Serafina and the Black Cloak

Serafina and the Black Cloak

Book - 2015 | First edition
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In 1899, a twelve-year-old rat catcher on North Carolina's Biltmore estate teams up with the estate owner's young nephew to battle a great evil and, in the process, unlocks the puzzle of her past.
Publisher: Los Angeles : Disney-Hyperion, 2015
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9781484709016
Characteristics: 293 pages


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Jun 30, 2020

I really liked this book! It was violent but interesting. Once I started reading I couldn't stop!

Jul 09, 2019

My 8 year old loves this series. It was a good challenge for her, but she liked it so much, she wanted to read the entire series. Warning- it is a little dark and scary so be sure your kid is ready for it.

IndyPL_SteveB Jul 03, 2019

A well-done horror-fantasy novel for ages 11-14, set on the Vanderbilt family’s Biltmore Estate and Mansion in North Carolina in 1899. Serafina is the 12-year-old daughter of the Estate’s mechanic and they live in the mansion’s basement, secretly. Everyone else assumes the mechanic goes home at night and no one knows that he even has a daughter. Serafina is mostly out at night and has taken on the secret role as the mansion’s rat catcher.

While chasing down rats one night, she discovers a strange decayed-looking man in a black cloak dragging a sobbing girl behind him. Serafina sees the girl vanish into the cloak and then the man turns on her. She is just barely able to escape but then more children vanish in the next two nights. Serafina makes friends with one of the Vanderbilt nephews and they try to solve the mystery, nearly ending up the victims of the black-cloaked man themselves. The book is well-written and very exciting, with the growing friendship between Serafina and her new friend adding some warmth to the horror. The Biltmore Estate cooperated with the author.

Hillsboro_RobP Apr 29, 2019

Mysterious and tense, it's a good fantasy adventure with a purposeful protagonist and unusual secrets. Reminds me of Laika movies in a way, because it can get a little dark.

Feb 08, 2019

A fun, spooky middle-grade novel. I imagine I’ll booktalk the series regularly to kids who want something a little different, like The Graveyard Book.

daniellevk_0 Feb 07, 2019

Serafina is a 12 old girl who does not have any interaction with other people other than her dad. She has to stay hidden and pretends to not exist living in the basement of a mansion that her dad works in. She desperatley wanht s friends and to be apart of the outside world and all of that changes when she witnesses a kidnapping by a mysterious man in a black cloak. She meets the mansons's owner's nephew and they ework together to try to figure out where all the kidnapped kids are and who the man in the cloak is. She finds out who she really is in he process. This is a great book about a determined little girl who helps strangers and has a good heart wanting to do the right thing and to feel like she belongs. Each chapter ends with a cliffhanger where it will pull you in to read the next chapter to find out what happened or who was that kind of curiousity.

Nov 28, 2018

This series is AMAZING!!!!!! I've read all the books and now I am reading Willa of the wood! The author is great!

Aug 13, 2018

Biggest lingering question after finishing the book - what happened to all the people wandering off after the villain is defeated? I wonder how many of them got lost in the woods and eaten : D

Nov 21, 2017

I really liked this book,and soon after I finished it I read the three other books!
I think Serafina is a great character and I would highly recommend reading it.

alaude Sep 19, 2017

It's wonderful to come across a plot about something you had imagined in the past. When I picked up Robert Beatty's Serafina and the Black Cloak, about a girl who lives, hidden away in the basement of Biltmore Estate (home to the Vanderbilts) at the turn of the century, I was instantly intrigued. Though Beatty's story veered away from where I had imagined it might go, producing instead one of the creepiest villains I have read in children's literature, and adding in elements of folklore and mystery to the plot, I had to conclude that this man is a writer with fabulous ideas, and I can't wait to find out what else he has in store for Serafina.

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burgundy_dolphin_181 thinks this title is suitable for 9 years and over

Jun 30, 2020

sophiaSHkim thinks this title is suitable for 9 years and over

Aug 13, 2018

Sonneschimmereis thinks this title is suitable for 7 years and over

Apr 14, 2018

vv19 thinks this title is suitable for 9 years and over

May 28, 2017

blue_cat_11219 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

Oct 11, 2016

boydphelps thinks this title is suitable for 7 years and over


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Jul 19, 2019

Serafina had a normal life. For starters, her and her father, in which she calls 'pa', lives in the basement of the Biltimore Estate as stow aways and they remain un-noticed. Serafina was most active at night and some may call her nocturnal as she can see in the dark much better than the normal human and she can hear just as well. During these nights, she hunts the rodents of the night that scavenge on the food in the kitchen using the shadows as her allies. This job earned her the name of the C.R.C. or Cheif Rat Catcher. Once she catches them, she returns them to the woods surrounding the estate. Her father warns her to never go into the woods because of the horrible contents that lurk within. Her father works as a mechanic. Her mother... well her pa doesn't like to talk about her. As you can tell, I lied about Serafina. She has one of the most un-normal lifes you could ever imagine. And it only gets worse... Read Serafina and the black cloak for an amazing adventure and thrilling plot twists! You will never want to put the book down.

Apr 14, 2018

An intense book that takes the imagination to the edge and back. A very relatable story of a girl who is trying to find out who she is and how she fits into her world. The author creates a dark world that leaves you scared of shadows but you cannot look away until the end. Loved it.


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Apr 14, 2018

Frightening or Intense Scenes: Cloak captures children Bloody hands Fight scene with a mountain lion


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