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Wild Beauty
Contributor(s): Mclemore, Anna-Marie
ISBN: 1250124557     ISBN-13: 9781250124555
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
    OUR PRICE: $16.19  
Product Type: Hardcover
Published: October 2017
Annotation: For nearly a century, the Nomeolvides women have tended the grounds of La Pradera, hiding a terrible legacy, until mysterious Fel arrives and Estrella helps him explore his dangerous past.
Additional Information
Library of Congress Subjects:
Gardens; Fiction.
Magic; Fiction.
Family life; Fiction.
Dewey: [Fic]
LCCN: 2016058771
Academic/Grade Level: Grade 7-9, Age 12-14
Book type: Juvenile Fiction
Physical Information: 8.50" H x 5.75" W x 1.50" (0.94 lbs) 339 pages
Scholastic Reading Counts Info
Quiz #: Q72083
Reading Level: 5.4   Interest Level: Grades 6-8   Point Value: 19.0
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.

Reviewed by Publishers Weekly Reviews (PW Reviews 2017 September #1)

Nomeolvides women have the power to conjure flowers. They're also cursed: whenever they fall in love, the object of their affection vanishes. The women strive for normalcy, channeling their magic into the elaborate gardens at La Pradera estate and forsaking suitors before they can disappear, but then Estrella Nomeolvides and her four cousins all fall for La Pradera's vivacious owner, Bay Briar. The girls perform a ritual that's intended to protect her, but it instead summons Fel, a strangely dressed boy who can't recall his past. Assuming that Fel is the resurrection of a prior generation's lost lover, the Nomeolvideses take him in; when his memories surface, they must face dark truths about their history and home. Featuring gay, bisexual, and genderqueer characters from multiple cultures, this vibrant, eloquently written fairy tale from McLemore (When the Moon Was Ours) illustrates the nondiscriminatory nature of love while thoughtfully exploring its risks and rewards. The pace is languid and some of the supporting characters lack depth, but McLemore's mythology is rich, and the heart-rending conclusion thrills and gratifies. Ages 12–up. Agent: Taylor Martindale Kean, Full Circle Literary. (Oct.)

Copyright 2017 Publisher Weekly.

Reviewed by School Library Journal Reviews (SLJ Reviews 2017 July)

Gr 7 Up—Set in an undisclosed time period, this new magical realism story featuring characters of color across the gender and sexuality spectrum draws on Latin American culture and language. Relying on lyrical prose, McLemore weaves an intricate tale of family, love, loss, and flowers. The Nomeolvides women have lived on and tended the enchanted gardens of La Pradera for generations. They are also hiding a dangerous secret: when those in their family fall in love too deeply, their lovers suddenly vanish. When Estrella and her four cousins (the youngest generation of Nomeolvides women) realize they are all in love with the same girl, they offer a desperate prayer to the gardens to save Bay Briar from nothingness. However, instead of protecting Bay from disappearing, they conjure up a strange and mysterious boy who knows nothing about his past or even his identity. As Estrella helps Fel discover the truth of his history, the Nomeolvides women learn more and more about their family's legendary curse and the terrifying power of La Pradera. While somewhat confusing at times, the leisurely plot flows smoothly and elegantly. The well-crafted characters add to the vibrant and magical tale that readers will not easily forget. VERDICT A solid, must-have addition to McLemore's growing body of work, this fantastical tale will delight her fans and entice a new audience.—Ariel Birdoff, New York Public Library

Copyright 2017 School Library Journal.