The Wrinkled Crown

Posted on Jun 4, 2016 in BR Library

9780062104298By Anne Nesbet
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Pages: 400
Lexile: 910L
Age Range: 8 – 12 Years

Fans of Anne Ursu will love Anne Nesbet’s tale of music and friendship, set against an age-old war between magic and science.

In the enchanted village of Lourka, almost-twelve-year-old Linny breaks an ancient law. Girls are forbidden to so much as touch the town’s namesake musical instrument before their twelfth birthday or risk being spirited away. But Linny can’t resist the call to play a lourka, so she builds one herself.

When the punishment strikes her best friend instead, Linny must leave home to try to set things right. With her father’s young apprentice, Elias, along for the journey, Linny travels from the magical wrinkled country to the scientific land of the Plain, where she finds herself at the center of a battle between the logical and the magical.


“Nesbet’s (A Box of Gargoyles) charming though predictable fantasy introduces Linny, about to turn 12. In her mountain village of Lourka, that milestone will keep her out of danger, since any girlchild who has ever touched a lourka (the village’s eponymous musical instrument) will be spirited away by evil Voices on her 12th birthday. Linny has not only touched a lourka, she has fashioned one of her own; yet when the day comes, the Voices take her best friend Sayra instead. Linny ventures beyond her mountains for a way to bring Sayra back, discovering in the strange lands of the Broken City that there is an ancient prophecy she resembles about the Girl with the Lourka, and that she is being swept up into a revolution far beyond her control. Spritely characterization, complex worldbuilding, and efforts to create a landscape of moral ambiguity nearly balance Nesbet’s thoroughly telegraphed plot and tendency to drop threads of story. Linny herself, despite being something of a cliché of the spirited heroine, has enough interiority and dimension to maintain interest.”
Ages 8–12. (Nov.)
Publishers Weekly