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Children's LiteratureCharlie Bone hears voices. Not just any voices—he hears voices of people in paintings and photographs. As one of the endowed children descended from the Red King, Charlie is part of a magical, mysterious group trying to keep the forces of good in the world balanced with the forces of evil. In this latest installment in the "Charlie Bone" series, readers begin a new school year with Charlie and a new cast of interesting characters. A new teacher, Tantalus Ebony, is frighteningly stern at times and at others, droopingly drowsy. A new student seems to be literally magnetic and up to no good. Surrounded by old friends and new, Charlie sets out to save his friend Billy from his new adopted parents, while investigating a mysterious phantom horse and a castle made of mirrors. Despite his unusual abilities, Charlie remains an approachable, empathetic character as he struggles with his personal desire to find his missing father. The cast of characters and their magical abilities is vast, and a genealogy chart and prologue are necessary additions to help unfamiliar readers understand the relationships within the book. However, the variety and creativity of this magical world are sure to please fantasy readers. 2005, Orchard Books/Scholastic, Ages 12 up.