Owl seems like a normal girl, going to school and hanging out with her best friend Mallory, but she’s actually the daughter of a mortal and Jack Frost. When Summer seems literally endless and Owl can’t get to the world of the fae, she teams up with her old friend Mallory to figure out what’s going on. Could their missing friend Alberic, son of the Earl of Autumn, be part of the mystery?
This book is the sequel to A Girl Called Owl, and mixes archetypal figures, like Mother Nature and Jack Frost, with the everyday life of a British Middle Grade age kid. While it is a sequel, you can just jump right in and read this one if you want to, you don’t have to have read the previous for this one to make sense.
I really like Amy Wilson’s The Shadow’s Of Winterspell, so I was keen to read this book. I really like how she mixes classic fantasy or fairytale elements into modern children’s lives. Reading her books, I’m reminded of a lot of books that I read and loved as a kid that have really solid writing and characters, and came from that British tradition. I’m thinking of things like Enid Blyton or The Secret Garden. This perhaps isn’t right up there with those, but it’s in that vein of thinking and somewhat in that style.
I really like Owl as a character. I think Owl is a lovely name for a children’s book character and the Winter magic that she inherits from her fathers genes is really good. I liked how she had some big problems, like saving the world from dying because of an endless Summer, and some every day ones, like dealing with feelings of rejection from an absent father or feeling like she’s let her friends down. She joined by Mallory, who has no powers but finds out that she’s someone special too, and Alberic, who lives in the fae world even though he is half mortal. They have their own paths and problems. We also get to meet up with magical characters and worlds of the previous book, and these feel really well delineated and interesting.
I did find this one a little slow to get going, and there were a couple of cliche things towards the end, but I’m not sure that this is something that the target audience, Middle Grade, would notice. I feel like there’s a little wavering here, a little less sureness from the author somehow, but I do still recommend it. I think it’s a great Winter read for kids and with it’s beautiful cover and illustrated chapter headings, it would make an excellent Christmas gift.
Read It If: you liked Owl and wanted more of her or you’re looking for a modern take on older British children’s fantasy. Amy Wilson is an author to watch for this genre.
Thank you PGC Books for the ARC of this book for honest review. All opinions are my own honest thoughts.