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fantastic middle grade series
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RISE OF THE JUMBIES is a fantastic continuation of Corinne's story. Combining Caribbean folklore with lots of adventure, this book has broad appeal for the middle grade audience. While the first one definitely had some horror elements, this one felt more like a fantasy with minor scary parts.

As children disappear around water, Corinne decides to help by confronting the water jumbie, Mama D'Leau, who she assumes has been taking them. Mama D'Leau does not give information for free, and to learn where the children are, Corinne must first travel across the ocean with her friends and Mama D'Leau's mermaids to Ghana where she will get the stone Mama D'Leau wants in exchange for the information.

Fraught with danger and loads of adventure, this is an even better continuation of an imaginative and unique series. Corinne and her friends endear themselves to the readers' hearts and watching their journey, bravery, and stealthiness is a pleasure. While there are some scary elements, this felt less like a horror than the first, though the kidnapping, discussions of slavery, and danger from jumbies is all very real.

The book moves quickly with a fast pace that will appeal to a younger audience, and there is also some great humor in the book (such as when Corinne works with the snakes). Another theme of the book is about the families we create and their importance (such as with the boys being adopted and Mama D'Leau's mermaids). The creatures that exist within these pages are fascinating and come to life just as much as the main four friends do, giving them all a three-dimensional feel.

Overall, this is a really wonderful middle grade series that I would certainly recommend to fantasy readers!
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