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The Elves of Owl's Head Mountain

Clarion Review (4 Stars)

From starlight to snowflake from an ornament of the wizard Merlin to the finger of an eleven-year-old boy the magic begins. A week before Christmas Mitchell —who only wants a snowboard in his stocking— gets the ride of his life transported from his log cabin on Edison Road in the Adirondack Mountains to the Great House of Owl’s Head Mountain home of Queen Laurel and Chief Adota.

Chief Adota however is missing. For six months he’s been gone with his warriors hunting the children and elves stolen by the Darkensens. And for that reason Mitchell has been called to pass through the Canopy of Dreams.

Mitchell: “This place looks so familiar exactly like my world.”

“That’s because it is your world…” said the queen. “Where you are now is yet another dimension of the same place. Imagine the earth as an onion made of many thin layers and each layer a different dimension of the same world…. Here in this layer you are a being of magic.”

Transformed into an elf Mitchell must use his powers to save the mortal Queen and her daughters save the captive elves save the children from the evil of black magic. “The tears of a queen will guide you. The ghost of Shaman will protect you and the fate of this realm awaits your safe return.”

Author Jamie Sutliff has extended a film of magic and Algonquin mythology over his homeland in the Adirondacks illustrator Kevin Evans has brought it to bold graphic life. First in a series of three The Elves of Owl’s Head Mountain is young adult fiction full of adventure romance and battle: “The evil red light of the battle from the east side blocked the entrance to the valley beyond. Swords clanged in the distance steel on steel rang out in the night like hundreds of small bells.” Small battles fought and won lead to wounded egos and even larger battles for larger stakes. “Ancient powerful evil has awakened and the oldest white magic in the world gathers forces to fight it.”

As Mitchell becomes more familiar with the parallel world of magic learning to come and go at will and even bringing his dog along his part in the events becomes less of a physical challenge and more of a personal responsibility to the forces of kindness. This kindness extends not only to creatures of all colors but even to the food eaten at tables great and small. For example meals consist of fruits breads cheeses but never meat—a good thing if an elf plans on asking a cow or a chicken for help defeating an enemy. Mitchell also discovers that the ties of family run through the Canopy of Dreams back and forth between dimensions of time and place.

The Elves of Owl’s Head Mountain is a rich and rewarding story of a boy growing into his place in the adult world with the help of a little pixie dust.