Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

The Amaranth Enchantment

The Amaranth Enchantment

Julie Berry
Fiction
For ages 12 and up
Bloomsbury USA Childrens, 2009   ISBN: 1599903342

When she was just five years old, Lucinda’s parents went out to a ball and they never came home. Since then, Lucinda has lived with her uncle and her cruel aunt. Her aunt beats Lucinda, and forces her to work very hard, and Lucinda starts to believe that her life will never get any better. Then, on the same day, three people visit the jewelry shop that Lucinda’s uncle owns, and Lucinda’s life changes forever. One visitor is the prince of the land who is looking for a gift for his fiancée; the other is a mysterious woman who wants Lucinda’s uncle to put an enormous jewel into a new setting. The third person is a street boy who steals into Lucinda’s attic bedroom looking for a warm place to sleep.

   The very next day, Lucinda’s uncle dies and her aunt throws her out into the street. Not having anywhere to go, Lucinda decides to take the jewel back to its owner. She is horrified when she discovers that the street boy whom she gave shelter to the night before stole the gem out of her pocket during the night.

   Luckily the gem’s owner is a good person - even if she is a witch - and she treats Lucinda with kindness. She asks Lucinda to try to get the gem back. What neither one of them knows, is that the thief has already sold the gem, and it is going to be terribly hard to get it back.

   In this delightful tale, elements from the Cinderella story combine with adventure, magic, and romance to give readers a thoroughly enjoyable reading experience. The characters are deliciously entertaining, and readers will quickly find themselves getting caught up in Lucinda’s story. With many unexpected surprises and a very satisfying ending, this is a story that readers will remember long after they have read the last page. 

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