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Children's Fiction Fantasy & Magic

In the Serpent's Wake

by (author) Rachel Hartman

Tundra Book Group
Initial publish date
Feb 2023
Fantasy & Magic, General, Medieval
Recommended Age
12 to 18
Recommended Grade
7 to 12
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Feb 2022
    List Price
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Feb 2023
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Where to buy it


Tess sets out on a sea-faring adventure to stop a war in the latest fantasy novel from New York Times bestselling author Rachel Hartman, now in paperback.

Tess has a mission from the Queen: sail across the oceans to the bottom of the world and prevent a war. Unbeknownst to the Queen, Tess also intends to find the last World Serpent — a once-mythical creature with the magical ability to heal her best friend Pathka from a life-threatening injury. Tess never was one to follow the rules and this self-assigned mission feels like her duty, her calling, her destiny.

Destiny has other ideas.

When someone from Tess's past makes a surprise return, old wounds are cracked open, throwing her mission — and both the Queen's and Tess's personal agendas — into complete disarray. What's more, Tess's personal pain is intertwined with a history greater than her own and the mending of it threatens the delicate balance of the entire Southlands. Tess was sent on this journey to prevent a war, but she may be starting one of her own.

About the author


  • Short-listed, Sheila A. Egoff Children's Literature Prize

Contributor Notes

RACHEL HARTMAN is the author of the acclaimed and New York Times bestselling YA fantasy novel Seraphina, which won the William C. Morris YA Debut Award in 2013, and the New York Times bestselling sequel Shadow Scale and Tess of the Road. Rachel lives with her family in Vancouver, Canada. In her free time, she sings madrigals, walks her whippet in the rain, and is learning to fence. To learn more, please visit

Editorial Reviews

"Wonderful, instantly immersive and deeply affecting." —The New York Times

“Hartman deftly reflects our own world’s worries in this adventurous fantasy, but always with an eye toward hope and healing…. This is a much-needed book.” —Booklist, starred review

“Hartman’s inclusive world grapples with questions of sovereignty and colonization, religion, and gender in ways that both reflect and comment on our own world…. A compelling duology closer." —Kirkus Reviews

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