Deadly Wish

240p. (A Ninja's Journey: Bk. 2). Boyds Mills. Sept. 2017. Tr $16.95. ISBN 9781629797779.
Gr 6–8—Fans of the first book in the series, Deadly Flowers, will not be disappointed when they rejoin Kata on another perilous journey. Kata is a ninja living among thieves. She is torn between trusting her ninja training and depending on a group of loyal friends. The story is a fast-paced combination of thrills, adventure, and horror. Kata is often on the brink of danger and has to rely on her training and on others to survive. In her latest mission, lives are at stake as she is cursed with the responsibility of protecting a precious jewel haunted by a deadly demon. Kata fights the urge to call upon the jewel to grant wishes, knowing that her wish can set a monstrous and powerful demon free. The novel introduces readers to many fantastic beasts from Japanese folklore, such as the kitsune (the trickster Japanese red fox) and the neko-mata (the sinister double-tailed cat). In this sequel, Kata has matured as an independent fighter who learns about friendship, trust, responsibility, and the freedom to make decisions. She realizes that relying on others can be helpful, even when they seem like a burden.
VERDICT A great option for tweens and younger teens interested in Japanese folklore and ninja action.

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