After the court jester Gilwad publicly curses the queen and her unborn progeny, the kingdom of Kaloon bans magic. The powerful Keepers of the Light may exile any who display signs of the stuff—black cats, the left-handed, twins—to a dangerous, mythical place known as the Twists. Royal princesses Flissa and Sara, twins, have hidden their dual existence from all save their parents and a few trusted servants for nearly 12 years. Theirs is a complicated dance in which royal duties are split evenly between two girls living one life as Princess Flissara. When their mother is cursed and nearing death, the girls together find their way into the Twists with the help of Gilwad’s son, Galric, to the one mage who can save their mother’s life. This heartwarming tale explores personal growth and difference among even those purported to be similar. Allen (the Gabby Duran series) brings the magic of Kaloon and its royal family to life in this series opener with an enduring feel. Ages 8–12. Agent: Jane Startz, Jane Startz Productions (Apr.)
From the Publisher
"A thrilling tale full of magic and adventure, perfect for fans of Ella Enchanted!"New York Times best-selling author Jessica Day George
"A bubbly series start with strong characterizations, high appeal, and some thoughtful commentary."Booklist
"Heartwarming tale... [a] series opener with an enduring feel."Publishers Weekly
"The plot moves along quickly with twists, turns, and surprises that will keep readers engaged and eager for the next chapter... Colorful detail and complicated characters will leave readers eager for the next installment."School Library Journal
"Full of surprises... Wonderfully told."The Denver Post
"There's magic on every page, and not just of the spellcasting variety. Twinchantment is a fun, exhilarating, and heartwarming story about finding strength in family... and in being yourself."Zack Loran Clark & Nick Eliopulos, authors of The Adventurers Guild series
"Twinchantment is nothing short of TWINCHANTING! A magical, action-paced, girl power adventure through a fantastically imagined fantasy kingdom. The surprising twists in the tale will keep readers guessing till the very end and leave them hungry for book two."Mari Mancusi, author of The Camelot Code: The Once and Future Geek
Publishers Weekly: New Kids' and YA Books: Week of April 8, 2019, selection
YAYOMG!: YAYBOOKS! Here's What You Should Read in April 2019, selection-
School Library Journal
Gr 3–7—Following the savage murder of King Lamar's family, the Magic Eradication Act kept the kingdom of Kaloon safe from danger. That is, until the day King Edwin and Queen Latonya announced the imminent birth of their first child, and the court jester, Gilward, cast a spell on the Queen and vanished into thin air. That spell results in the birth of identical twin daughters. Since the magical nature of their births would have resulted in the twins' immediate banishment, the king and queen announce the birth of only one daughter, Princess Flissara. For 12 years, twins Flissa and Sara split the role of princess and the kingdom went about its business with only a few people entrusted with the secret. Suddenly, a dark magic spell again curses the queen, leaving her gravely ill with only hours to live. Flissa and Sara are forced to leave their safe, shared role. They pursue Gilward into the Twists, a magical yet terrifying place outside Kaloon, to convince him to reverse the deadly curse. They are helped along the way by Gilward's son Galric, and a cast of magical characters. The plot moves along quickly with twists, turns, and surprises that will keep readers engaged and eager for the next chapter. VERDICT On the surface, this first book of an intended series may seem like a simple fairy tale, but its colorful detail and complicated characters will leave readers eager for the next installment.—Anne Jung-Mathews, Plymouth State University, NH
Princesses must escape their castle undetected and reveal a dangerous secret to their allies in an effort to save their mother.
Magic has been outlawed in Kaloon for years, but ever since the court jester Gilward caused a magical spectacle at a celebration for the upcoming birth of King Edwin and Queen Latonya's first child, the kingdom has been on high alert, and Gilward, as well as any other mages or people displaying banned characteristics, have been exiled to the Twists. Among the many things banned as signs of magic? Twins. Because of that decree, princesses Flissa and Sara have pretended to be one person, Princess Flissara, their entire lives. When their mother is struck by a deadly curse and Gilward is spotted near the castle grounds, the twins have less than two days to retrieve Gilward and convince him to reverse the curse. They both head out, accompanied by their songbird tutor, Primka; Nitpick, a cat; and Gilward's own son, Galric. Their journey to the Twists is appropriately replete with magical obstacles and bickering, but no challenge comes close to feeling insurmountable. The characters in the third-person narrative are lovable, but the pacing is off, with the first act dragging and the third rushing. The twins are biracial and have brown skin, but Kaloon seems to be an un-racialized society and the book otherwise adheres to the white default.
A perfectly enjoyable adventure that leaves room for a sequel without feeling unfinished. (Fantasy. 8-12)