Friday, August 17, 2018

What Exactly Does the Black Cloak Do?

Serafina is the Chief Rat Catcher at the Biltmore Estate, residence of the Vanderbilt family. Only no one knows that she and her father live there in the basement. Serafina doesn’t have any friends, but she is very close to her father. She's never been outside and has been warned to never, ever go in the woods. Serafina spends the nights prowling. She knows the estate well from years of hiding in the shadows and creeping around. But one night, while out catching rats, she hears crying. When Serafina investigates, she sees a man in a black cloak trying to catch a young girl. He keeps saying he won’t hurt her, but she's clearly terrified, and Serafina vows to help her escape. With a swish of his cloak, the girl disappears. Serafina manages to get away. The next day, during an encounter with Braeden Vanderbilt (the owner’s nephew who lives there), she learns that other children have recently gone missing. The adults are starting to worry and search parties begin to form. Together Braeden and Serafina embark on a wild journey to see if they can uncover who is wearing the black cloak and figure out what he's doing with the children. Will they be able to piece together the clues? What does the cloak do? What happens to the children enveloped in its folds? Why isn’t Serafina supposed to go in the woods? You’ll have to check out this chilling tale to find out!

I have had Serafina and the Black Cloak on my TBR list since I first read about it on another blog. It’s taken me a while to get to it, and I really did not know what to expect. I liked the fact that Serafina was braver than she thought. When she met Braeden they became fast friends, but it made sense based on the disappearing children and the fact that neither of them had any friends. The black cloak was crazy, and I was very curious about the person behind it. I wondered what it did and what happened to the people who were swept up in it. Thankfully all those questions were wrapped up in the end. Serafina’s father seemed to be a gentle soul and I was happy she had him in her life. After reading the book, I was curious and had to look up the real Biltmore Estate since so much of the book took place there. Wow! It's easy to see how, with a house that size, someone could live in the basement and never be discovered. This book is a nice mix of realistic fiction and fantasy for those who enjoy a little bit of spooky. I’d recommend it to anyone in fourth grade and up who likes slightly creepy reads. It looks like there are a few more books in the series, too!

Has anyone else read Serafina and the Black Cloak? Or another book by Robert Beatty? We’d love to hear your thoughts!

Happy Reading!
~L

30 comments:

  1. This sounds like a fantastic story! Thanks for sharing. Have a great weekend, hugs, Valerie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Valerie- It was definitely interesting! :) ~L

      Delete
  2. No and sadly I've never been to the Biltmore Estate, either. Been to Asheville plenty of times but since everyone says to take two days to view the house and gardens in full, we've just not had enough time to do so.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Alex- Wow! 2 days to view the house and gardens. No wonder it inspired the author to write a story about someone living there in secret! :) ~L

      Delete
  3. this sounds wonbderful and fun ! Have a nice weekend!! xo

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hi DMS - Robert Beatty is an interesting man .. and that puts a slightly different slant on his book - which I can imagine is fascinating. Sounds a really good read - thanks for the recommendation - cheers Hilary

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hilary- I don't know much about Robert Beatty. Now I am going to have to look him up. He definitely put a different slant on the book. Very creative! :) ~L

      Delete
  5. I haven't read it but it sounds fascinating. Missing people are always a good mystery to figure out.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I enjoyed Serafina and the Black Cloak, it was a nice blend of mystery and historical fiction. I've yet read either of the sequels.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Brenda- I thought it was a nice blend of fantasy, historical fiction and mystery, too. The genres blended very well. :) ~L

      Delete
  7. Yet more booky temptation. Thank you so much. I haven't read it (or anything by the author) but your review made me think of Joan Aiken. An author I loved, and reread from time to time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. EC- Now I am curious about Joan Aiken. Off to look them up. :) ~L

      Delete
  8. Does sound a good book.
    Many thanks

    All the best Jan

    ReplyDelete
  9. Sounds like a great mix indeed. Slightly creepy is fun.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Sounds like a good book.
    I've never been there, but I have been to one of the other Vanderbilt Mansions. (One of the bedrooms had everything in bright pink and gold. That's what I remember most, other than the sheer size of the place.)
    Thanks for sharing this review.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. J Lenni Dorner- I have seen the Vanderbilt Mansion in Rhode Island- but had no idea that anyone in the family had another mansion somewhere else- so I was very intrigued when I read this story. Can't even imagine needing a place that big! :) ~L

      Delete
  11. Oh my gosh. Biltmore is just a little over an hour from us. I guess I'll be checking the shadows next time I visit:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sandra Cox- You should definitely check the shadows. Who knows what may be lurking there. :) ~L

      Delete
  12. I've been to the Biltmore! Ah, to live like the Vanderbilts...

    Didn't realize the house was haunted. They have a lovely wine tasting room. Do the ghosts help tend to the bottles in the cellar?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Armchair Squid- How awesome that you have been to the Biltmore. I would love to visit now that I read this book. I am betting the ghosts definitely help with the wine cellar- they are spirits after all. :)

      Delete
  13. Oh goodness. Yes, it's a huge property. Gorgeous, too. This looks like a nice read :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anna- I imagine the fact that the property is so huge sparked the author's imagination and the wondering of "what if". :) ~L

      Delete
  14. Replies
    1. Magic Love Crow- You betcha! :) ~L

      Delete

Thank you for stopping by and commenting. We love to hear your thoughts! Fairday's Blog is no longer accepting awards. We appreciate all the nominations that we have received and are honored to have been mentioned! Happy Reading!

Twitter Bird Gadget Twitter Bird Gadget