Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The Cracks in the Kingdom by Jaclyn Moriarty

Award-winning
Astonishingly original
Artistic and magical

Time slides around the world so strangely ...

It's not easy being Princess Ko.

Her family is missing, taken to the World through cracks in the Kingdom, which were then sealed tightly behind them.

Now Princess Ko is running the Kingdom, and war is looming.
To help her find her family, she gathers a special group of teens, including Elliot Baranski of the Farms. He's been writing secret letters to a Girl-in-the World named Madeleine Tully - and now the Kingdom needs her help.

Madeleine and Elliot must locate the missing royals, convince them of their true identities, and figure out how to unlock the dangerous cracks between the Kingdom and the World.

All before their enemies can stop them.



Completely exhilarating and brilliant and breath-taking and funny and clever and unexpected. Also: so much fun and delight and some very smiley swoony moments. Jaclyn Moriarty is amazing and The Cracks in the Kingdom is on my all time ultimate faves list.

A Corner of White was just the beginning. I loved it whole-heartedly (my fave book of 2012) and The Cracks in the Kingdom has taken my love for this series to a whole new level (is that even possible?)

The plot cracks along splendidly. Whereas A Corner of White needed more time world building, TCitK takes off from the first chapter. I couldn't put it down, and trust me, I tried. I wanted to savour it and stretch it out and linger for a while but I was compelled to keep flying through, greedy for more, desperate to see where Moriarty would take me. And Moriarty delivers. For the mid series book, it really amps everything up -- and while it sets up the third book perfectly with some new complications, it still delivers with so many satisfying climaxes and resolutions to plot threads from the 1st book and 2nd. (no spoilers here but be excited, guys! So much goodness unfolds!)

The way Moriarty wields all her threads together, she builds them and builds them into this stunning and startling climax, revelations and twists and unexpected flips. I did not see so much of it coming and the way everything unfolded was pretty much perfect. Moriarty is daring and genius. I felt exhilarated when I finished, breathless and giddy and silly and satisfied (except for wanting book three, the finale for this trilogy. stat.)

TCitK is not just a fun, compelling and original, magical book. It's so much more than that. It has Moriarty's off kilter and gorgeous, grin worthy prose, but beyond that I feel like it's all real. I care so much for this Kingdom and the World. The characters have completely won me over and I have a deep and real affection for them. 


I've always loved Elliot -- " the boy who knew exactly how to make a girl feel like some kind of carbonated sugar drink was running through her veins" (p.382). And Madeleine grew on me by the end of A Corner of White so that by the time I started The Cracks in the Kingdom she was firmly one of my fave literary heroines and I love spending time with her. I also love a new character in the series "a kid named Samuel from Olde Quaint who's a walking panic attack." (p.78). He is so endearing and earnest and I laughed out loud multiple times at his try-hard ways (laughing in a nice way ;))

Here are a few highlights from the book:

  • The letters are fantastic, charming and vibrant and a highlight (Moriarty is the queen of epistolary)
  • The trip to the Lake of Spells (best camping trip ever!)
  • The mystery of the 5 missing royals (so compelling and sad and suspenseful!)
  • The whole mystery with Elliot's dad (some really awesome revelations and conclusions!)
  • More science (so smart and interesting!) and more magic (of the quirky and funny and awesome kind) and more Colour attacks (love all the Colour scenes)
  • Secret security and characters with hidden agendas (love Sergio!)
  • The turquiose rain in Jagged Edge (another fave moment, so cool).
  •  Also, more travelling throughout the Kingdom of Cello (you se so much more of the strange and beautiful and unique world and it's inhabitants)
(I actually have a lot more highlights but they all crossover into spoilery territory...)

In conclusion: The Cracks in the Kingdom is one of the best books I have ever read, and The Colours of Madeleine is my favourite series of all time. The series is original and it shines so brightly with creativity and heart and humour and is everything I could ever ask for in the most ultimate reading experience. I so hope you give this series a go, and I hope it brings you just as much joy as it does to me.

The Cracks in the Kingdom @ Pan Macmillan
The Cracks in The Kingdom @ goodreads

Thanks so much to Pan Macmillan for my review copy!

The Cracks in the Kingdom will release in Australia next week, Feb 27

(For my international readers, it's out in March)



AUTHOR INFORMATION

Jaclyn Moriarty grew up in Sydney's north-west and studied Law and English on three continents - at Sydney University in Australia, Yale in the US and Cambridge in England. She spent four years working as a media and entertainment lawyer and now writes full time so that she can sleep in each day. She lives in Sydney with her son Charlie and is learning the cello.

11 comments:

  1. I just received an ARC of this in the mail yesterday and I cannot wait to read it now! I loved A Corner of White, the characters and revelations creeping into my heart, so I'm excited to return to this world and finally get a few answers to all the questions from Book 1. Fantastic review, Nomes - I'll need to start this ASAP! ;)

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  2. Aaarrgh. I'm yet to read this series and I can't believe I haven't.

    You just reminded me why I love Jaclyn Moriarty so much, Nomes.

    You write the best reviews.
    :)

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  3. I am so excited for this. Read A Corner of White last year on your recommendation and LOVED it.

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  4. I so want to read this series, it sounds so epic and fun and interesting!!

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  5. Wonderful review, hun! This really was a perfect sequel, I had no issues stepping back into this world, and I'd love to see some turquoise rain!

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  6. Oh, Nomes--such a lovely review as always! So lovely that it makes me regret that I never got around to reading the first book. (Shhhh. *looks around guiltily*) I just got this one as well, so I really need to remedy all that soon. I know she's been one of your favorite authors for a long time, so I'm glad to see you're loving her latest novels just as much as you do your old favorites.

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

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  7. One of the many Aussie authors I ADORE thanks to you, Nomes! I haven't read the first in this series yet (I've made myself promise to STOP buying books I can't afford. Frowny face.) But it is on my list-- I keep it waiting there for the next gift certificate that comes my way!

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  8. OMG I'm sold, you convinced me ... I'd better get my act together and read my dust covered copy *shame face* of A Corner of White so I can get to this treasure. Fab review Nomes :)

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  9. I loved The Cracks in the Kingdom too :) It was SO EPIC, I can't think of a stronger trilogy (and I've only read the first 2 books!).

    I am in awe of the way Moriarty keeps every facet of the book going strong: the worlds, the prose, the characters, the sheer detail and scope - all so interesting, magical; and yet believable. Like you, I was so drawn into the story of these wonderful worlds and characters that I read the book way too fast and can't wait for the next instalment.

    Reading your review is awesome Nomes, brings back the magic :)

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  10. I loved The Cracks in the Kingdom too :) It was SO EPIC, I can't think of a stronger trilogy (and I've only read the first 2 books!).

    I am in awe of the way Moriarty keeps every facet of the book going strong: the worlds, the prose, the characters, the sheer detail and scope - all so interesting, magical; and yet believable. Like you, I was so drawn into the story of these wonderful worlds and characters that I read the book way too fast and can't wait for the next instalment.

    Reading your review is awesome Nomes, brings back the magic :)

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  11. I loved A Corner of White too and have this one in the pile by my bed...thanks for the great rave review...it has tempted me to make this book next cab off the rank :-)

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Thanks for the commenty love :)

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