Reviews for Darkness Dwellers
Booklist Reviews 2012 December #2
Kiki Strike, aka Katarina, Princess of Pokrovia, is headed back to Pokrovia to give up her crown since the country can now be deemed a democracy. But her spoiled cousin and evil aunt have other plans. In a second, equally strong plot, Betty Bent is accompanying the elderly, straitlaced head of L'Institut Beauregard to Paris to uncover the remains of her former lover. It's another subterranean adventure for the Irregulars, once again narrated by Ananka Fishbein, who this time is struggling with the mantle of leader while Kiki is overseas. Crushes, tragic love lost, and real danger make for a strong third entry in the Kiki Strike series. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.
Horn Book Guide Reviews 2013 Fall
The titular Kiki, well-read sidekick Ananka, and the rest of the aggressively quirky, criminally gifted team of adolescent girls set their sights on Kiki's parents' killers, which takes them from New York to Paris and the underground conspiracies therein. The third caper has girl-power panache, but the characters are cloyingly twee and broadly written. Ananka's snarky chapter-ending etiquette guides remain a highlight.
Kirkus Reviews 2012 December #1
Kiki Strike and the Irregulars are finally back, in their third (and seemingly final) adventure. This time, the adventure involves an evil twin, a World War II mystery, Upper East Side zombies (of the well-mannered sort), the catacombs of Paris and a possible resolution to Kiki's lifetime fight to prove that her evil aunt killed her parents. Plus some romance, both successful and hopeless. Whew! It's a good thing Ananka Fishbein is there to lead the Irregulars in New York while Kiki and Betty take Paris by storm, even if Betty's perfect boyfriend proves distracting for Ananka. Like the previous entries in the series, this girl-power mystery/adventure is tongue-in-cheek but full of heart. Miller's motley crew of heroines can take on anything, and by the tale's end, it looks like their breed of awesome is poised to take over all of New York City. Thematically, this volume is all about being true to oneself and recognizing that genius comes in many forms. Happily, this "lesson" comes wrapped in sheer delight. Here's hoping that this latest volume attracts droves of new devotees for some of the coolest girls in fiction. (Adventure. 12-16) Copyright Kirkus 2012 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
School Library Journal Reviews 2013 February
Gr 5-8--In this latest installation in the series, the Irregulars, a secret group of girl geniuses, are older and a little wiser. While Ananka Fishbein does the majority of the narration, Kiki Strike (aka Princess Katarina of Pokrovia) and Betty Bent also play major roles. Kiki jets off to Paris, where she is kidnapped by her evil Aunt and cousin. Meanwhile, Betty, armed with a special invention designed to secure Kiki's release, ventures to the City of Lights alongside the headmistress of an exclusive school that turns naughty girls into proper ladies. There, both Betty and Kiki become involved with an underground organization called the Darkness Dwellers, who live beneath the streets of Paris. Meanwhile, back in New York, the other Irregulars are busy cracking secret codes and tracking down the errant sister of Oona Wong. One need not have read the previous books to immediately be drawn into this fun and exciting story. A fast-moving plot and wonderful dialogue keep readers smiling while turning the pages. Chapter endings sometimes offer words of wisdom from Ananka's guidebook on essential skills (e.g., a lady "Knows how to defend herself-in an argument, a sporting match, or a dark alley."). A must-have for libraries that own the first two titles.--Melissa Stock, Arapahoe Library District, Englewood, CO [Page 109]. (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
VOYA Reviews 2012 December
In volume three of this adventure mystery series, Kiki is off to the small nation of Pokrovia to decline the throne and dismantle the monarchy once and for all. Ananka is left in charge of the Irregulars, a band of badass teen girls, back in New York City. Kiki is kidnapped and held captive in Paris, and Irregular Betty must head to Paris to rescue her. Once in Paris, Betty becomes embroiled in her own mystery involving jilted royalty, an accused World War II traitor, a humorless headmistress, and a secret community, The Darkness Dwellers, who patrol the Parisian catacombs. While Ananka helps another Irregular, Oona, solve the problem of her evil twin wreaking havoc in Chinatown, the intercontinental mysteries twist and turn and eventually entwine until the truth is revealed and order is restored, thanks once again to the Irregulars. What is interesting about the Kiki Strike series is that Miller's Irregulars are not static types, nor does Miller reduce the Irregulars' victories to distractions from "normal girl" activities. The Irregulars are smart, tough, and skilled, their exploits of worldwide significance. In turn, the familiar conflicts of young adult "girl books" are not present in this series, or if they are, they are made to seem petty and inconsequential compared to the real battles the girls must fight. That the girls like doing battle and solving mysteries, and that they are depicted as being dedicated to strengthening their individual talents in order to strengthen the group, makes this mystery series unusually smart and original.--Jennifer M. Miskec 4Q 4P M J S Copyright 2011 Voya Reviews.