The automa Pinocchio has always been duty-bound to serve in the floating palace of Venice’s emperor. So when Pinocchio finds himself locked in a trunk and delivered to a new master — a wanted criminal and alchemist named Geppetto — he is curious about everything around him. But most curious is the way Pinocchio seems to be changing from a wooden servant into a living, human boy. Before Geppetto and Pinocchio can uncover the mystery surrounding the automa’s transformation, Pinocchio is stolen away. Determined to find Geppetto again, Pinocchio begins a harrowing journey across the Empire, where danger in the form of half-beast outlaws and winged airmen abounds for a lost automa.
Meanwhile, Princess Lazuli, the daughter of the ruler of a magical kingdom called Abaton, is also on a quest through the emperor’s territory. Her father, Prester John, has been captured by the Venetian Empire, and Lazuli is desperate to rescue him. With the emperor’s airmen closing in fast, Lazuli learns the only hope for saving her father — and her beloved home — lies in Pinocchio and Geppetto.
In a masterful reimagining of Pinocchio, John Claude Bemis weaves an enchanting, thrilling adventure for middle-grade readers in the first installment in the Out of Abaton duology.
An inspiring speaker and entertaining performer, John Claude Bemis brings his passions for music, folklore, and spinning exciting tales to his novels and presentations. The first novel in his Clockwork Dark trilogy, The Nine Pound Hammer, was nominated for the North Carolina Children’s Book Award and was selected as a New York Public Library Best Children’s Book for Reading and Sharing. The trilogy continues with The Wolf Tree and The White City and has been described as “original and fresh” and “a unique way of creating fantasy.” His latest novel is The Prince Who Fell from the Sky. A musician and educator, John lives with his wife and daughter in Hillsborough, NC.