My son read this book, and he really enjoyed it.
Second book in a 6 book series, each running from 180 to 200+ pages. Scholastic 'certified' - says ages 9-12 but I'm pushing 60 and enjoyed all 6 books. I think 9 and up is just fine. Enjoyable read for both girls and boys...
NOTE: These books need to be read in sequence.
Major characters is Tal and (now) Milla (perhaps 12/13) who are about to start (unknown to them) the adventure of their lives. Tal has fallen into the Icecarls world (outside the Castle) and taken 'prisoner'. He has discovered a world not known to exist to him or his kind - a world of Ice and the people who live with the Ice and it's creatures. Milla is an Icecarl and dreams of someday becoming an Ice Maiden (warrior). The Icecarls did not know of the Chosen. Tal becomes obligated to assist the Icecarls as a matter of Honor, and Milla is sent with Tal to ensure Tals new mission is to be performed.
Lots of action, lots of twists. Keen perception of two cultures and their 'rules' of their society - pretty well done.
I give the complete series a 4.5 stars - Book one set up the story line and world parameters. Book two threw in a lot of new surprises. The adventure continues in excitement leaving you with a literal cliffhanger waiting for the next book (book 3) - fully enjoyable for anyone (girls and boys).
ice, wind, fury...light at only the castle..dangerous missions...good against evil!
Book two of the Seventh Tower series, by the author of the Keys to the Kingdom and Abhorsen.