Wardens of Eternity

Blink. Jan. 2020. 368p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780310767183.
Gr 7 Up–It’s 1939 in New York City, and Ziva remembers nothing of her parents except that they abandoned her. She grew up in an orphanage feeling like an outsider because of her darker skin tone, and learned to rely solely on herself and her mysterious protective powers. Everything changes when she is attacked by a kriosphinx, an Egyptian mythological creature, and siblings Sayer and Nasira Bahri intervene in the battle. They sweep her away from a world of poverty into one of ancient magic, globe-trotting, and delicious French toast. She learns that she is part of the North African Medjai tribe and descended from Queen Nefertari, which puts her on a quest to bring the Queen back to life. While the Egyptian gods have supposedly abandoned humanity, they often come to earth to tempt or help Ziva, with Anubis as her protector, and Set portrayed as a villain with a cryptic vendetta against Nefertari. Nasira becomes her magic/fighting instructor while Sayer teaches her hieroglyphics and opens her heart to romance. This historical fantasy novel is rapidly paced, with quick changes of settings and abrupt insights from Anubis. Ziva picks up fighting and magic with an ease that astonishes other characters, while offering no explanation why she can do all of this before training. Though the initial story line is intriguing, multiple plot holes keep this from being a tale that will fully captivate readers or leave them wondering what comes next.
VERDICT An additional purchase where stories of mythology are in high demand.

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