Lark Ainsley lives within a near-hermetically sealed city located in a world scarred and depleted my magical wars. The Architects, who oversee the City, maintain it by harvesting the non-renewable magical energy found in each of the city’s inhabitants. But something goes wrong on Lark’s “Harvest Day,” and she soon finds herself on a quest to find safety outside the City’s walls–where the disappearance of magic has rendered the landscape a wasteland full of sadness and danger.
Skylark (Carolrhoda Books, 2012) is Meagan Spooner‘s debut novel, and the first installment of a planned trilogy. Spooner manages to weave a fresh and clever tale out of familiar elements, and her flair for blending darkness and light makes for a very enjoyable read. She also has some very interesting things to say about young-adult fiction, its place in SF&F, and about the transition from unpublished author to holding contracts for multiple books.