Cover image for Stravaganza : city of stars
Stravaganza : city of stars
Hoffman, Mary, 1945-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Bloomsbury Children's Books, 2003.
Physical Description:
452 pages ; 22 cm.
Fifteen-year-old Georgia, who loves horses as much as she hates her bullying stepbrother, buys a figurine of a winged horse and finds it has magical powers that transport her from present-day London to the sixteenth-century world of Talia where, in the city of Remora, similar to Sienna, Italy, she finds danger and intrigue as well as friendship and a chance to perfect her riding skills.
General Note:
Sequel to: Stravaganza: city of masks.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR MG+ 6.1 18.0 75560.

Reading Counts RC 6-8 7.2 25 Quiz: 40303 Guided reading level: NR.
Format :


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Material Type
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X Young Adult Fiction Popular Materials-Young Adult

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Georgia is an ordinary girl, living in London with her mother, stepfather and bully of a stepbrother and coping with the difficulties of growing up. But all that changes when she buys a tiny figurine in the form of a winged horse and suddenly finds herself swept up into the world of the Stravagante. Her talisman, the figurine, transports her to Remora the Talian parallel to Siena, Italy. There she meets Lucien, the Stravagante we first met in City of Masks and many other fascinating people who are in the midst of preparing for the Stellata, the city's annual horse race. Intrigue, romance, and the rare appearance of a true winged horse ensure an exciting adventure to rival the first in this captivating series.

Author Notes

Children's author and reviewer Mary Hoffman was born in 1945. She attended Newnham College to study English literature and University College London to study linguistics. She started writing in 1970 and has written about eighty children's books including the picture book Amazing Grace, the Stravaganza series, and the anti-war anthology Lines in the Sand. She is also the editor of the children's book review magazine Armadillo, which comes out four times a year.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Gr. 6-10. Cruelly teased and tormented by her older stepbrother, Georgia feels trapped in an impossible family situation, with horseback riding as her only escape. After she buys a small statue of a winged horse, she discovers that it is a talisman with the power to transport her through space and time from modern London to Talia, a sixteenth-century, alternative Italy. Georgia first appears to Cesare, son of a horse master in Remora (Sienna), where he has recently witnessed the miraculous birth of a flying horse, a good omen. Still, there's trouble ahead for Cesare in Remora and for Georgia in both worlds, now that she has become one of the Stravaganti, time travelers between London and Talia. Readers of the Stravanganza: City of Masks (2002) will be pleased that several of the main characters reappear, which develops their stories a bit further while introducing a vivid new setting and an involving narrative focused on Georgia. The lovingly created, richly detailed locales are one of the distinctive pleasures of the series, along with the subtle portrayals of both major and minor characters. In other novels, shifts in point of view and setting often confuse the reader and impede the narrative, but here they propel the story, carrying readers along for an adventurous ride. This leaves readers with the hope of more to come. --Carolyn Phelan Copyright 2003 Booklist

Publisher's Weekly Review

Characters travel through space and time, encounter mysterious creatures and more in an assortment of new installments. Of the first book, Stravaganza: City of Masks, PW said, "The Renaissance backdrop [and Venetian-style city] set an elegant mood for the time-travel toggling." This time a miniature model of a winged horse (another talisman of the Stravaganti, a brotherhood of scientists who use talismans to travel between time periods) sends 15-year-old equestrian Georgia to a 16th-century version of Tuscany in Stravaganza: City of Stars by Mary Hoffman. There Georgia gets caught up in the intrigue surrounding the birth of a real winged horse. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

Gr 7 Up-Mary Hoffman's sequel (Bloomsbury, 2003) to Stravaganza: City of Masks (July 2003, p. 72) brings a new character, London schoolgirl Georgia O'Grady, into the complex world of 16th-century Talia. Georgia's "stravagation" between her world and the city of Remora connects her not only with people embroiled in powerful political machinations, but also with an old schoolmate, the former Lucien, who apparently died of cancer in the 21st-century, but now lives as Luciano in Talia. Remora, laid out both physically and socially as a reflection of the zodiac, is preparing for its annual horse race, an endeavor the horse-loving Georgia joins, disguised as a stable boy. She travels to Remora only during 21st-century nights, her daytimes still filled with school, her bullying stepbrother, horseback riding, and violin lessons with Lucien's mother. Among the many people-Stravaganzi and mortals-whom she befriends in Remora is Falco, a youth with a crushed leg and the desperate wish to find a way to become whole enough to ride again. Georgia, Luciano, and Falco plan and execute a way to get Falco into the 21st-century, where modern medical intervention can fulfill his desire for unfettered movement. Kathe Mazur narrates with a variety of accents and voices, providing voices for the large cast of characters. The riveting and compelling story is complex and rich with subplots. Explanations of "stravagation" and the motives of the characters who carry over from book to book are presented so that this episode can stand alone, but those who have already heard the first volume won't feel burdened by repetition. A fine selection not only for fans of fantasy but also for those who enjoy historical fiction or the intricacies of politics.-Francisca Goldsmith, Berkeley Public Library, CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.