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Nocturne Hardcover – June 8, 2010

3.9 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 5-10–Abandoned as a baby and left in the care of Anatole, the most powerful wizard on Wicker Street, 15-year-old Flannery Lane is determined to find the answers to her mysterious past. Fearing that magic will be her undoing, Anatole limits her knowledge and practice of the arts, thinking he is protecting her, but he is not the wizard he once was and Flan's magic is so strong that she takes matters into her own hands. She begins to run his shop and the townspeople have no idea that she is the one who is creating the charms, spells, and amulets they require, as well as secretly practicing and teaching herself what she can. Things seem fine until an evil presence threatens all that Flan holds dear and she realizes she is the only one with the power to make things right. Harkrader weaves a compelling tale of vampires and magic in an “old world” time period that perfectly sets the tone. The story is dark and eerie with plenty of fast-paced excitement, adventure, and even a little romance. Readers will root for this strong, resourceful heroine as she uncovers clues and solves her mysterious past. Not all the loose ends are neatly tied up, leaving room for a possible sequel.–Donna Rosenblum, Floral Park Memorial High School, NY. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 820L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Mirrorstone (June 8, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786955023
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786955022
  • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 1.1 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,408,086 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Mrs. L VINE VOICE on September 29, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Flannery Lane was abandoned by her mother on the front steps of a magician's home as a baby, and luckily for her the magician, Anatole, decided he would give her the kind of home she deserved. Flannery has been studying magic her whole life- determined to prove that she can make a difference. She has a difficult time proving to Anatole just how helpful her magic may be when she has so many restrictions and limitations... all applied by Anatole. But now is her chance. Anatole is sick and she has no choice but to run his shop as if she were him. And now the town's problems are pushing her to her max and a charming stranger comes a knocking... Vampires? Secrets? Can Flannery handle the secrets that she uncovers?

Smothered by her uncle's love and extremely protective nature, Flannery is overly restless and you can feel her frustration. Although not always well behaved, she is loyal and kind to her uncle and his cute familiar... (a hedgehog!) I absolutely loved the fact that he had a hedgehog, I've been aching for one myself. It was enjoyable watching Flannery and her feelings evolve for Pascoe, our charming yet strange mystery man. Yet there wasn't enough of the two together. I really felt as if something was missing from the story and maybe that was what it was- albeit it was a fun story.

This book is easy to fly through because it is written for those that are 9 - 12 years of age. I would highly recommend it for this age group and no others. Nocturne is notably predictable, but the writing is fresh. I'm thinking that I just missed some of the violence and inappropriate behavior that the books for this age group lack... I don't think that audience should read books with violence... I'm just sayin' ;) Don't get me wrong, this is a fast paced, mysteriously eerie book- just not quite my cup of tea. Give it a go if you are a big fan of magic or have a younger child that may want to read it!
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Format: Hardcover
Found as an abandoned baby by the bookseller and magician Anatole, Flannery Lane has been studying magic her whole life, but with many restrictions. But when Anatole falls ill suddenly, Flan takes it upon herself to run the shop as if she were her adopted uncle. The townsfolk have no idea that Flan herself is the magician helping them. And now strange happenings around town have begun pushing Flan to her limit. Then, a handsome, young visitor comes to the shop asking for information on vampire hunting. And Flan soon stumbles upon a dark secret that will threaten everyone she cares about.

Flan is a talented but restless girl, feeling stifled by her uncle, unable to perform or practice all of the magic that she'd like. But she remains loyal and loving towards Anatole, if not always obedient. Puppy love begins to blossom between Flan and her new visitor Pascoe, the mysterious vampire hunter. And though, his true identity and persona become obvious, Flan is still shocked. Geared towards middle readers, the story never gets truly violent and is appropriate for all ages. The story is dark, mysterious and eerie. With plenty of fast-paced excitement and fun, this companion novel to A Practical Guide to Vampires is a fantastic addition to the series.
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Format: Hardcover
I'm always impressed when an author can jump into a familiar genre, in this case paranormal/fantasy and despite the vast number of stories already out there within the genre, still manages to create their own unique spin. L.D. Harkrader did just that with Nocturne. Harkrader gave readers magic, mystery, vampires and suspense all rolled up into one. It was a great combination and while I will admit to not being sure quite what to expect with this book, I ended up really enjoying myself.

Flannery Lane is our heroine in Nocturne and she was adorable. As a little baby she was left in the care of the town wizard and has lived with her "uncle" ever since. Her uncle may be talented in the magic department but he has warned Flannery that she is not to use her magic, for the danger is too great. Being the rebellious teenager (we've all been there) she thinks that's ridiculous and that her uncle is just being overprotective. She decides to strike out on her own and begins to learn when her uncle isn't looking. But when danger begins to darken the streets of her small town and her uncle is cursed and becomes ill, Flannery has only herself to depend on. After many long debates with herself, Flannery decides it's her duty to use her magic to help her uncle and fellow townspeople.

Now of course we can't have Flannery going at it all alone right? In walks Pascoe, a mysterious newcomer who Flannery is certain hunts vampires for a living. Now that would be great, but it also doesn't hurt that he's tall, dark and handsome right? Will he be able to help Flannery with the evil that's come to her town? Will Flannery make it in time to help her friends who have started to disappear from Wicker Street? Go out and grab Nocturne when it hits the shelves and see for yourselves. It's a quick and fun read and I'm looking forward to reading what Harkrader has in store for us next.
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Format: Hardcover
When I was a child, I devoured fantasy books like other kids chomped up candy corn at Halloween. I'd grab six or seven books a week from my neighborhood library, then closet myself in my room and get lost in the fantastic fantasy worlds of E. Nesbit, P.L. Travers, and Edward Eager (to name a few). Because I felt my own life was less than desirable, I used these books as a form of "escape." These books were my "safe places."

It's hard to find children's books nowadays that embody those wonderful worlds of fantasy that I used to inhabit, the ones where the author so skillfully layers detail upon detail, until you are using all five senses to experience the world he/she has built. Nocturne by L.D. Harkrader is such a book.

Imagine my delight when I came upon this book and started reading: "Flan was tending her uncle's shop--Monsieur Anatole's Books, Wonders, and Charms. Although, in truth, she wasn't tending the shop half as diligently as she was tending her own curiosity."

By the time I'd turned the last page, I was completely and utterly lost in this magical world--a world of spells and enchantments, vampires and butchers, magicians and giggly teenaged village girls. Harkrader is so successful at building this little village and creates characters that are so fleshed-out and believable that you will find yourself blinking a few times when you come up for air.

I heartily recommend this book to all lovers of fantasy, both children and adults who were once children.

And I am hoping that Harkrader will come up with a sequel or perhaps, even better, a series! I love these characters--especially Flan--so much, and just hate to say "good-bye."
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