Princess Ko's been bluffing about the mysterious absence of her father, desperately trying to keep the government running on her own. But if she can't get him back in a matter of weeks, the consequence may be a devastating war. So under the guise of a publicity stunt she gathers a group of teens each with a special ability from across the kingdom to crack the unsolvable case of the missing royals of Cello.
Chief among these is farm-boy heartthrob Elliot Baranski, more determined than ever to find his own father. And with the royal family trapped in the World with no memory of their former lives, Elliot's value to the Alliance is clear: He's the only one with a connection to the World, through his forbidden communications with Madeleine.
Through notes, letters, and late nights, Elliot and Madeleine must find a way to travel across worlds and bring missing loved ones home. The stakes are high, and the writing by turns hilarious and suspenseful, as only Jaclyn Moriarty can be.
About the Author
Jaclyn Moriarty is the award-winning author of The Year of Secret Assignments, The Murder of Bindy Mackenzie, The Ghosts of Ashbury High, The Spell Book of Listen Taylor, and the Colors of Madeleine trilogy. A former media and entertainment lawyer, Jaclyn grew up in Sydney, Australia, lived in the United States, Canada, and UK, and now lives in Sydney again. She is very fond of chocolate, blueberries, and sleep.
Read an Excerpt
From THE CRACKS IN THE KINGDOM:
They all hesitated, deciphering the warning bells.
“That's twinned Colors.”
“Blue and – what? Aquamarine?”
“No, Blue and Green.”
“Then it must be Green 6(b). They travel together.”
Sergio spun on his heel. “Then it is Turquoise Rain! It is what I have wanted to know ever since I am coming to your Kingdom!”
The Princess and Keira were both grinning. They caught each other's eyes.
“You've been in Turquoise Rain before too?”
Nobody else had.
“Anyone who wants to go inside, go now,” the Princess said, swinging her elbow back toward the kitchen door. “But I'm staying out.”
“What's it like?” Elliot asked.
They were speaking over the warning bells, which continued to chime. Nearby, doors were slamming, shutters clattering, footsteps running. Something made of glass hit the ground, spiraled, then stilled. The laneway was empty.
“It's like possibility,” Keira said, her eyes searching the night sky.
“You feel wild,” the Princess explained. “Like you could dance on the wildness –catch hold of it, straddle it, and fly it.”
“I have read,” said Sergio, “that it makes the world sing with hidden doors. That the effect is so beautiful you wring it from your clothes for days to come.”
Samuel took a step backward, eyes alarmed.
“Turquoise Rain!” He crouched to find where his hat had fallen, hands trembling. “It is dangerous! It has been known to quicken the heart so that some fall dead!”
“Not many,” the Princess countered. “And they've usually got a preexisting condition or something.” A thought occurred to her. The volume of the bells was increasing, so she shouted to be heard: “Some people get addicted. They do it once and then basically ruin their lives chasing it around the Kingdom.”
The bells stopped.
“So if you're an addictive personality” – the Princess looked from Sergio to Elliot – “it's maybe a mistake.”
“And if this is your first time in a night-dwelling city,” Keira added, twisting on her heel, “it'll be sensory overload already.”
She regarded Elliot.
“Especially you, Elliot, since you're pumping already about your dad.”
He shrugged. “I'll risk it.”
Sergio danced down the laneway. “When will it start?”
“I will see you all on the morrow!” Samuel pressed up against the kitchen door. “Please to all be alive at that point.” He reached for the handle – and a drop hit his hand.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I was really looking forward to the sequel to A CORNER OF WHITE and I was not disappointed. Moriarty's style of writing leaves you feeling as if this story is fluff and adorable, until she smacks you in the face with deep truths and plot twists. Characters are even more fully developed than in her first and she addresses the difficulties of her characters with both humor, insightful analogies and compassionate writing. Her prose is beautiful and her descriptions are unusual as much as they are honest and truthful. I'm amazed at how Moriarty looks at the world and translates it into words for the reader to absorb. This story is both heartfelt and exciting, and much different than the sparse, minimalistic YA books common today. It is refreshing and whimsical while still a deep story with unforgettable characters and an exciting plot. Can't wait for book 3!