The Buried and the Bound

Roaring Brook. (Buried and Bound Trilogy: Bk. 1). Jan. 2023. 384p. Tr $19.99. ISBN 9781250822208.
Gr 9 Up–What happens when a hedgewitch, a necromancer, and a cursed boy join forces to protect their magical town? A supernatural team is born in Hassan’s latest fantasy adventure. Aziza is a hedgewitch, tasked with protecting the fraying boundary between Blackthorn, MA, and the faery realm; but she has little support, and lately the job only seems to get harder and scarier. Her Lebanese-American grandfather is raising her on his own ever since her parents died mysteriously when she was very young. Accustomed to soldiering on alone, brusque Aziza is initially distrustful of Leo, a gregarious, open-hearted boy who offers his help in exchange for information that might help him break a curse that has plagued his family for years and has ripped the memory of his true love away from him. As the two become closer, they cross paths with Tristan, a new necromancer living in dire circumstances. Tristan became homeless after he came out to his parents and they kicked him out, leading him to make a desperate deal with an evil hag. As Aziza and Leo investigate the growing violence in Blackthorn, they realize that Tristan and his dark master may be the key to it all. Leo is described as having curly brown hair and tan skin while Tristan is coded as white. The teens’ journey to trusting each other is by turns heart-wrenching and hilarious, and the episodic nature of their quests will appeal to fans of supernatural shows like Sabrina or Wednesday. Although the main storyline is resolved, many questions remain unanswered, leaving readers desperate for the next installment.
VERDICT A first purchase for teen libraries.

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