Back in May I reviewed a charming YA novel about three young and incredibly intelligent students who use their genius to help their teacher find her mother. They called themselves the F.I.G.s (Females of Intellectual Genius) and they are back with a second novel! You can read my review of The Cadence of Gypsies here and below you will find everything you need to know about The Wish Rider, plus an interview with the author and an awesome giveaway at the end!
About the Book
Seventeen-year-old Dara Roux and her two best friends, Mackenzie Yarborough and Jennifer Torres, the three collectively referred to as the F.I.G.’s (Females of Intellectual Genius) because each has an intelligence quotient in the genius range, have just returned from Frascati, Italy. It was there that their much loved teacher and mentor, Carolina Lovel, discovered that her birth parents were gypsies, and that she had a connection to the Voynich Manuscript, the most mysterious document in the world.
Now, with graduation from Wood Rose Orphanage and Academy for Young Women behind them, Dara asks her friends to help her locate her birth mother when she learns that she might be living in New York City. Relying on Dara’s gift for speaking and understanding foreign languages, the black and white images that stir musical cadences in Jennifer’s mind, and Mackenzie’s mathematical calculations that normally provide numerical solutions and answers to life’s most difficult questions, the determined young women tirelessly go from one address to another in search of Dara’s mother.
Their determination turns to desperation, however, as they encounter a dark hidden society more dangerous and terrifying than they could have imagined. It is there that
Dara hopes to find out why she was abandoned in a candy store all those years ago.
Buy the book: Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble
About the Author
Barbara Casey is a partner in Strategic Media Books, and president of the Barbara Casey Agency, representing authors throughout the United States, Great Britain, Canada, and Japan. She is also a manuscript consultant and the author of numerous articles, poems, and short stories.
Her award-winning novels have received national recognition, including the Independent Publishers Book Award. Her novel, The House of Kane, was considered for a Pulitzer nomination, and The Gospel According to Prissy, also a contemporary adult novel received several awards including the prestigious IPPY Award for Best Regional Fiction. Her most recent young adult novel, The Cadence of Gypsies, received the Independent Publishers Living Now Award and was reviewed by the Smithsonian for its list of Best Books.
Ms. Casey makes her home on the top of a mountain in northwest Georgia with her husband and three dogs who adopted her: Benton, a hound-mix, Fitz, a miniature dachshund, and Gert, a Jack Russel terrier of sorts.
Connect with the author: Website
Interview with Barbara Casey
How did you do research for your book?
The Wish Rider, which is the second book in the F.I.G. Mysteries, continues to follow the lives of three orphaned teenagers, each girl from a different part of the country, and each girl a genius with a special talent. In The Cadence of Gypsies, Book 1, the FIGs, as they call themselves (Females of Intellectual Genius), helped Carolina, their teacher, also an orphan, discover the truth about her own gypsy background, and this plays a big part in the story. I continue with the gypsy theme in The Wish Rider, along with some other things that take them to New York City where Dara, one of the FIGs, believes her mother might be. Researching this wasn’t easy. For one thing, gypsies are by nature private and a closed society. I was able to find some old, out-of- print books, however, that had information on their practices, their herbal medications, and other things. I also interviewed people who knew or had worked with gypsies, and in one case a professor who teaches Romany history. And in New York City, I researched the Grand Central Terminal that also plays a big part in the story.
Which was the hardest character to write?
There is a young man named Grai, who at the request of Carolina’s boyfriend, drives the young women where they need to go while in New York, and tries to help them. He is also a gypsy who abandoned his tribe and heritage. He was difficult to write because there was so much secrecy surrounding him, yet he was an interesting character.
Carolina, who is more like a big sister than the FIGs’ teacher and mentor, was the easiest. She loves “her girls” so much, and the emotions she gets caught up in as they face terrifying danger are what I could feel and relate to being a mother.
In your book you make a reference to the Grand Central Terminal. How did you come up with this idea?
Grand Central Terminal is one of the most beautiful historical places in New York City. It also has its own secrets, such as a hidden underground and an old rail car. These are things I include in The Wish Rider.
Thank you, Lia, for interviewing me and for your interest in The Wish Rider. I wish you and your bloggers all the best.
Thank you, Barbara, for stopping by Discovering/Writing Life!
The Wish Rider by Barbara Casey
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The Wishrider is the second book following the exploits of the Females of Intellectual Genius (FIGs). These three orphans were brought together because of their high IQ and found an ally in their teacher, Carolina. In the first book, The Cadence of Gypsies, the three students and Carolina went in search of Carolina’s birth mother. In this book, one of the girls, Dara, is the one following a mysterious thread to find the woman who abandoned her years earlier.
I love these characters! In their unique ways they work together to put the pieces of their disjointed memories and to solve problems in a way no others could. Barbara Casey presents us with four female characters that are smart, witty, and lovable.
I have only read the first book a few months ago, so the characters were fresh in my mind, but Casey does an excellent job at introducing the world and the key figures, so this could definitely be a stand alone book.
If you are looking for a YA novel that features great female characters, this is an awesome book! It is a great clean read too!
I received a free copy of this book for an honest review from iRead Book Tours.
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Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book for an honest review from iRead Book Tours.