Thank you to Simon & Schuster for partnering with my on this Keeper of the Lost Cities post and giveaway. All opinions are my own.
Looking for the perfect summer reading fantasy series for tweens? With 7 books totaling over 4,000 collective pages, the Keeper of the Lost Cities series will keep them lost in a good book all season long! The best news? They won’t have to wait long to find out what happens next. The 8th book in the series, Legacy, releases on 11/5/2019.
Read on to learn more about this fantasy series for fans of books like Harry Potter and The School of Good and Evil, plus don’t miss the giveaway at the end!
What is Keeper of the Lost Cities About?
FYI, this post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase, I earn a small commission at no extra charge to you. Thanks!
I’ve seen SO many MG series calling themselves the next Harry Potter, but very very few deliver on the promise. Messenger succeeds with Keeper of the Lost Cities because rather than trying to actually be the “next Harry Potter,” she’s offered a completely new and equally engaging world to explore. Take a look at the blurb, then read on to find out why it’s a must-read for tweens this summer.
Get hooked on the New York Times-bestselling series that’s taking the world by storm!
When Sophie Foster discovers she’s an elf from the Lost Cities, she embarks on an incredible adventure, discovering new abilities, and making new friends. But the secrets of Sophie’s past were buried for a reason and the truth she uncovers could put all of the worlds in danger.
As mentioned above, the series currently includes 7 books, with an 8th one releasing just in time for the holiday season. Here they are in order:
In Stores Now
- Book 1: Keeper of the Lost Cities (check out an expert here)
- Book 2: Exile (Excerpt)
- Book 3: Everblaze (Excerpt)
- Book 4: Neverseen (Excerpt)
- Book 5: Lodestar (Excerpt)
- Book 6: Nightfall (Excerpt)
- Book 7: Flashback (Excerpt) –also out in paperback, October 8, 2019
As mentioned above, Book 8: Legacy releases on November 5, 2019 (just in time for the holidays).
Take a peek at the cover!
View this post on Instagram
Here it is—the gorgeous cover of LEGACY!!!! (illustrated by @jasonchanart—and designed by Karin Paprocki). AND BEFORE YOU STOP READING TO STARE AT THE SHINY—WAIT! I HAVE MORE BIG NEWS! 🌟🌟🌟 The first edition of LEGACY (meaning ALL the copies from the original printing of the book) will have some very special extra bonus content! I will share more info soon, but the first edition will only be available WHILE SUPPLIES LAST, so the best way to get a copy is to PRE-ORDER from ANY retailer. 🌟🌟🌟 Okay, now back to the cover! I LOVE IT SO MUCH!! 😍 The outfits! 😍 The facial expressions! 😍 The handholding! 😍 How powerful my little girl is—and how ridiculously handsome my boys look! 😍 In case you can't tell, this is Sophie, Keefe, and Fitz! And I know there's always debate over who you're hoping will be on the cover. But remember: covers are about the *scene*. We have to find an image that embodies the *feel* of the story. And there was absolutely no better way to capture the feel of this book than a scene where the three characters wrestling with various "legacies" must work together to face an unseen enemy. 💖💖💖 No, I won't tell you who they're fighting. Or why they're in London (though those who've read FLASHBACK might have some theories—please don't spoil in the comments for those who haven't read). And since I'm sure you're all wondering what Sophie's doing, I will say that she's Inflicting. And that's ALL I'm going to tell you. The rest you'll find out when you read. And again, please keep all spoilers out of your comments. Save that for your own feeds. 🌟 And now, I NEED to get back to writing. But I'm probably going to stare at this for a few more seconds because 😍😍😍! #kotlc #keeperofthelostcities #shannonmessenger @simonkids
What makes Keepers of the Lost Cities the must-read series of the summer?
First of all, Keeper of the Lost Cities is that rare gem of a series that is both girl and boy friendly. Like Harry Potter, Sophie has a diverse group of friends, so tweens are pretty much guaranteed to see themselves in at least one of the characters. Fans of Hermione Granger will definitely adore Sophie Foster. She has the same bravery, intelligence and complexity that made Rowling’s heroine so appealing.
Tweens and teens who adore a good love triangle won’t be disappointed, either. Sophie has two main love interests and many fans root for one or the other, considering themselves either “Team Keefe” or “Team Fitz.” Since the series begins when she’s 12 and continues over the course of a few years, readers get to see the love triangle grow and evolve naturally. If your tween isn’t really into love stories, don’t worry: it’s a secondary plot. You won’t see Sophie go catatonic just because a boy didn’t pay adequate attention to her. 😀
Although the setting is otherworldly, the themes are things that all tweens can relate to. Some of the major themes throughout the first 7 books include:
- Feeling different, like you just don’t belong anywhere, like you’re a “freak”
- Dealing with secrets and knowing who to trust
- Helping those who are different from us or who need it the most
- Discovering that family isn’t always about who you’re related to
- Learning to find yourself outside your family’s expectations, and that it’s okay to be different
Like other successful middle grade series (Harry Potter again, pretty much anything by Riordan, etc), the moral and ethical lessons aren’t thrown in your face, but rather discovered through great storytelling. In other words, Messenger doesn’t just repeat “It’s okay to be different,” but rather shows you a strong set of characters who make this discovery throughout their journey.
While the series is geared towards tweens, like all the best MG fantasy series it’s also a fun read for adults. I suggest reading it along with your kids and discussing it together, a la family book club style!
It’s easy to see why Keepers of the Lost City has over 1 million books in print worldwide, and why Shannon Messenger has such a devoted fanbase. FYI, she shares a lot of great content on her Instagram page, including character art, teasers for upcoming installments, answers to fan questions, and more.
