I'm looking for a young adult series. I read the first of installment a long time ago and I have never been able to find the rest. It starts with the protagonist scamming people with his ability to change the image displayed on the surface of an object; in this case, he changes one playing card to another in street games of "queens", where the goal is to find the queen. There are (maybe) 9 "dimensions" and as the characters go deeper into the realms, their abilities get stronger. For example, in the second realm, the main character can not only transform the surfaces of objects, but also the inside: he turns arrows shooting at his friend into harmless rose petals.

  • Can you go to scifi.stackexchange.com/tags/story-identification/info and answer those questions by answering those questions in your question to give us more information to help us help you? – FuzzyBoots Mar 5 '18 at 3:45
  • My first reaction was Nine Princes In Amber, but Kitkat's answer sounds like a better fit. – Daniel Roseman Mar 5 '18 at 7:40
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    @Kitkat I've voted to close it in the other direction. The answer here is far better than the one in the other. I suggest reviewers leave open this one and close the other as a duplicate of this one. – Edlothiad Mar 6 '18 at 13:32
  • They have the same answer, but are they not different questions? They use different things about the book to identify it - somebody else searching for this book might easily find one of these posts and not the other (and vice versa) – Daniel Mourad Mar 12 '18 at 3:23

This is The Book of Names, the first book of the Diadem series by John Peel.

Wiki summary:

The series takes place on several different worlds, collectively referred to as the Diadem. Travel between worlds is accomplished through the use of magic portals. The physical distance between worlds is irrelevant. Portal travel is based on the mystical geography of the Diadem, which is divided into five layers. The layers are a little like the layers of an onion and a drawing of them is the logo of the Diadem series and is on every book. At the center is a single world called Jewel, followed by the Inner Circuit, Middle Circuit, Outer Circuit, and Outer Rim. Magic is strongest on Jewel, and progressively weaker the "farther" a world is from the center. In the Outer Rim, magic barely functions at all.

"Queens" section:

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Duplicate of this.

  • PS: This is a super fun series! You should definitely read the rest. :) – Kitkat Mar 5 '18 at 4:54

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