Cover image for Across a star-swept sea
Across a star-swept sea
Peterfreund, Diana.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York, NY : Balzer + Bray, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, [2013]
Physical Description:
449 pages ; 22 cm
Sixteen-year-old Persis Blake struggles to balance her life as a socialite and a secret spy in a future where Regs, or regular people, have power over the Reduced--those genetically engineered or drugged into physical and mental impairments.
Reading Level:
850 Lexile.
Program Information:
Reading Counts RC High School 5.7 26 Quiz: 62229.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Hamburg Library Y FICTION Young Adult Fiction Young Adult

On Order



From Rampant and Ascendant author Diana Peterfreund comes this thrilling companion to For Darkness Shows the Stars.

Centuries after wars nearly destroyed civilization, Persis Blake's world is once again in the throes of rebellion.

For Persis, her public life is that of a socialite, filled with parties and ball gowns. But while she seems to be a frivolous aristocrat, inside Persis beats the heart of a spy--the same heart that is falling for the enemy, Justen Helo.

Persis's heart belongs to Justen, but before she can tell him the truth, she discovers he has a secret as well--one that could plunge their tropical paradise into another dark age. And Persis realizes she's not just risking her heart, she's risking the world she's sworn to protect.

Across a Star-Swept Sea is a romantic, science-fictional reimagining of the classic The Scarlet Pimpernel.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

In Peterfreund's complex follow-up to For Darkness Shows the Stars (2012), this retelling of The Scarlet Pimpernel casts feared New Pacifica spy The Wild Poppy as a young woman hiding her true identity beneath the frivolous exterior of air-headed socialite Persis Blake. The island kingdom of Galatea is one of the remaining places where humans managed to survive and thrive after terrible wars centuries earlier decimated the earth and its populations. The current aristocratic rulers are under serious threat from revolutionaries who have tired of classist rule and now fight for equality. With the effects of pills that simulate the feared Reduction that enfeebles minds and makes the aristos mindless slaves to the overthrowing masses, the very way of life on the islands of New Pacifica is imperiled. While this is touted as a stand-alone novel, readers may be less confused if they read Baronesse Emmuska Orczy's classic first. Engrossing and fast-paced, this should be a hit with the dystopian YA crowd.--Trevelyan, Julie Copyright 2010 Booklist

Publisher's Weekly Review

Peterfreund (For Darkness Shows the Stars) dips into the classics again, this time mining The Scarlet Pimpernel for deeds of derring-do. The spy is Persis Blake, 16 and chief lady-in-waiting to the ruling princess of the island of Albion. Her parents conveniently distracted, Persis is free to quit school, spend unlimited money on her wardrobe (and disguises), and flit from party to peril, all while pretending to be "Albion's loveliest, silliest socialite." Her true cause is rescuing tortured aristocrats from the revolution gripping the neighboring island of Galatea. But on one expedition, the "Wild Poppy" returns with an unexpected refugee: Justen Helo, grandson of the most famous doctor on Galatea, gifted medic, and revolutionary. Such a celebrity must naturally be feted at court, where the risk he will uncover the Wild Poppy's double life is dangerously high. The story teeters into hyperbole at times, and the political debates and info-dumps can grow tedious. Still, it's a charming bit of light adventure, and the chance to revisit the elaborate world Peterfreund created in For Darkness is welcome. Ages 13-up. Agent: Deidre Knight, the Knight Agency. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

School Library Journal Review

Gr 9 Up-Persis is an airhead aristo who cares only for the latest styles and tending to her queen-or is she? The Wild Poppy is a renegade who rescues enslaved aristos from the clutches of revolutionaries-or is he? In truth, they are one and the same. The novel follows the adventures of Persis and "the league" as they attempt to right the wrongs inflicted by Galatean revolutionaries upon society. Persis might have carried on at the same pace-socialite by day, spy by night-if her path hadn't crossed with Justen's. He is grandson to the famous Persistence Helo, inventor of a treatment that saved many from suffering "reduction," but also proved to have unintended side effects. Once Justen enters Persis's life, seemingly remorseful for the dark direction taken by his people and ready to make things right, she is unsure if she can trust him. As she wrestles with her simultaneous distrust and growing admiration for him, all the while continuing her mission as the Wild Poppy, adventure and intrigue unfold. Persis's well-drawn world is one of genetically engineered pets and communication methods called palmports that require users to take supplements to sustain their functionality. It provides the backdrop for a well-paced story led by a strong and likable heroine. Readers will relish its tender moments, especially one shared by Persis and Justen in a star-swept cove, as much as its abundant moments of suspense.-Jill Heritage Maza, Montclair Kimberley Academy, Montclair, NJ (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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