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The Solstice Cup
By author: Rachel Dunstan Muller
Selling Points: Twins, Celtic mythology, superstition
Publisher: Orca Book Publishers
Pub Date: Apr/01/2009
Lexile Level: 670L
Pages: 176
Fiction Ages 9-12
Price:  $9.95
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Mackenzie saw something move behind her sister in the shadow of the stones. It was an arm, long and thin, reaching out from the dark space beneath the arch. Mackenzie froze as a hand began to move over the ground at the base of the stones. Three long bony fingers and a thumb, patting the ground, feeling for something.

Something sinister happened to Mackenzie's twin sister Breanne the last time the two girls were in Ireland. Now they're back and the winter solstice is approaching. Breanne scoffs at their elderly relatives' tales of fair folk and banshees and the thin barrier between two worlds, but Mackenzie remembers what happened to Breanne five years before—at the summer solstice. Mackenzie is convinced the Otherworld is real, but is it a place of enchantment or enslavement for humans?
Ladysmith Chronicle - August 5, 2009
"Dunstan Muller creates a lovely but sinister fairy world full of beautiful food and music...[She is] an engaging writer, who keeps the plot moving quickly and surprisingly."
Canadian Children's Book News - August 1, 2009
"Detailed, descriptive language brings the faerie world and its inhabitants vividly to life, creating the sense that there is something more sinister going on than what is initially revealed to the reader (and the twins)...Fast-paced and suspenseful."
Southwestern Ohio Young Adult Materials Review Group - July 21, 2009
"A great magical story with fun complications like special berries that prevent a memory loss enchantment. The fast moving plot is supported from all angles by supernatural details that require quick thinking by the twins if they ever want to return to the mortal world. Highly recommended."
Booklist - May 15, 2009
"A good introduction into the sinister world of pixies. The imagery... is creepy, but not gruesome, and should enchant and engage readers who might have been hesitant to read a 'fairy story' in the first place."
Resource Links - April 1, 2009
"Devoted fantasy readers will enjoy the majesty and danger of the Otherworld, and the rituals of the solstice. The rich description, interestingly different twins, and quickly moving plot should enchant young readers."
Kirkus Reviews - March 15, 2009
"The fast pace, believable dialogue (particularly Breanne's adolescent baditude) and relatively short length make this a good choice for reluctant readers seeking a fiendish-faery fix."
CM Magazine - February 20, 2009
"A thoroughly satisfying tale where all the protagonists' actions are true to their character and everyone works through difficulties in a completely believable-if fantastical-way...It's a great story! Highly Recommended."


Resource Links "The Year's Best", commended  CA  2009
CCBC Best Books, commended  CA  2010

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Middle Reader Fiction

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