Sixteen-year-old streetwise orphan, Jax Stone is an expert at surviving in a dangerous city, where rats rival the homeless for food and shelter, but she’s an amateur at fighting the immoral mayor when he kidnaps her little brother. Desperation demands she quickly master the role of courageous opponent. She uses her hypnotic singing voice to lead rats to their death, and all the children to safety, in a dying city cursed by the deadly sun.
Think the Pied Piper with this one.
I really haven’t thought about or looked at the Pied Piper story in years, but I found myself suddenly enchanted all over again with this retelling of the book. I loved Jax’s personality and all the multiple layers to all of Kraus’s characters. Jax plays a great role as a heroine and her sarcastic, rebellious, ultimately lovable personality really grew on me over the course of this book. There is next to no romance in this book and I have to say it was a refreshing break. I really liked the relationship between Jax and Rafe through RATGIRL and I hated Culpepper, who I thought was an amazing villain.
This dystopian world was extremely fun to explore and is, surprisingly, suitable for middle-grade and young-adult readers. I think both audiences can really draw a lot from RATGIRL and will have a lot of fun in the process. The environmental, action, adventure and the world-building to this book were all themes that I thoroughly enjoyed as well. This is great read, and even though it took me a while to get used to the writing and what was going on, I would highly recommend it to anyone in for a good, fresh new dystopian ride. 3.5 stars.
pg count for the kindle edition: 210
Also, be sure to check out this amazing giveaway courtesy of the author! You can enter this international giveaway for an Kindle here!
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Gayle C. Krause is a member of SCBWI, YALITCHAT and The Cliffhouse YA Wonderwriters.She writes across the genres. Her first publication credit was a short story in Chicken Soup for the Kid’s Soul 2 (2006). The Storyteller’s Daughter, her YA historical short story, was featured in Timeless, A YA Historical Romance anthology from Pugalicious Press (2012).Her new YA novel, RATGIRL: Song of the Viper was published in February 2013 (Noble Young Adult).
During the course of her writing career Ms. Krause has served as assistant editor for Underneath the Juniper Tree, a dark fantasy online magazine developed for young teens, a children’s book reviewer for Children’s Literature .com and she offers a critique service for children’s writers at First Peek Critique. (www.gayleckrause.com)
She also runs a blog that encourages new children’s writers through contests, book reviews and author interviews. http://thestorytellersscroll.blogspot.com.