On Gwyn’s 9th birthday, his grandmother tells him he may be a magician, like his Welsh ancestors. She gives him five gifts to help him–a brooch, a piece of dried seaweed, a tin whistle, a scarf, and a broken toy horse. One blustery day, unsure what to do with his newfound magic, Gwyn throws the brooch to the wind and receives a silvery snow spider in return. Will he be able to use this special spider to bring his missing sister, Bethan, home? THE SNOW SPIDER spins an icy, sparkly web of mystical intrigue that sets the stage for the next two books in this outstanding trilogy!
One night, Gwyn asked his sister Bethan to go up the mountain and rescue his ewe; she was never seen again. Now he is 10, still blamed by his father for Bethan’s disappearance, and wonders if his grandmother’s hints that he is a magician could possibly be true. If he is, he wants to use his powers to get Bethan back. A girl, in fact, arrives in the village, so similar in her ways to Bethan that her presence acts as a salve on the family’s wounds. And Gwyn, with the overeagerness of an apprentice, unleashes the darker side of his magic. Nimmo’s story, set in the Welsh countryside, contains elements of SF and fantasy, but it’s firmly grounded in very real themes of blame and responsibility. She displays a mastery of family nuancesthe little rituals that can keep a family whole or tear it apart if those same gestures are ignored or forgotten. Ages 10-up. (July)
There is nothing like a hearty brogue to drop a listener into a faraway land, in this case Wales in olden times. Keating’s wonderfully rich voice does just that. Though this first volume of a trilogy takes place in present-day Wales, the past is alive, especially when nine-year-old Gwyn realizes that he may have the powers of his namesake, a magician from centuries ago. At the center of this adventure, Gwyn sets out on a journey to find his sister, who disappeared on a nearby mountain, without a trace, on the day Gwyn turned five. Keating’s reading of the tale is flawless. He easily ranges from the boy’s excitement and anticipation to the wavery voice of his eccentric grandmother, Nain. It is Nain who gives Gwyn five gifts for his ninth birthday, each a small object that he must ‘give to the wind’ in order to receive strange and magical things in return. The first and most helpful is the snow spider, Arianwen, who spins webs that allow Gywn to peer into other worlds. Keating spins the tale in a similar way; his mastery may well convince readers that this fictional world is real. Ages 9-up. (Sept.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Harry Potter fans have reason to rejoice. A new, young magician has arrived from the UK with exciting adventures, which involve an amazing silver spider named ‘Arianwen’ who spins silvery, magical cities and flying ships. Our young magician, Gwyn, lives a lonely life in Wales with his sad parents who lost their beloved daughter, Bethan, years earlier on Gwyn’s birthday. Gwyn’s father barely notices him because of the grief he’s been carrying through the years, and each of Gwyn’s birthdays is sadder than the last. On Gwyn’s ninth birthday, however, Gwyn’s grandmother, Nain, brings him five unusual gifts: a piece of seaweed, a yellow scarf, a tin whistle, a twisted metal brooch, and a small broken horse. These gifts will determine whether or not Gwyn has the magical touch believed to be his destiny passed down from his magical ancestors, Math, Lord of Gwynedd, Gwydion, and Gilfaethwy. The ways in which Gwyn discovers his gifts are clever and unusual. There are some exciting outdoor scenes and very inventive fantasy adventures that take place. Gwyn tells his mortal friends about his excitement about being a magician, but they shun him. As his grandmother warned him, the lonely boy becomes lonelier. Thanks to Arianwen, Gywn and his family’s deepest desires are revealed through a vi