Wednesday, May 12, 2021

The Last Fallen Star by Graci Kim - ADVISABLE


The Last Fallen Star (Gifted Clans #1)
by Graci Kim
, 336 pages. Rick Riordan Presents (Disney-Hyperion), 2021. $17.

Language: PG (4 swears, 0 “f”); Mature Content: G; Violence: PG

BUYING ADVISORY: MS - ADVISABLE

AUDIENCE APPEAL: HIGH

Riley has always understood that she is a saram, or non-magical person, adopted into a family of witches. She tries to be supportive of her sister’s upcoming confirmation as a witch, a ceremony all witches have at age 13, but the ceremony is also a reminder that Riley won’t have one when she turns 13 in a few months. That is, unless they manage to pull off a magic-sharing spell during the ceremony where Riley can gain half of her sister’s magic, which can’t be that difficult.

Riley and both her biological and adoptive families are Korean-American, and their story relies heavily upon Korean mythology. Having little knowledge of Korean mythology, I appreciate the balance Kim establishes between explaining necessary background information and letting actions teach readers about the gods and creatures that are involved. I enjoyed the side tasks Riley had to face on her way to the goal and felt the discouragement of Riley and her friends as everything seemed to be getting worse for the majority of their quest. While the book leads into an obvious need for a sequel, the ending is not a cliffhanger, which was appreciated by this reader.

Reviewer: Carolina Herdegen

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