*** FIVE STARS ***
Absolutely love this series. Anyone who misses the Harry Potter series will like this one, I promise.
This is probably my favorite book of the entire series. It keeps you on the edge of your seat as the "Darke" (the bad magic)threatens to overtake the kingdom. The Darke also tasks the strongest wizards, and for a while, the reader wonders who will come out unscathed (spoiler -- not everyone makes it).
Dragons, magic rings, mysterious dark clouds, "Things", ghosts (the good kind), a reunited son and mother, a duck (yep, a duck), and a tight-knit family dominate the pages. Long-held grudges are mended. Old places within the kingdom are revisited after many books ago. Long-asked questions are answered.
The lovely pencil illustrations in this entire series are an equal delight. And of course, I love the detailed maps.
Can't say enough good things. Sure, it's meant for kids and young adults, but just like Harry Potter, grown-ups will love it, too.
Highly recommended (but start with Book One).
Lori Anderson creates jewelry for her web site, Lori Anderson Designs, and wrote the blog An Artist's Year Off. She's also a contributor to Art Bead Scene. She is also the creator of the Bead Soup Blog Party.