View this post on Instagram
Been a hectic few weeks (that’s why I haven’t posted much), so I recently started doodling again—such a great way to clear my head. And I love this one so much, I might have to see if there’s a way to write the design into LEGACY. (It’s a black swan and a young moonlark, with Panakes branches overhead) *brainstorms* . And I know you guys are still super eager to see the cover. The artist is still working on it so we shall all have to keep being patient! #shannonmessenger #keeperofthelostcities #kotlc
Keeper of the Lost Cities Summer Read-Along
Shannon Messenger is hosting a summer series read-along from June 10th – July 29th with the designated hashtag #KeeperReadAlong. Each of the 7 weeks will be dedicated to a book (in series order) with a kickoff from Shannon on Mondays plus a post answering a fan’s question about that book the following Sunday.
Connect with Keeper of the Lost Cities
- Visit KeeperOfTheLostCities.com
- Follow Shannon Messenger on Instagram
- Follow Simon & Schuster on Instagram | Twitter | Facebook
- Check out the Educator guides for each book here. If you’re hosting a summer reading book club for kids, they have some great conversation starters!
About the Author
Shannon Messenger graduated from the USC School of Cinematic Arts, where she learned—among other things—that she liked watching movies much better than making them. She’s studied art, screenwriting, and film production, but she realized her real passion was writing stories for children.
She’s the New York Times and USA Today-bestselling author of the award-winning middle grade series, Keeper of the Lost Cities, as well as the Sky Fall series for young adults. Her books have been featured on multiple state reading lists, published in numerous countries, and translated into many different languages. She lives in Southern California with an embarrassing number of cats.
Find her online at ShannonMessenger.com.
We did not read this series. My son liked reading the Percy Jackson books.
I’m sure my daughter would enjoy this series. It’s tough to get her to read but I’m sure a adventure series like this would peak her interest.
I haven’t read this series yet but my daughter has always loved Diary of a Wimpy Kid series!
Diary of a Wimpy Kid is a favorite in our household.
Haven’t read yet but loved Harry potter
We haven’t read it. My daughter is reading A Dog’s Journey right now.
I have’t read this one yet. My kids love Diary of a Wimpy Kid series.
My daughter loves this series, can’t wait for Legacy!
I love the adventure in these books and I sure would love to own them.
We haven’t read any of these yet but they look awesome! I would also recommend the City of Bones books by Classandra Clair for summer reading!
We didn’t read this. I like the Percy Jackson series
I have not read this series yet but it is on my to be read list. I would recommend reading The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind.
My granddaughter enjoyed Secret Garden and the Flight Night series.
I love the adventure, joy, and the “fight” behind the characters. I started reading book one and couldn’t put it down. After completing book 7, I’m in love with the characters and the story.
Would love to read these books
My kids would love this
I havent read these yet, but I am sure me and my son would love them. My son really doesn’t read series that much
We have not read this series yet. My son likes the Harry Potter series.
I have not read this series. My recommendation is The Dark Is Rising series.
No I haven’t read this yet. I would recommend the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series!
I haven’t read it but would love to
My daughter would love this series
My kids are currently reading Percy Jackson.
I haven’t read this series yet I will know that I know about it thanks
We haven’t read any of the Keeper of the Lost Cities series, yet. I would recommend The Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis!
We haven’t read these yet but we would love too! She just started reading Britfield together and have been enjoying it!
no not yet ,but very interested in reading soon
I think my niece would really enjoy this series. It sounds like a really good read. I haven’t read it but these tween series are really good reads no matter what your age.
We havent read this series before. I would recommend The Chronicles of Prydain series. It is fantasy and follows until the child matures. A good read.
We have not read this series. The Percy Jackson series is one many kids enjoy.
I have not read this series I would recommend the Percy Jackson series!
I haven’t read the series but for teens I would recommend reading Educated.
I haven’t read this series but I would recommend Diary of a Wimpy Kid for tweens. My son loves that series.
No I haven’t read them. My son reads mostly pokemon books
I have not read this book. A good summer read for teens is the spin off of Percy Jackson. It still has Percy in it but he’s lost!
I have not read the books. When my son was little he loved the Twilight series.
No i have not read any of theses books but would love too
I haven’t read Keepers of the Lost Cities yet. I’m currently reading The Fablehaven series by Brandon Mull. I will be passing this on to my tween grandson. It’s also a good series.
The Girl in the Well Is Me by Karen Rivers. I highly recommend it for a quick, thoughtful read
I recommend Narnia!
We have not read this series. I always recommend the Harry Potter series.
We have not read this series yet, but we love the Harry Potter series.
This looks like a fun read.
I have not read any but they look like a really good series.
I have not read the series, yet. My tween is currently reading Harry Potter!
My niece loves series like this and is looking forward to reading this series soon!
I have not read this but my daughter would love reading this. She said another good set is dead cities.
I have not read this as of yet. My son always liked Pokemon books and my daughter Harry Potter.
The Diary of a Wimpy Kid series is a favorite in my house. This series looks like a good read as well.
I’m not sure if anyone else is have trouble with Gleam, but it is no longer allowing me to enter any giveaways.
My son was a big Harry Potter fan.
We have not read this series but my son loved Percy Jackson
I would love to read all of the books. The books look interesting.
I have not read any of the Keeper of the Lost Cities Series. In the Year of the Boar and Jackie Robinson by Bette Bao Lord is a great summer tween read.
We haven’t read any of these books yet. I recommend the City of Embers book – but skip the Prophet one because it has ZERO to do with the series (or read it first)!!