Beatty, Robert. Serafina and the Black Cloak. (Serafina series, #1) Disney-Hyperion, 2015. $5.99. ISBN 978-1-4847-0901-6. 293 pages. Ages 8-12. P9Q7
Serafina is an unusual girl who lives top-secretly and inconspicuously in the basement of the grand Biltmore Estate. She has strange amber eyes, a mane of streaked, lion-like hair, and other peculiar characteristics. Her pa has warned her to keep herself hidden from the fancy folk above. Thus, she prowls through the darkened corridors at night sneaking through the hidden doors and secret passageways of the vast house. But one night, she sees a sinister stranger in a black cloak capture a little girl. When other children at the estate start disappearing, Serafina faces a difficult decision. Should she step out into the light to save these children? Should she risk everything by approaching the young Vanderbilt boy? To defeat her black-cloaked enemy, Serafina must not only confront her darkest fears, she must dig into the mysteries of who she is and where she came from.
Summer 2016 review by Penny McDermott.