Chapter Books – Theodosia and the Serpents of Chaos

Theodosia lives in a museum. Well, not really, but her Victorian-era parents who run the museum are always forgetting to go home, and Theodosia ends up sleeping in a sarcophagus. Again. But such things are only petty annoyances compared to the real threat: evil curses on a lot of the museum’s artifacts. It is incredibly bothersome that Theodosia appears to be the only one sensitive enough to pick up on the curses: her parents keep stocking the museum with artifacts that need to be cleansed before they are truly safe.

Theodosia’s mother has just returned from an archaeological expedition to Egypt, and she has with her an incredible prize: the magnificent Heart of Egypt. Unfortunately, the Heart is also riddled with curses, the worst that Theodosia has ever seen. And then the Heart is stolen. It will take Theodosia, a street urchin named Sticky Will, and Theodosia’s reluctant younger brother Henry to track down the thieves, uncover a conspiracy, and neutralize the threat to the entire country. All without letting their parents know that anything out of the ordinary is happening.

This fantasy novel by R. L. LeFevers is filled with adventure and derring-do. The young protagonists are plucky and clever in the fine tradition of English dime novels. The plot is intriguing, and holds up fairly well (though the final chapters, set in Egypt, are a hair far-fetched in terms of realism – though we are discussing a fantasy novel after all.) Kids will enjoy Theodosia, her unlikely life, and her uncanny ability not just to find curses, but also to find her way out of trouble.

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