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Jane Yolen
Teen Fiction YOLEN

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Aliera, a nationals-bound fencing champion, ignores her instructor's warning to "protect her heart" when she falls for Avery Castle, the handsomest boy in school. On their first and only date, she dons her fencing mask, and Grand Central Station comes to magical life before her eyes. Only then does Aliera learn that Avery is not at all what he seems and that the real object of his affection is the practice foil her mother picked up at a tag sale. Why It Is for Us: Yolen's fantastical tale makes great use of the graphic format. Aliera's monotone world springs to vibrant life in the story's last half. On learning that she is a Defender of this strange new universe, Aliera's reaction is half befuddlement and half "bring it on"-an excellent reminder that girls just want to have fun...with swords.-Angelina Benedetti, "35 Going on 13," BookSmack! 7/15/2010 (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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main characters Aliera Carstairs
Plays fencing and the role-playing games with her cousin; develops a crush.

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