Never After

Melissa DLa Cruz

Roaring Brook Press

Filomena Jefferson-Cho of North Pasadena, California, feels her life is stifling. Her adoptive parents are way over-protective, hardly daring to allow Filomena out of their sight. The bullying she gets from the “Fettuccine Alfredos,” the popular girl-gang at her private school, is growing worse. If it wasn’t for the escape she finds in the hugely-popular Never After fantasy books, Filomena doesn’t know what she’d do. She’s so looking forward to buying the thirteenth and final book, but when Filomena visits the bookstore on release day she hears devastating news. The hasn’t been published. Not only that, someone is following her.

On the boring streets of North Pasadena Filomena’s ordinary world collides with that of Never After, the realm where all fairy stories coexist. Its heroes Jack the Giant Stalker and his buddy Alistair are real and they’re here to save Filomena so she can help save Never After. Long ago Carabosse, the thirteenth fairy, cursed the land then disappeared. Now an evil queen is leading an invasion of ogres in the search for Aladdin’s Lamp. If she finds it and uses its powerJack’s peaceful world will cease to exist.

… a delicate touch on the sensitive issue of adoption …

Filomena is drawn into Never After along with Jack and Alistair where they face horrible ogres, dragons, and wolves—and yet more horrible ogresUnexpected allies, unexpected foes, and the real reason Carabosse disappeared all lead to a thrilling climax. Will Filomena’s life ever be the same?

Never After is a charming and thoroughly enjoyable romp through a world peopled by the fertile imagination of Melissa De La Cruz. The author has a delicate touch on the sensitive issue of adoption and doesn’t talk down to her readers.