Their return to Lexicon is not all that Ivan and Daphne imagined. For one thing, Aunt Adelaide is deathly ill. For another, their musical younger cousin, Lila, has stumbled into their secret land. Instead of rejoining old friends in the Land of Morning, Ivan and Daphne find themselves tracing Lila through a wintery landscape where what matters most is how well a person sings.
Sorted by musical talent and consigned to different lives, the cousins face cold, illness, and attempted murder. Slave, servant or fine lady, each has to escape a kind of imprisonment before they can find one another, foment a revolution and restore spring to the Land of Winter.
We have a beautiful draft cover with Ivan and Daphne in swirling blue and green cloaks and the Ice Castle in the distance, but I'm not allowed to show that yet.
To my delight, the copy editor used a light hand. I'm always happy to learn if a compound word is really one word, two words, or a hyphenated word. (The word "copy-editor," for example: I'm not really certain.) Copy editors pick up double periods or places where I've used a word twice in one sentence. Apparently we no longer put commas before "too," as in, "He insisted he was coming too." When I was in grade school, that had to be "He insisted he was coming, too." So I always learn a few things, like whether to put spaces between the dots in ellipses. But I'm happy to say the copy editor did not make many changes that affected meaning, so I won't have to fight back much. I will argue some wording.
Meantime, Joan Charles is converting sketches into fully realized drawings. She really brings out feeling, detail, and texture in her final drawings. I just sent Scarletta Press a sketch of the layout of one of the towns the cousins visit. We think we'll use an aerial view of that town as a frontispiece. The book is a fun, exciting one, and I'm thrilled to see it taking shape.