Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Mortal Fire

Mortal Fire

Elizabeth Knox

Square Fish



Trade Paperback
Sixteen-year-old Canny Mochrie's parents go away on a vacation, so they send her off on a trip of her own with her stepbrother, Sholto, and his opinionated girlfriend, Susan, who are interviewing the survivors of a strange coal mine disaster and researching local folklore in 1959 Southland, New Zealand. Canny is left to herself to wander in a mysterious and enchanting nearby valley, occupied almost entirely by children who all have the last name, Zarene, and can perform a special type of magic that tells things how to be stronger and better than they already are. With the help of a seventeen-year-old boy who is held hostage in a hidden house by a spell that is now more powerful than the people who first placed it, Canny figures out why she, too, can use this special magic that only Zarenes should know, and where she really came from. Printz Honor author Elizabeth Knox has created another stunning world of intrigue in Mortal Fire.

The Guardian (UK) Best Books of the Year, Bank Street Best Children's Book of the Year, CCBC Choice (Univ. of WI), L.A. Times Book Prize - Finalist



CANNY AND HER TEAMMATES stood on platform nine of Castlereagh Station and watched everything they'd seen the night before in Founderston play again in reverse. Passengers from the overnight express were met,...


Praise for Mortal Fire

“I love this book with all of my heart, which is not that surprising, since Elizabeth Knox wrote it. I love all of her books. Mortal Fire and its heroine, Canny, are that rare thing: real magic.” —Kelly Link, author of Pretty Monsters

“Knox fans (and we are legion) who've been longing for another visit to the Southland of the Dreamhunter Duet should fall upon Mortal Fire with cries of glee. This book is finely wrought magic from start to finish. It has brains; it has heart; it has people to fear and to fall in love with, and it all takes place in a totally beguiling world full of natural beauties, glittering puzzles, and earthy problems. It's a rich and satisfying read.” —Margo Lanagan, Printz Honor Award–winning author of Tender Morsels

“A remarkable book.” —Holly Black, New York Times–bestselling author of Tithe

“Knox returns to the world she so vividly created in the Dreamhunter Duet for this standalone novel. . . . The prose is lush and descriptive, the characters are drawn with finesse, the plot is a series of riddles nested within one another like Russian dolls.” —The Horn Book

“Intense, complex.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Intricately plotted, highly literate prose, along with alternating points of view, illuminates the fantastical heart of the story. . . . This is one of those books that, when finished, prompts the reader to go back and reread it in hopes of catching all the clues along the way.” —Booklist

“It is like nothing else I've ever read. The characters are so real, you'll feel like you know exactly what they look like and how their voices sound and what they would say or do in any given situation. More than that, you'll want to hang out with them. Then the world is so amazing and unique. You will want to go there. You will want to walk into ‘the Place.' And you will want to sleep in a dream opera.” —Stephenie Meyer, The Twilight Saga on Dreamhunter

“Fascinating . . . Will surely lure readers back for multiple readings.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review on Dreamhunter

“A lyrical, intricate and ferociously intelligent fantasy . . . Satisfies fully while pointing to the promised sequel. Provocative and compelling.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review on Dreamhunter

“Readers pining for a fantasist to rival Philip Pullman or Garth Nix may have finally found what they seek in New Zealander Knox.” —Booklist, starred review on Dreamhunter

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Elizabeth Knox

Elizabeth Knox is the author of the Dreamhunter Duet, which Stephanie Meyer called "like nothing else I've ever read." Dreamquake was a Printz Honor novel. Elizabeth lives in Wellington, New Zealand.

Elizabeth Knox

From the Publisher

Square Fish

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