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TBR Spotlight: The Forest of Stars by Heather Kassner

Whenever I make a set day for a weekly post, they always seem to come around so fast! It’s Monday again and the random number generator has picked book #377 from the TBR, The Forest of Stars by Heather Kassner.

Left all alone after her mother passes away, twelve-year-old Louisa watches the sky for her father. Long ago, a powerful gust of wind stole him away on the wings of his untamed magic – the same magic that stirs within Louisa. As if she is made of hollow bones and too much air, her feet never quite touch the ground.

But for all her sky gazing, Louisa finds her fortune on the ground when she spots a ticket to the Carnival Beneath the Stars. If her father fits in nowhere else, maybe she’ll find him dazzling crowds alongside the other strange feats. Yet after she arrives, a tightrope act ends disastrously – and suspiciously. As fate tugs Louisa closer to the stars, she must decide if she’s willing to slip into the injured performer’s role, despite the darkness plucking at the carnival’s magical threads.

I was a big fan of Heather Kassner’s previous book, The Bone Garden, which I reviewed here, so when this ARC popped up on NetGalley I snapped it up. I loved her command of atmosphere, and how the book sat between middle grade and YA, providing creepy-but-not-scary darkness that will really suit a young teen reader. So I’m excited to see if that balance is also present in The Forest of Stars – a slightly sinister circus setting certainly seems like it’s perfect for Kassner’s impressive atmosphere-building skills. I think this is going to be a very enjoyable read, but it’s one I might save for a gloomy day – it doesn’t feel quite right for sunshine!

Have you read this, or is it on your TBR? I’d love to know your thoughts!