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Dark Eyes
ISBN: 9781595146007
Author: Richter, William
Publisher: Razorbill
Published: February 2013
Retail: $9.99    OUR PRICE: $1.99
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Binding Type: Paperback
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Annotation: Adopted from a Russian orphanage by a wealthy New York family then growing into a rebellious street youth, fifteen year-old Wally resolves to find the birth mother who stole a fortune from her murderous, dark-eyed father.
Additional Information
Target Grade: 7-9
Grade level: 7-9
Physical Information: 1.00" H x 100.00" L x 5.50" W
Bargain Category: Action & Adventure, Middle School
 
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.
Reviewed by Horn Book Guide Reviews (Horn Book Guide Reviews 2012 Fall)
Born in a Russian orphanage, raised in New York, and living on the streets, Wallis Stoneman has always felt most secure relying on herself. But when events send her on a collision course with a killer from her own forgotten past, Wally must rely on others to find her family--and stay alive. Multiple perspectives help move the story forward in this riveting rainy-day read.
Reviewed by Publishers Weekly Reviews (PW Reviews 2012 March #3)

A Russian mobster out for vengeance. A distraught adoptive mother who takes time from her high-flying real estate business to go to the morgue. A hardnosed cop admiring the street skills of a private-school kid gone rogue. These cameos are sketched with skill and conviction, but the protagonist of screenwriter Richter's first YA novel, 16-year-old Wallis Stoneman, is more of a puzzle. Independent and fierce, Wallis has willingly given up a sheltered life on the Upper West Side to join a tight crew of homeless youth who rummage for food and clothing on the streets of Harlem. Obsessed with the search for her birth mother, Yalena Mayakova, who she has never known, Wallis becomes involved with ruthless criminals who will lead her toward discovering her true origins, but will also destroy those she loves. Despite Richter's well-paced action sequences and the book's cinematic scope, Wallis is not an entirely convincing teenage heroine, strongly reminiscent of characters like La Femme Nikita and Lisbeth Salander, but lacking in authenticity and psychological depth. Noir homages may also be lost on the intended audience. Agent: Kari Stuart, ICM. Ages 12–up. (Mar.)

[Page ]. Copyright 2012 PWxyz LLC
Reviewed by PW Annex Reviews (Publishers Weekly Annex Reviews)

A Russian mobster out for vengeance. A distraught adoptive mother who takes time from her high-flying real estate business to go to the morgue. A hardnosed cop admiring the street skills of a private-school kid gone rogue. These cameos are sketched with skill and conviction, but the protagonist of screenwriter Richter's first YA novel, 16-year-old Wallis Stoneman, is more of a puzzle. Independent and fierce, Wallis has willingly given up a sheltered life on the Upper West Side to join a tight crew of homeless youth who rummage for food and clothing on the streets of Harlem. Obsessed with the search for her birth mother, Yalena Mayakova, who she has never known, Wallis becomes involved with ruthless criminals who will lead her toward discovering her true origins, but will also destroy those she loves. Despite Richter's well-paced action sequences and the book's cinematic scope, Wallis is not an entirely convincing teenage heroine, strongly reminiscent of characters like La Femme Nikita and Lisbeth Salander, but lacking in authenticity and psychological depth. Noir homages may also be lost on the intended audience. Agent: Kari Stuart, ICM. Ages 12–up. (Mar.)

[Page ]. Copyright 2012 PWxyz LLC
Reviewed by School Library Journal Reviews (SLJ Reviews 2012 May)

Gr 7–10—Wallis Stoneman seemed to have everything. Rescued from an orphanage in Russia by wealthy Americans, she was whisked off to live in glamorous Manhattan. But by the age of 16, she has opted to live on the streets with other runaways, attempting to shun her former life. An encounter with a Brighton Beach shopkeeper from whom she is trying to obtain a fake ID opens an unimaginable door to her past: he hands her an envelope with documents, a gemstone, and a letter from her birth mother. The path Wally takes to find out about her early life and to reunite with the woman who gave her away 11 years earlier is dangerous without her knowing it, because a criminal is also on her mother's trail. The teen is trained in martial arts and the use of handguns, equipping her to go toe-to-toe with a man so evil that he was sentenced to life in prison. He is also her father. This debut novel glamorizes life on the streets and stereotypes street kids. It has an "and then this happened, and then that happened" feel, and, as each event unfolds, it is more and more difficult for readers to suspend disbelief.—Melyssa Kenney, Parkville High School, Baltimore, MD

[Page 117]. (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.