School Library Journal

“In the same tradition as J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter or David Edding’s Belgariad series, a 13-year-old boy is found to have strange talents to be used for good or evil. When his parents go to China on business, New Yorker Davey Boehm is sent to live with his aunt and uncle in Great Oak, NC. He is nearsighted, a terrible athlete, and extremely smart – an easy target for the school bully. After missing the school bus, he comes face to face with the great oak that gives the town its name, and a squirrel gives him a necklace that begins to unlock the secrets of his mysterious ancestry. With help from the Cherokee tribe that lives up the mountain, he learns more about his great grandparents and discovers that he is a descendant of a long line of magicians. He then learns how to use his powers to free the town from a demonic spirit that has gained control over a prominent family. In a world in which wishes come true, enemies become allies, and animals can be communicated with, Davey grows to become a true hero and protector as was prophesized so many years before. Full of mystery and intrigue, this lengthy first book of the series will delight fantasy readers.”

Featured Review

Being in the book business myself I read a lot of young adult fantasy books. Ever since Harry Potter invaded all of our worlds we've all been looking for the NEXT Harry-like series. I'd like to tell you, this is it! This is a sensational debut teen fantasy novel that is sure to be enjoyed by people of all ages 9-90. The author blends magic and fantasy, family love and devotion with loyal friendships, then adds a mysterious aura of Cherokee mysticism and legend for a winning combination that should result in bestseller status if promoted and marketed properly.

   Thomas Blair has created a more advanced novel for the age group with multilevel plots and sub-plots, and has written this with more of an adult style which is also a breath of fresh air in teen literature. Our young hero learns early on in the book that he has a talent for talking to animals and soon learns he is a descendent of a secret line of Italian magicians. Davey's magical powers start out slow and simple and steadily grow throughout the book keeping readers totally riveted and engaged page after page, until the end where we find a young man with magical abilities that is a force to be reckoned with.

   The story revolves around a magical tree, a very spirited squirrel, some kamikaze ravens, a flying gypsy wagon, a kidnapper, a wise Indian chief, a school bully turned hero and a Native American boy who loves to talk like Crocodile Dundee. How much more can we ask for in a book as fun as this? Hopefully word of mouth with spread the news that this novel is a hit!

Jeannie Mancini, Books Unlimited, San Mateo, CA

Titled Reviews

The novel takes place in contemporary time and fits neatly between Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings. My students will love it.

Middle School Teacher

Suspenseful, intriguing, and uniquely magicalwith just the right blend of humor.

College Sophomore

An old-fashioned, good versus evil plot...I loved the way Daveys magic powers developed.

Eighth Grade Boy

A marvelous story filled with wholesome messages. I couldnt put it down.

Business Executive

An imaginative story built around wonderful word pictures and colorful characters. I recommend it for anyone over age ten.

Grandmother of Five

Another favoriteit now shares the shelf with Abarat by Clive Barker and Discworld by Terry Pratchett. I cant wait to read the next book in the series.

Seventh Grade Girl

A great plot full of original ideas...I loved the characters and the imagery.

High School Junior


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Last Updated November 06, 2007