Jatta, by Jenny Hale

Jatta woke soaked in sweat. The nightmare was retreating deep below the throbbing in her head.
She lay draped through a door in a smoky corridor trampled with blood. Ceiling-high barricades burned. Beyond, guards peered through, their expressions a mixture of resentment, loathing and fear. Behind her, metal scraped on tile – if it was her garden bars opening, they had warped. She eased backwards into her chambers, wincing as she discovered fresh bruises over her chest.

Jatta is an Alteedan princess, but her life is far from carefree. Ever since her mother was killed by werewolves when Jatta was a toddler, the palace has been shadowed by fear. Now, Jatta discovers that the werewolves did not just take her mother – they also stole Jatta’s future. As she is haunted by terrible dreams, it becomes increasingly clear that nothing in her life will ever be the same.

Jatta and her bother must flee the palace and embark on a journey to try to save Alteeda. But each month, at the time of the wolf moon, Jatta becomes dangerous – to herself, to her brother, and to everyone else whose path she crosses. Will she be Alteeda’s saviour – or its ruin?

Jatta is a thrilling fantasy tale for young adult readers. Jatta begins the novel as a seemingly fragile child, small for her age and sheltered from evil – and from the terrible truth – by her protective family. As the story, and Jatta’s quest, unfold, it becomes clear that it is not only Jatta’s wolf which is strong and determined. Jatta herself is brave, loyal and very wily. The challenges she faces seem insurmountable at times, yet she works with her brother and some unlikely allies to overcome them. The plot is filled with the aforementioned challenges, with twists and turns, and with action, in a blend which will satisfy teen readers.


Jatta, by Jenny Hale
Scholastic, 2009

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