Jane Doe and the Key of All Souls
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"Lachlan's fantasy sequel to Jane Doe and the Cradle of All Worlds is packed with high-octane action and adventure sprinkled with a tender spark of LGBTQ romance. This is a tale of friendship, grief, trauma, revenge, genocidal conquest, and how unchecked power can lead to corruption. The text contains many similarities to 'Harry Potter' and Joe Hill's 'Locke and Key.' Jane, 14, fights immortal villain Roth, saves her dad John with the help of her trusted friends Violet and Hickory, and heals the crumbling world between worlds known as the Manor. Jane discovers she is the third key needed to destroy Roth. The ragtag trio receive help along the way as they battle strange fearsome creatures that push them to their limits. Discussion questions similar to those offered in the first book would have been beneficial. While the text's constant action keeps readers on the edge of their seats, there seems to be a lack of depth among the characters. The attraction between Violet and Jane is barely mentioned until the very end, and readers never really get closure about Elsa's connection to Jane. VERDICT A fast-paced fantasy tale of friendship, trauma, and survival with a hint of LGBTQ romance."--School Library Journal-- (5/1/2021 12:00:00 AM)
"Jane Doe will either save or destroy all the worlds, bantering all the while.
Jane, who is either 14 or a 'gazillion-odd years' old, depending on how you count, has escaped from the labyrinthine Manor into the harsh desert Otherworld where she'd once hoped to meet her mother. But as Jane's adventures unfold, it's become clear that she's not a real person with parents. Instead, she's the third key, a secret weapon made by the gods themselves--and the woman she'd thought to be her mother is furiously resentful that Jane has taken the place of her own dead child. In this blazingly hot Otherworld, everything is hostile: the climate, the fauna, and even her allies. The only people she believes she can trust are her crush, Violet; former bad guy Hickory; and the Leatherhead monster she's befriended. But even her friends have their own agendas. Jane wants to destroy the evil villain and save the Manor, but can she rely on her sidekicks? A lengthy, climactic action sequence hits every beat. Double-crosses! Triple-crosses! A daring flight in a location definitely not intended for an airplane! A massive rolling boulder! Sandstorms and scorpions! Amid all the death and betrayal, Jane's timid, sweet flirtation with Violet comes off as positively darling. Jane is olive-skinned and the populations of the Otherworlds have a variety of skin colors.
An explosive, fast-paced, snarky, high-stakes quest through an ancient haunted house."--Kirkus Reviews