Gypsy Rizka

by Lloyd Alexander
Release date: 1999
Type: speculative fiction
Genres: fantasy, young adult

Master storyteller Lloyd Alexander centers his newest tale around a clever, engaging gypsy girl who, with her feline sidekick, is always at the center of everything. Jaunty, outspoken, and unable to suffer fools, Rizka is the kind of person everyone in town has strong feelings about – she is either loved or despised. Since no one can ever get the better of her, certain "respectable" citizens of their small old-world hamlet want to rid the town of the troublemaker. If only someone had the brains to think up something that could do the trick. Laced with laughs throughout, the novel is told through episodically linked chapters about the absurd inhabitants of the town and their interactions with Rizka. Full of foibles, farce, fun-poking, and buffoonery, it is high comedy as much as a celebration of Rizka's brains and brassiness, her flouting of conventions, and her own brand of magic.

updated 2010-09-07

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