This daring, thrill-a-minute fantasy adventure will delight girls from 9 to 109. In the year Seventeen-Twelvety, in a place similar to Regency England, Miss Artemisia Fitz–Willoughby falls down the stairs at the Angels Academy for Young Ladies, and the resulting knock on the head brings her to her senses. She remembers a forgotten past, as the daughter of Molly Faith, the notorious female pirate known as Piratica.
Art tracks down her mother's crew and embarks upon an unlikely adventure, vowing to avenge her mother's death and recover buried treasure. Unfortunately, her recently returned memories are not utterly reliable, and every time Art thinks she's gotten to the bottom of her mother's story, the tale takes another twisty turn.
Filled with rip-roaring adventure and laugh-out-loud scenarios, this novel should be savored like a rich dessert. The humor occasionally ventures on the farcical but doesn't lessen the emotional impact of this story. Readers will find themselves searching out the tiny details that make the world-building here so charming, and Lee's facility with language makes each page a pleasure. With a spirit of warmth and fun she has produced a tale for all ages—one that will be particularly appreciated by girls who would rather be Indiana Jones or Captain Jack Sparrow than be rescued by them. Not to be missed! (Sep., 320 pp., $17.99)
Jen Talley Exum