The Lost Books: The Scroll of Kings

The Lost Books: The Scroll of Kings

by Sarah Prineas


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“A page-turner of a fantasy with elements of humor as well as intrigue, swordplay, and librarian-versus-hostile-book combat.” Booklist

“A fast-paced, engaging adventure.” —Publishers Weekly

“One for the books.” —Kirkus Reviews

From Sarah Prineas, author of the acclaimed Magic Thief series, comes a stunning new tween fantasy where books literally come to life!

The powerful Lost Books at the palace library are infecting the rest with an evil magic, and two unlikely friends must figure out who, or what, is controlling the books and their power. If they can’t, the entire kingdom could be at risk.

Sarah Prineas returns to her classic middle grade roots with this imaginative, fast-paced adventure for book lovers everywhere.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

In this lively middle grade fantasy, the start to a new series, an apprentice librarian discovers the true hazards of his chosen profession when he steals his deceased master’s identity and takes up the position of royal librarian, despite his lacking age, experience, and proper qualifications. Even so, 15-year-old Alex is determined to prove his abilities, and to discover just why the libraries are kept under lock and key and his fellow librarians are all elderly, secretive, and dying mysteriously. When he learns that certain books are actually alive, malicious, and fatal to the unwary reader, he enlists the aid of his new queen, Kenneret, and her headstrong, dyslexic brother, Charleren, to stop this plague of murderous manuscripts before the kingdom falls to an unexpected threat. Alex and his new allies experience a delightful level of conflict and chemistry in a setting ripe for future exploration. Prineas (The Magic Thief) delivers a fast-paced, engaging adventure in which libraries are as deadly as any dungeon and knowledge can literally kill. Ages 8–12. Agent: Caitlin Blasdell, Liza Dawson Associates. (June)


A page-turner of a fantasy with elements of humor as well as intrigue, swordplay, and librarian-versus-hostile-book combat.


A page-turner of a fantasy with elements of humor as well as intrigue, swordplay, and librarian-versus-hostile-book combat.

School Library Journal

Gr 5–8—Alex has been chosen to be a librarian, a caretaker of books. The problem? He's not even 16 and no one will take him seriously. Oh, and the books are afraid while someone—or something—is killing the librarians. Alex has to prove he's capable of saving himself and the information before it's too late. Castles, kingdoms, sword fights, magical pages, and mysterious deaths all are present and accounted for. Alex is snarky and not particularly likable. Queen Kenneret struggles to rule her kingdom and is seemingly oblivious to obvious things. The mystery is intriguing and some of the fantasy elements are engaging, but middle grade readers may find the heavy-handed praise of libraries, reading, and librarians to be a bit too on-the-nose. VERDICT For libraries that have a strong fantasy readership, this title may appeal, despite its flaws.—Maureen Sullivan, Calumet City Public Library, IL

Kirkus Reviews

A young librarian discovers that books are living things that must be read and, sometimes, stabbed.Teenage runaway Alexandren not only finds that the realm's long-locked-up royal library where he lands a temporary gig has gone "feral and moldy and restless," but that he too has become a target for certain specially marked and weaponized volumes. Fortunately, thanks to the martial upbringing he has fled, he turns out to be a dab hand with a blade. And, as Alex feels his way toward an understanding of his duties as a librarian, he finds unexpected allies in 16-year-old Queen Kenneret, newly crowned and also struggling to define her role and responsibilities, and Kenneret's dyslexic but extremely bright younger brother, Charleren. Amid alarums and excursions Alex learns that all books and their contents can be commanded by certain Lost Books…particularly a Scroll of Kings that, it turns out, Kenneret's scheming uncle is searching for as a means of usurping the throne. Along with slipping in many library jokes, Prineas makes sparks fly as Alex and Kenneret, both of whom are intense, prickly sorts, explore common ground and conflicting agendas. By the end, though the immediate crises have been resolved, there's still plenty of unfinished business for future episodes to tackle. Alex is pale, and Kenneret has olive skin—in this world, the nobility is dark-skinned.One for the books—and for all who, like Alex, cherish them. (Fantasy. 11-13)

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062665584
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 06/26/2018
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 555,778
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range: 8 - 12 Years

Customer Reviews