Where the Drowned Girls Go

Macmillan Audio. (Wayward Children, Bk. 7). Jan. 2022. 4:31 hrs. ISBN 9781250841247. $10.99. FANTASY
McGuire’s latest installment in her “Wayward Children” series (after Across the Green Grass Fields) focuses on Cora Miller, recently returned to Eleanor West’s Home for Wayward Children. Cora is a girl in this world, but in her watery portal world, she is a mermaid. Since returning to the school after narrowly escaping the menacing world of the Moors, she has been pursued by the Drowned Gods, who infiltrate her dreams and try to take her back. Desperately hoping to eliminate their hold upon her, Cora transfers to the Whitethorn Institute, an anti-magical school that promises to make her forget magical worlds and become a normal girl once again. With clear, age-appropriate character voices, Whitney Johnson depicts the diversity and breadth of the students at the institute, from upbeat Sumi to the miserably frightened Girl with No Name. She communicates the dread that all of the girls feel in the repressive school, where punishments are severe and individuality is stamped out. Listeners will be buoyed by Cora’s growing confidence as she begins to realize her own power and agency, abandoning her fear and taking on the mantle of protector.
VERDICT Strong crossover appeal. Recommended for both fans and new listeners, particularly where interest in fantasy is high.
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