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March/April 2023 Kids Indie Next List
“Plum wants to stay with her grandparents, taking care of their garden and animals. But when she is called to join the Guardians, she learns more about herself and her strengths. This book is for kids who love adventure, magic, and nature.”
— Alissa Hugel, Folio Books, San Francisco, CA
From two-time Newbery honor recipient Christina Soontornvat comes a compelling new young middle grade fantasy series for readers who love stories about animals, magic, and kids like them embracing their power to change the world.
Plum and her friends are traveling to the misty Bokati Island. There they will study with the mysterious Guardian Master Em, who is the keeper of the ancient forest there. The field trip comes just in time for Plum, who still can’t figure out why she’s so different from the other Novices on Lotus Island.
At first, Plum doesn’t know what to make of this quiet and sometimes gloomy place. But it doesn't take long to discover that Bokati is brimming with an incredible array of fascinating animals and plants.
When an unseen force begins to destroy the trees, putting the entire ecosystem at risk, Plum and her classmates must spring into action. Plum is determined to help, even though she's hiding secrets about her own Guardian powers from even her closest friends.
About the Author
Christina Soontornvat is the author of several books for young readers, including the Newbery Honor books The Last Mapmaker, A Wish in the Dark, and All Thirteen, and the bestselling graphic novel The Tryout. Christina holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and a master’s degree in Science Education. She spent a decade working in the science museum field, where she designed programs and exhibits to get kids excited about science and STEM. Christina lives in Austin, Texas, with her husband, two young children, and one old cat. You can learn more about her work at soontornvat.com.