Serafina returned in the third installment of Robert Beatty’s epic Biltmore series and she did not disappoint. I love the imagination that went into the creation of this character and her story. I live in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, an easy hour drive to the Blue Ridge Parkway, and I absolutely obsess over this region! The scenery is so majestic and breathtaking that I can understand how it can inspire a writer like Beatty to create wonderful characters like Serafina, Braeden, and Waysa and plot lines such as a dark forest man wanting to take over the mountains, or a young girl being able to turn into a black panther. I enjoy the elements of heritage and folklore that are in these books as well as Serafina’s ability to press on against the odds. This particular book started off great with Serafina waking up buried alive in a shallow grave. The rest of the book followed a slower paced plot than the previous books, and I still think the second book, Serafina and the Twisted Staff, is my favorite. But overall, this I highly recommend this book to anyone who loved the first two books. I’m always shocked at how dark this book is considering it is a juvenile title, but then again I guess it’s really no darker than some other juvenile fantasy series. As I’ve mentioned before, the fantasy genre is for many people seen as a version of escapism, but it also a glimpse into reality and the issues we face every day. Not sugar coating the level of evil in this story was a great way to incorporate real-world issues into a juvenile fantasy.
Beatty also says in his Author’s Note that there is a forthcoming series that takes place in the same region of Appalachia whose story may at some point intersect with the Serafina storyline. I’m so excited! I definitely encourage you to pick up this book. It is fun and sassy and full of Blue Ridge adventures!
Have you read the Serafina series yet? Share your thoughts in the comments below!