Sunday, March 11, 2007

Of Trolls and Rings and Fantastical Things

Title: The Farthest-Away Mountain
Author: Lynne Reid Banks

Soon she had left the village behind. She climbed a little green hill and ran down the other side, and when she looked back she couldn’t see any of the village except the tip of the church steeple. She crossed a rushing, mint-green river by jumping from rock to rock, and then she was as far away from home as she’d ever been.

Fourteen-year-old Dakin vows she will not marry until she has done three things – traveled to the farthest-away mountain, met a gargoyle, and found a prince to be her husband. As a result, her matrimonial prospects are hardly rosy. No one, not even her father, the most-traveled man in the village, has been to the farthest-away mountain; everyone knows gargoyles are wicked creatures of fantasy; and the country’s prince can’t marry until the missing Ring of Kings, stolen so many years ago, is found.

But then Dakin wakes one morning, to hear the farthest-away mountain calling her. She has to go.

She embarks on her quest to the mountain secretly, taking with her nothing but a beloved brass troll belonging to her family. Numerous adventures await: a new friend that she never expected, a talking frog, magically-colored snow, ogres and witches and – yes – even gargoyles. And while she doesn’t quite find a prince to marry, she does manage the next best thing: a book dork.

The Farthest-Away Mountain
, written by Lynne Reid Banks, has been one of my favorite books ever since I was a little girl. I loved it then, love it now, and will probably love it when I’m old, grey, and crooked. It was another of those books I read way back over Christmas during a lazy afternoon, pretending I was a kid again. Personally, I think anyone could enjoy it, regardless of age, gender, and predilection for fantasy. Check it out if you haven’t already, or at least remember it when it comes time to buy a present for a little ‘un.

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posted by Elizabeth at 7:14 PM


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