The pandemic, like an evil mage, has transmuted many things in unexpected ways, even handselling. Booksellers, as protagonists in the tough part of the story, yearn to overcome its deleterious effects. In the case of handselling, given limited scope and opportunity, one longs for an unimpeachably great title to commend, which not only will bring joy but also both relevance and escape at the same time. A rarity to be sure, but it is just such a book that we turn our attention to today.
As a narrative, Amari and the Night Brothers mirrors its content. Drawing in readers via deeply satisfying and familiar elements and then shifting their character in a beguiling and revealing manner is just the sort of spell one of the book’s characters might have cast. The spell, intertwining the timeless and the timely, mixing familiar ingredients in a novel way, reveals the power of addressing the moment through story rather than allegory. Though the security of allegory is alluring, Amari chooses the harder path of working her way to understanding through immersion. To find out more about the congenial spell cast by this new middle-grade fantasy I caught up with its gracious caster, B.B. Alston.Continue reading