Hi Everyone! I am so excited to be taking part in the blog tour of Muse Squad: The Mystery of the Tenth by Chantel Acevedo, which is hosted by Paola!
While this will be a spoiler review of Muse Squad: The Mystery of the Tenth, this review may spoil events from Muse Squad: The Cassandra Curse, so please proceed with caution!
Muse Squad: The Mystery of the Tenth
Author: Chantel Acevedo
Publication Date: 06 July 2021
Genre: Middle Grade – Fantasy (Greek mythology)
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
The finale of an action-packed middle grade fantasy duology about a young Cuban American girl who discovers that she’s one of the nine muses of Greek mythology. Perfect for fans of The Serpent’s Secret, the Aru Shah series, and the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series.
Callie Martinez-Silva is finally getting the hang of this whole goddess within thing. Six months after learning she was one of the nine muses of ancient myth, she and the other junior muses are ready for new adventures. Except first Callie has to go to New York City for the summer to visit her dad, stepmom, and new baby brother.
Then the muses get startling news: an unprecedented tenth muse has been awakened somewhere in Queens, putting Callie in the perfect position to help find her. And she’ll have help—thanks to a runaway mold problem in London, Muse Headquarters is moving to the New York Hall of Science.
But balancing missions and family-mandated arts camp proves difficult for Callie, especially once mysterious messages from spiders (yikes!) begin to weave a tale of ancient injustice involving Callie’s campmate Ari.
Now Callie and her friends have to make a choice: follow orders and find the tenth muse or trust that sometimes fate has other plans.
It’s been six months since Callie and the Muse squad (aka the other three muses that are kids) defeated Ms. Rinse and the sirens that literally were trying to end their lives. Callie is officially a big sister and set to spend her summer in Queens with her Papi, her stepmom Laura, and her baby brother Rafelito. Callie finds out that the new headquarters for the muses is only a few blocks away at the New York Hall of Science. What Callie doesn’t expect is being forced to attend a summer school program for the arts. Now she must find a way to balance the new secret mission the muses have with the arts program that her family is forcing her to do.
This was such a fantastic follow up to Muse Squad: The Cassandra Curse. I already loved Callie and her girl gang of pre-teen muses, but what I enjoyed most about this book is Callie’s inner examination of what she is good at versus her ability to influence and create heroes that are meant to have their stories told. The other girls in the muse squad have their own interests such as gymnastics and science, but Callie is constantly questioning where she belongs and what she’s meant to do.
Okay, let’s to get the whole story line surrounding Ari. Let’s just say, I wasn’t ready for all of the spiders. As someone who is arachnophobic, those scenes were a bit much for my to take in. Anyways, I really enjoyed Ari as a character, but she serves as the antithesis to the muse squad. Where they are still figuring out this whole saving the world thing, Ari is confident, independent, and gifted with her abilities. I thoroughly enjoyed this retelling and thought it was such a creative spin especially for younger readers.
The pacing of the story was engaging from start to finish. There’s moments of intensity when the muse squad it trying to save the world, which is balanced out with Callie adjusting to having two families as well as what her future holds. Some of the best moments were the ones between her and her family.
Overall, this is such a fantastic series that breathes life into Greek mythology that not only offers young, BIPOC readers the opportunity to see themselves represented on page but also to get swept up in an epic quest!
Thank you Paola for the blog tour invite. Thank you to Balzer + Bray for providing a review copy. This did not influence my review. All opinions are my own.
Get your copy of Muse Squad: The Mystery of the Tenth below:
Called “a master storyteller” by Kirkus Reviews, Chantel Acevedo is the author of the novels Love and Ghost Letters, A Falling Star, The Distant Marvels, which was a finalist for the 2016 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction, and The Living Infinitehailed by Booklist as a “vivid and enthralling tale of love and redemption.” Muse Squad: The Cassandra Curse, Acevedo’s new middle grade duology (called “Riveting and suspenseful” by School Library Journal) was published by Balzer + Bray in 2020. The sequel, MUSE SQUAD: THE MYSTERY OF THE TENTH, will be published in July of 2021. She is Professor of English at the University of Miami, where she directs the MFA program.