The Ruby Key (Moon and Sun Series #1)

The Ruby Key (Moon and Sun Series #1)

4.3 12
by Holly Lisle
     
 

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Mankind is Sunkind

And rules by the light;

Nightlings are Moonkind,

And rule in the night;

Or there will be war.

Human and Nightlings are never to meet, but when Genna and her brother Dan venture into the old forest at night, they encounter a Nightling slave who reveals a terrifying secret: Genna and Dan's village chieftain has made a dangerous deal

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Overview

Mankind is Sunkind

And rules by the light;

Nightlings are Moonkind,

And rule in the night;

Or there will be war.

Human and Nightlings are never to meet, but when Genna and her brother Dan venture into the old forest at night, they encounter a Nightling slave who reveals a terrifying secret: Genna and Dan's village chieftain has made a dangerous deal with Letrin, ruler of the Nightlings, offering the lives of his people in exchange for his own immortality.

To save the villagers and themselves, Genna and Dan strike their own bargain with the Nightling lord, but the stakes are even higher. Now, the siblings must embark upon a journey along the Moonroads, and bring back the key to Letrin's downfall.

Written in haunting, lyrical prose, Holly Lisle transports readers to the twilit realms of the Night Worlds.

Holly Lisle is a native of Salem, Ohio, but she's also lived in Alaska, Costa Rica, and Guatemala. She is the author of many bestselling adult suspense and fantasy novels. She has three children, a handful of cats, and believes writing is the best job a person can have. She currently resides in Georgia, with her family.

Holly Lisle is a native of Salem, Ohio, but she's also lived in Alaska, Costa Rica, and Guatemala. She is the author of many bestselling adult suspense and fantasy novels. She has three children, a handful of cats, and believes writing is the best job a person can have. She currently resides in Georgia with her family.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
AGERANGE: Ages 9 to 14.

In book one of the "Moon and Sun" series, the relationship between humans and the mysterious nightlings changes during Offering Night. Genna and her brother Dan risk their lives to save their mother, then stumble upon the truth about a nefarious plot of their father's best friend, Banris. He has bartered away the lives of the entire village for his own immortality by making a deal with Letrin, the corrupt nightling king. Genna and Dan befriend a rebellious nightling slave who helps them make their own deal with Letrin. They must now travel through the nightling world, as well as forgotten parts of their own human world, for a reason. As their journey progresses, Genna and Dan discover secrets, magic, and the treacherous Moonroads, as well as the fact they are not only fighting to save their loved ones, but all of humankind. Author Holly Lisle has previously written adult fantasy novels, and this book reads with adult complexity. It is immediately mesmerizing and creates a deep, unique world where the future depends on a 14-year-old girl. This is a good book to generate discussion about responsibility, leadership, and trust. Reviewer: Renee Farrah

VOYA - David Goodale
Lisle invents a distinctive world where an uneasy truce exists between humankind, who rule by daylight, and nightlings, who rule by moonlight. One night, fourteen-year-old Genna and her brother, Dan, meet a nightling slave named Yarri. She informs them that their village's ruler has made an evil pact with the Kai-Lord of the Nightlings, Letrin, offering his own village in exchange for immortality. Genna and Dan forge their own pact with the Kai-Lord in order to save their village. With the aid of Yarri and a talking cat, Genna and Dan learn to navigate the moonroads that allow travel between worlds as they seek to satisfy their half of the bargain with Letrin and earn the ruby key. Lisle creates an imaginative story, but the book's biggest defect is the amount of help Genna and Dan are given. Yarri and the cat seem to pull them along and direct them at every turn. Two-thirds of the way through the book, the author arranges for Genna, the protagonist, to be alone. Not so coincidentally, the next chapter is titled "Alone," but even from this point Genna seems to be swept forward mostly by circumstance. The subject matter and cover will tempt teens to snatch this richly detailed fantasy, the first book in the Moon and Sun series, off the shelves, but other titles such as Wooding's Poison (Orchard, 2005/VOYA December 2005) and De Lint's Little (Grrl) Lost (Viking, 2007/VOYA October 2007) are better choices for teens searching for fantasy with strong female heroines. Reviewer: David Goodale
School Library Journal

Gr 5-8- Gennadara and her brother, Danrith, live in the primitive village of Hillrush and are surrounded by danger. Like other humans, they can go out only in daylight, and they have an uneasy truce with the nightlings, creatures of the nearby forest who only come out after dark. All are ruled by Letrin, an arrogant and powerful being who lives in a kind of underground fairy mound. Genna and Dan's father is thought to be dead, and the children are terrified of their evil Uncle Banris, who conspires to marry their very ill mother. When the siblings sneak out at night to milk sap from the taandu trees to cure their mother, they are catapulted into a series of wild adventures involving a young nightling, a talking cat, magic moonroads, and plenty of beasties and ghoulies. They must find a young man named Doyati to save their family and the villagers from death at the hands of Letrin. While the book offers enough requisite fantasy elements-a seemingly impossible quest, plenty of magic, poetic language, and brave young protagonists-the plot twists need too much overt explanation to ring true, and the overly complicated fantasy structure sinks under its own weight. The nightling is an intriguing character, but her facile ability to smooth over difficulties strains credulity.-Quinby Frank, Green Acres School, Rockville, MD

Kirkus Reviews
In this first volume in a new series, the dwindling human race clings to a tenuous peace with the fairy-like nightlings, years after a fateful epic battle. Fourteen-year-old (human) Genna and her younger brother Danrith stumble into this conflict one moonlit evening when they encounter a forest nightling who warns them that their uncle has made a bargain (involving their murder!) with nightling Kai-Lord Letrin in exchange for his immortality. Genna and Dan immediately travel to Arrienda to bravely cut their own deal with Letrin to save the lives of their family and fellow villagers. What follows is an often-suspenseful journey through moonroads and shadows haunted by a grotesque monster worm, warrior ghosts, demon dogs and worse. A sharp-tongued cat offers rare comic relief along the way, though the abundance of fond observations of cat behavior seems excessive. Lisle's overall clean, casual style sometimes clashes with both a stiffer formality and the occasional bafflingly convoluted sentence. Still, fantasy fans will find both a satisfying adventure quest and the lively coming-of-age story of the reluctant heroine Genna. (Fantasy. 11-14)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780545000130
Publisher:
Scholastic, Inc.
Publication date:
04/28/2009
Series:
Moon and Sun Series, #1
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
384
Sales rank:
1,451,191
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 7.50(h) x 0.90(d)
Age Range:
10 - 13 Years

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