Book Jacket of the Week: The Crickhowell School for the Muses

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When Awen is kidnapped from her rural village and confined at Crickhowell, where Miss Nina runs a thriving business in the muse trade, her misery eventually fades into relief. She finds a kind music teacher, discovers a new friend, and her only requirement as a student is to study the art of singing-her favorite thing in the world. However, Awen soon realizes that Miss Nina’s goal is not simply to train voices. She is trying to take them away. Determined to escape this fate, Awen becomes swept up into the intrigues of a scheming subordinate teacher, a salacious workman, a quirky artist-patron, and a handsome blond horseman. When both her own voice and the music around her mysteriously fade into silence, Awen’s only hope is to turn against the very artist she was commanded to inspire.

“Begin with a delicious premise—that muses can be trained and creativity can be bought—and add liberal dashes of mystery and peril, and you’ve arrived at Crickhowell. Rachel Waxman opens a portal to a world of midnight kidnappings and dashing horsemen, but the heart of her story is green-eyed, golden-throated Awen, an ordinary young woman caught up in an adventure she never sought.”—Gemma Tarlach, author of Plaguewalker and The War’s End
“The shadows of despair cast by foreboding castles and ugly schemers are not dark enough to blot out the sunny spirit of a true muse. Waxman’s tale of the muted Awen breaking into freedom’s song and service is a triumph that calls us all to the light.”—Gary McLouth, author of Do No Harm and Natural Causes
“Part Jane Austen, part Cinderella and part Heidi, The Crickhowell School for the Muses takes the reader on a journey with young Awen that holds much promise of being the next “must read” series for young adult readers. Bravo to Waxman for this novel of a young woman’s self-discovery!”—Joy Ward, author of Haint: A Tale of Extraterrestrial Intervention and co-author of Interviews from the Ark

About the Author: Rachel Waxman is a writer, oboist, and online marketing coordinator at Lucinda Literary. This is her first book. Learn more at

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