, formerly at Fieldstone Middle School, Montvale, NJ (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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