Every week, The Thread checks in with booksellers around the country about their favorite books of the moment. This week, we spoke with Meredith Hylton, a bookseller at Indy Reads Books in Indianapolis.
Growing up, Meredith Hylton devoured young adult historical fiction.
So when she picked up "Serafina and the Black Cloak" by Robert Beatty, it was a welcome return to her young reader roots.
It's "a good escapist middle grade novel," Hylton said. The book, which mixes historical fiction with fantasy, takes place on the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, N.C. The protagonist is an unusual young girl named Serafina, who lives in the basement.
"She's part girl, but she's part something else — and it's a bit of a mystery the whole time," Hylton said.
"Serafina" has shades of classic "Goosebumps" and "Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark."
"It's exactly the kind of book I would have read when I was 11 or 12. And it was perfect, even now, as a good diversion — something you could read in just a few hours."
The book is the first in a trilogy, followed by "Serafina and the Twisted Staff" and "Serafina and the Splintered Heart."