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Matchbox Girls

Matchbox Girls

4.8 5
by Chrysoula Tzavelas

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Marley Claviger is just trying to get her life together. Stumbling into an ancient conflict between celestial forces is going to make that a whole lot harder...

When Marley wakes up to a phone call from a pair of terrified children, she doesn't expect to be pulled into a secret war. She rescues them from an empty house and promises to find their missing uncle. She


Marley Claviger is just trying to get her life together. Stumbling into an ancient conflict between celestial forces is going to make that a whole lot harder...

When Marley wakes up to a phone call from a pair of terrified children, she doesn't expect to be pulled into a secret war. She rescues them from an empty house and promises to find their missing uncle. She even manages to feed them dinner. But she barely feels competent to manage her own life, let alone care for small children with strange, ominous powers...

And when a mysterious angelic figure shows up and tries to claim the girls, it all falls apart...

Plagued by visions of disaster, Marley has no idea what she's gotten herself into, but she knows one thing: magical or not, the kids need her.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Freelance writer Marley Claviger, prone to anxiety attacks and visions of doom and disaster, is unexpectedly saddled with the four-year-old twin nieces of her friend Zachariah Thorne, who has inexplicably disappeared. Her problems progress rapidly from retrieving the twins' car seats from a locked car to protecting them from supernatural forces that want the girls for mysterious reasons of their own, while a California wildfire approaches over the hills. The opening chapters have a lot of promise; Marley is an engaging character with enjoyably strong female friendships, and as the otherworldly beings gather around her, the mood is intriguingly menacing. But eventually the narrative starts to drag under the weight of Tzavelas's (Nightlights: Disintegration) increasingly complicated mythology of angels and the Hush that keeps them from interfering with humans, the faeries and their own agendas, the Geometries of heaven, angelic and demon curses, kaiju, nephilim, and too much more.(Feb.)
CE Murphy
“Lovely worldbuilding and an unusual heroine surrounded by strong relationships and good intrigue kept me reading Matchbox Girls until well past my bedtime. Tzavelas has created a winning story universe and I’m impatient for the next book!”
Robin Owens
"An intriguing debut urban fantasy with intricate and deep wordbuilding and engaging characters in the heroine and two young girls. Children who are pawns in a game of power and the keys to the future...."
Jenna Moran
"You want to read Matchbox Girls because it will devour you. It will consume you. It will wrap around you and it will colonize your world with its shapes and symbols and its faces."

Product Details

Candlemark & Gleam
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.73(d)

Meet the Author

Chrysoula Tzavelas went to twelve schools in twelve years while growing up as an Air Force brat, and she never met a library she didn’t like. She now lives near Seattle with some random adults, miscellaneous animals, and a handy small child or two. She likes combed wool, bread dough, and gardens. She’s also a certified technology addict; it says so on her (trademark-redacted) music player.

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Matchbox Girls 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
GlindaHarrison More than 1 year ago
Fantastic start to new series! First, let me say that this is an AWESOME read! It stands out as a finely crafted urban fantasy that's very definitely not your typical fare. A very well-told story that unfolds organically, this is one of those books that draws you in from the first frantic phone call and keeps you riveted until the very end. The story is smart and thoughtful. The world building and metaphysics behind it are amazingly solid... The characters are captivating -- characters that are interesting, believable and, at the same time, totally compelling. It even has magical cats and dogs (who can resist those?) and a few angels, demons and other assorted celestial beings besides. It has two of the cutest little tykes you've ever seen for Very Important Characters. The fact that they happen to be stuck smack in the middle of a celestial war (as well as packing some serious magic of their own), just makes things really interesting. The protagonist, Marley, is one of the most satisfying characters I've encountered in a long time. She's flawed but she's not predictable. She manages to rise to the challenges she encounters yet not in a way that is forced and fake. She is the real deal. And what a discovery in author Chrysoula Tzavelas ! She writes with a lovely voice and there is a beautiful flow to both the narrative and the dialogue. I definitely want to read more from this author! Luckily, then, it appears that there is more of this story to come.... While the story wrapped up nicely, there are just enough unanswered questions to warrant a sequel (or two). And just in case anybody out there is listening: This would make a great movie! All in all, a great start to a very promising new series!
eheinlen More than 1 year ago
Chrysoula Tzavelas has a very accessible writing style, which makes this book just fly by as you read it. I loved the characters, they were so unique and well-developed that you felt instantly connected to them. I loved the story as it was just different enough to be unlike anything that I had previously read. The author gives you just enough clues throughout to make you think you know what's happening and then she sucks you in with the unknown. Great book!
BranwynReads More than 1 year ago
I love YA fiction, especially when it’s clever and engaging and keeps you guessing. And I love urban fantasy. And I love the name Branwyn. This book delivers all of the above (although you may not care so much about the name, however I almost named my firstborn Branwyn I love it so much … but since he was born a boy, I figured maybe he’d appreciate something more suited to a boy *grin* And then I took it for myself - as you can see!). The characters are well-written and interesting, the plot is different and while a little convoluted if you’re not paying attention – it’s better in my mind to be that way than having a plot so simple you can figure out where everything is going by chapter two and then just finish the book to prove yourself right. I also loved that the book had six females’ stories to follow – Marley (who is the lead in this book), Branwyn, Penny, AT, and the twins. I felt reading it that each of them had more to tell and we’d possibly be getting more stories or books about each – and I was right. Which is perfect, because I also love YA novels with strong female characters kicking butt and coming into their own.
donniedarkogirl More than 1 year ago
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. MATCHBOX GIRLS was a pleasant surprise to me. The concept of angels, demons and nephilim isn't new, but when the fae were also thrown into the mix, I was intrigued. Tzavelas took these beings and infused new energy into them and the urban fantasy genre. I connected with Marley right away as someone who also suffers from anxiety and panic attacks. Worries that seem illogical or not so bad to other people is catastrophic to me, especially worrying about something really bad happening. This is what Marley worries about the most - something terrible happening to someone. I loved to see great friendships among Marley, Branwyn, and Penny. It's rare to see strong female relationships in novels nowadays, and when I do come across them, I savor them! And oh the twins! I loved how Marley struggled a bit with the chaos they created when she first took care of them. It made the story so realistic because 4-year-old twins would be a handful. I've only had one 4-year-old at a time, so I can't imagine having two! They sound like cute girls, and I'd protect them like a mama bear as Marley does. Marley is super smart and has great instincts. She follows her gut feeling - if something doesn't feel right, she knows something is wrong, which was so refreshing to see in a heroine! The mystery disappearance of the twins' uncle, Zachariah and wondering how Marley would keep the girls safe from those beings who were after them kept me on the edge of my seat. I read MATCHBOX GIRLS in about three sittings, only because I had to sleep, lol. My only complaint is hard to explain. Some of the action was a little hard for me to picture because of the way it was described. It wasn't a huge issue or anything, and maybe it's just me. If you're looking for a fresh take on angels, fae, and the like, I recommend you pick up a copy of MATCHBOX GIRLS. I'm looking forward to reading the sequel, INFINITY KEY. As a matter of fact, I enjoyed MATCHBOX GIRLS so much, I've already bought the sequel so hopefully I can get to it soon!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago