The Resource The cabinet of wonders, Marie Rutkoski

The cabinet of wonders, Marie Rutkoski

Label
The cabinet of wonders
Title
The cabinet of wonders
Statement of responsibility
Marie Rutkoski
Creator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
Twelve-year-old Petra, accompanied by her magical tin spider, goes to Prague hoping to retrieve the enchanted eyes the Prince of Bohemia took from her father, and is aided in her quest by a Roma boy and his sister
Member of
Storyline
Pace
Review
  • Gr. 5-8 Petra's father, Mikal Kronos, is an inventor who telepathically shapes metal into amazing inventions, including Astrophil, Petra's talking tin spider. Mikal is honored when the prince of Bohemia commissions him to build a clock that will stun the world with its beauty; but when he is finished, the prince has his eyes removed. Quick-witted, impulsive Petra is not the kind of girl to do nothing, so she sneaks away to Prague and infiltrates the castle to retrieve her father's eyes. She joins forces with two young Roma (gypsies), but her mission is complicated when she learns the prince has been wearing her father's eyes. Furthermore, the clock is more than it seems, and Petra must also stop its hidden power from being abused. Loosely inspired by facts and legends of historical Bohemia, Rutkoski's fantasy features quirky characters, imaginative world building, and a hint of trouble to come that will create demand for the next book in the planned Kronos Chronicles series. -- Hutley, Krista (Reviewed 07-01-2008) (Booklist, vol 104, number 21, p61)
  • Gr 5–8— Set in an altered European Renaissance, this book succeeds in creating an interesting new fantasy world. Twelve-year-old Petra Kronos is shocked when her father is returned to their village without his eyes. The young Prince of Bohemia had commissioned Mikhail Kronos, who has a magical gift with metal and machines, to create a magnificent clock. Before its completion, however, the prince had the artisan's eyes removed, hoping to use their magical qualities, along with the clock, to gain control of the Hapsburg Empire and possibly the world. Petra, along with her well-read tin spider, Astrophil, sneaks off to Prague in order to get the eyes back. With help from a Roma boy, Neel, and his sister, Petra gets a job at the castle and is one step closer to retrieving her father's eyes and preventing the prince from misusing the clock's power. Her adventures also lead her to discover more of her own abilities, magical and otherwise. The novel is well paced and contains a number of intriguing characters. This is a solid fantasy that finishes its story but leaves the door open for further episodes. An author's note explains the historical basis for certain aspects of the book, including the Roma, the prince's cabinet of wonders, and John Dee, advisor to Queen Elizabeth. For those who like their fantasy with a splash of history, or their history with a twist of magic, this book is ideal.—Amanda Raklovits, Champaign Public Library, IL --Amanda Raklovits (Reviewed October 1, 2008) (School Library Journal, vol 54, issue 10, p158)
  • /* Starred Review */ Add this heady mix of history and enchantment to the season's list of astonishingly accomplished first novels: in Rutkowski's multilayered version of late–16th-century Bohemia, magicians coexist with peasants and courtiers, a tribe of gypsies use specially endowed “ghost” fingers, and the fate of Europe hangs on the schemes of an evil prince. As the novel opens, a metalworker with extraordinary gifts has returned from Prince Rodolfo's palace in Prague, having finished his commission to build a magical clock—but the prince has gouged out his eyes, so that he can never duplicate the clock or, worse, better it. Even more disturbingly, the prince wears the eyes himself. Vowing to recover her father's eyes, 12-year-old Petra sneaks off to Prague, with little more than the company of Astrophil, an erudite tin spider who can communicate with her. Proving herself a worthy relative of, say, Philip Pullman's quick-thinking, fearless heroines, Petra navigates her way past sorceress countesses, English spy magicians, dangerous gypsies and through bewitched palace halls until Rodolfo, wearing the ill-gotten eyes, catches sight of her. Infusions of folklore (and Rutkowski's embellishments of them) don't slow the fast plot but more deeply entrance readers. Ages 10–up. (Aug.) --Staff (Reviewed August 18, 2008) (Publishers Weekly, vol 255, issue 33, p63)
  • A refreshingly different fantasy premise falls to pedestrian plotting. Twelve-year-old Petra admires her father's magical talent for mechanical invention, but when he is blinded after crafting a clock for the Prince of Bohemia, she is as outraged by his resigned acceptance as by his mutilation. She runs off to Prague to steal back her father's eyes, now bespelled for the Prince to wear. Assisted by the erudite tin spider Astrophil and the Gypsy boy Neel, Petra braves both the wonders and injustices of palace life to learn that the marvelous clock threatens the stability of all Europe. The fantastical alternative-Renaissance setting provides imaginative charm, and intrepid Petra is a resourceful, if self-centered, heroine. Alas, her quest plods along without suspense, relying on random encounters and convenient revelations. Despite occasional intriguing glimpses of magic in action, there is no sense of a coherent system. The tone veers irritatingly from fairy-tale adventure to unpleasant grimness to arch narrative asides, and erratic shifts in point of view add to the confusion. Disappointing. (Fantasy. 10-14) (Kirkus Reviews, July 15, 2008)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
275176
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Rutkoski, Marie
Index
no index present
Intended audience
720L
Intended audience source
Lexile
Interest level
MG
Literary form
fiction
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/minGradeLevel
  • 5
  • 8
Reading level
4.9
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
Series statement
The Kronos Chronicles
Series volume
1
Study program name
Accelerated Reader
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Magic
  • Princes
  • Romanies
  • Quests (Expeditions)
  • Interpersonal relations
Target audience
adolescent
Label
The cabinet of wonders, Marie Rutkoski
Instantiates
Publication
Copyright
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
22 cm.
Edition
First edition.
Extent
258 pages
Isbn
9780374310264
Lccn
2007037702
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Label
The cabinet of wonders, Marie Rutkoski
Publication
Copyright
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
22 cm.
Edition
First edition.
Extent
258 pages
Isbn
9780374310264
Lccn
2007037702
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n

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