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City of the Beasts
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PW called this story of a 15-year-old who is reluctant to accompany his grandmother on a writing assignment in South America "laced with surprises and ironic twists." Once their expedition in search of a legendary nine-foot-tall "Beast" begins, however, his doubts are pushed out of his mind by more immediate concerns. All ages. (June) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Gr 6-10-Combine a magical world, mystical shamanic adventure, and feisty and eccentric characters with a fast-paced eco-thriller and you have Allende's first book for young adults. Set in the lush and treacherous Amazonian rain forest, this is the story of 15-year-old Alexander Cold and 12-year-old Nadia Santos. While his mother is in Texas for chemotherapy treatment, Alex is spending the summer with his emotionally distant grandmother, who has been hired to find and write an article on the "Beast" that has been terrorizing the jungle. Partially funded by a suspicious businessman, the party includes a self-centered professor, several photographers, a government doctor and soldiers, a few native Indians, and a guide, Csar Santos, who brings along his daughter. Alex and Nadia become good friends, and together discover their own inner strengths through visions and shamanic journeys with the local tribe. The plot is as thick as its jungle setting. There are dangers such as the terrifying humanoid Beast that kills with huge claws, anacondas, natives with poison dart arrows, and an untrustworthy member of the expedition. The story is a struggle between good and evil, filled with surprises and adventure. Put this title on your "If You Liked Harry Potter" lists, and Allende may just find new fans. Though this is a rather hefty book, it is a real page-turner with hope for more, as Allende leaves readers with, "Until we meet again-."-Angela J. Reynolds, Washington County Cooperative Library Services, Hillsboro, OR Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

"Filled with magic and mysticism" -- KLIATT
Filled with magic and mysticism --KLIATT
"Filled with magic and mysticism"--KLIATT
Filled with magic and mysticism --KLIATT"

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