Graphix, 2011. 978-0545208871
Synopsis: Emily and her friends think they will find the answers they seek in the lost city of Cielis, but something isn’t right. Emily is separated from her family and taken to the Academy, where she is told she will compete for a spot on the Council of Guardians. Meanwhile, while her friends roam the streets they notice that the city seems to be abandoned. Is Cielis a ghost town or a trap?
Why I picked it up: I am completely, totally, and utterly addicted to this series.
Why I finished it: The mystery deepens further in this volume as we are introduced to more new characters that will aid or hinder Emily in her quest. This volume also as a Hunger Games element to it: young stonekeepers compete for a place on the council through war game-like trials that test their strength both mentally and physically. As if the reader wasn’t aware by now, there are more pieces of the puzzle surrounding the disappearance of the city and the seclusion of the Guardian Council, some of which are being fit together, but there is still a lot of storytelling to go before we can see the bigger picture. This volume is also darker in terms of the color palate Kibuishi uses for the city of Cielis; the exterior of the city is colored with soft browns an beiges contrasting with the city catacombs are deep blues and greens that heighten the tensions between Emily and the other Academy members. The drawing is very lyrical and everything flows as we move from the city streets down into the underground chambers and lends itself well to helping the reader understand the story. I’m anxious to see what comes next.
Other related materials: Amulet, Book 1: The Stonekeeper by Kazu Kibuishi; Amulet, Book 2: The Stonekeeper’s Curse by Kazu Kibuishi; Amulet, Book 3: The Cloud Searchers by Kazu Kibuishi; Amulet, Book 5: Prince of the Elves by Kazu Kibuishi; Explorer: The Mystery Boxes by Kazu Kibuishi; Flight Explorer, Volume One edited by Kazu Kibuishi; Babymouse graphic novels by Jennifer L. Holm & Matt Holm; Squish books by Jennifer L. Holm & Matt Holm; Bone graphic novels by Jeff Smith; Missile Mouse books by Jake Parker; The Secret Science Alliance books by Eleanor Davis; Dragonbreath books by Ursula Vernon; Big Nate books by Lincoln Pierce; Avatar: The Last Airbender – The Search, Part 1 by Gene Luen Yang; Chickenhare by Chris Grine