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Phoenix Rising #1: Elissa's Quest (Phoenix Rising Trilogy) by [Verrillo, Erica]
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Phoenix Rising #1: Elissa's Quest (Phoenix Rising Trilogy) Kindle Edition

4.9 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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Length: 354 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Age Level: 9 - 12 Grade Level: 4 - 7

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Thirteen-year-old Elissa, an orphan of High Crossing, hides her ability to speak to animals and daydreams about finding her unknown father. When he suddenly appears to take her away, the adolescent's rosy dreams of a fond parent vanish; Elissa learns that she is the princess of Castlemar and that her father plans to trade her to a desert warlord in a diplomatic exchange. In the Citadel of the Khan, Elissa struggles for control of her destiny and of her kingdom. Despite conventional plot elements, Verillo's storytelling moves right along, buoyed by humorous exchanges with talking beasts, gripping escape scenes, and a tense, dramatic conclusion. Elissa's coming-of-age experiences include the arrival of her first menstrual period—an element not commonly seen in the fantasy genre. A sympathetic heroine and well-placed hints about her fate will build readers' anticipation for the next installment in the Phoenix Rising trilogy. Rutan, Lynn

About the Author

Erica Verrillo is a world traveler who has worked and studied in a variety of fields, including classical music, Latin American history, linguistics, folk dance, anthropology, refugee aid, and speech communication. She has worked primarily as a teacher of languages, public speaking, linguistics, and music. She lives in Massachusetts with her two children. Elissa's Quest is her first book for children.


From the Hardcover edition.

Product Details

  • File Size: 601 KB
  • Print Length: 354 pages
  • Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers (March 10, 2009)
  • Publication Date: March 12, 2009
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001V7U71I
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #970,527 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Katharine A. Cartwright on July 13, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This book is a real "page turner!" Verrillo's unique and creative writing style enhances the reader's experience through a masterfully woven tale connected by threads of intrigue, humor, and colorful descriptions. Although the target audience may be adolescent girls, adults will enjoy this just as much. I can't wait to read the next two books in this trilogy. Kudos to the author! Keep them coming.
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Format: Hardcover
Erica Verrillo has created an immensely evocative landscape with splendid characters in the story "Elissa's Quest". How could we not embrace "a girl who knew her own mind even if she did not always choose to speak it". Elissa is humble yet brave, and certainly up to the task given her as she finds that, "he who will not follow the fates will be dragged by them". She has a "gift" which she uses to great advantage with each step she takes on her journey involving intrigue and self discovery. Elissa learns the true history of her family, and of the larger geographical domain where she is born when the time comes for her to enter into the real world of politics, treachery, and the abuse of power. Add to this mix the impending threat of environmental change, talking animals, and courageous characters that inspire hope for the perception of human potential.
In this tale we follow Elissa as she is thrust into a situation of change not unlike the world we know. She experiences her own biological changes, participates in rites of initiation, and most importantly, learns how to use her gifts in a world that encompasses diverse cultures, and spiritualities beyond her doorstep where people are reduced to bargaining chips. She creates alliances with the animals, the Ankaa, Maya of the Water People, and the beautiful Blue People. How she resolves conflict is admirable. She discovers her truth, the importance of the healers, the healing powers of the lake, and something about wisdom.
Verrillo's writing is spiced with humor, the animal's perspectives are right on, and the maxims useful to reflect on. The vividly eloquent passages provide the perfect vehicle for travel through Elissa's world. The first book of the Phoenix Rising Trilogy is a very good story.
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Format: Hardcover
Elissa's Quest is a very entertaining novel with mystery, danger, magic, humor, and strong female characters. In short, the orphaned Elissa learns her true identity, becomes a woman and discovers her inner wisdom. Elissa does not seek adventure, but when it comes to her in the form of travels through forest and desert, kidnapping, escape, unexpected alliances and exotic settings, she rises to each occasion. Elissa's story emphasizes the values of kindness and respect, as well as strength and resourcefulness. Women are depicted as powerful, valuable members of their communities. This book would make a lovely gift for girls around ages 11-14. I can't wait for the next book in the trilogy!
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Format: Hardcover
No one would suspect that a thirteen year old shy girl, who spends most of her time alone would be harboring dreams of high adventure. Nor would they know that she speaks with animals, that is unless they witnessed her relationship with a donkey named Gertrude.
All the elements are here in a stunning debut novel that introduces a new kind of heroine...a healer. This is only Book One. I'm excited to see the next.
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Format: Hardcover
Erica Verrillo's ELISSA'S QUEST tells of a girl who leads a lonely solitary life, knows nothing of her family, and hides her magical gift from the world. He's a healer's apprentice, but dreams of excitement and adventure - until a guest changes her life. This is Book One of the Phoenix Rising trilogy and provides a powerful fantasy indeed.
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Format: Hardcover
I'd come across Elissa's Quest by chance. When I saw the cover, I had to read the description. When I saw that it was a YA fantasy novel, I knew I had to read it, this genre being among my top favorites. I must say, I was wonderfully pleased. Elissa's Quest introduces us to a young girl with an amazing ability. She can talk to animals. This ability, along with other events, causes her to embark on a journey where she learns she has an important role in a prophecy. The novel ends with the need to know what happens next. It was adventurous, fun, and magical and I can't wait to see where Elissa ends up in the following book.
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Format: Kindle Edition
An incredibly imaginative landscape with a brave heroine who's adventures are enthralling and humorous. Elissa's ability to speak to animals allows for a range of exciting experiences that teach her vital life lessons and develop her true, wonderful character. Watching Elissa grow in this wondrous world is intimate and delightful in the best way. Verrillo creates a fun, coming-of-age fantasy novel that will keep you on your toes!
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Format: Paperback
Verrillo has written an exciting, mysterious novel that left me anxious for the sequel! Elissa's adventures are easily identifiable despite taking place within a fantasy-based world. Her modesty and fearlessness create a powerful female protagonist, and Verrillo's detail in both character and setting description completely encompass this novel from beginning to end!
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