Mortal Fire by Elizabeth Knox
Set in the country of Southland some 50 years after Dreamhunter and Dreamquake which established that there is something magical about this land. Indeed there is. First there was The Place where dreams were found now there is the magic of the Zarene Valley and a Mining Disaster that happened 30 years ago.
Canny is a 16 year old girl but not a native Southlander. Her mother Sisema has an heroic past and her stepfather is a University Professor. Canny is brilliant at Mathematics but there is more to this gifted girl than that – she has Extra.
When her step brother, Sholto and his girlfriend Susan are sent to study the Mine Disaster of 1929 they take Canny with them and together they discover the magical Zarene Valley.
The inhabitants of the valley know that the magic is being sucked out of their valley but by what or whom?
On the hill in the Valley is a house that is protected by a powerful spell that keeps all out and restores the house evry day. There is one inhabitant who is a prisoner in the house, Ghislain. He is living a groundhog day existence and hasn’t aged since he was put there after the mine disaster.
Why is he imprisoned? What does he know of the mine disaster? Could the house be draining the magic out of the valley? All hell breaks loose when Canny finds Ghislain and her own magical powers begin to develop. Has Canny got a secret agenda of her own? Has Ghislain got a motive?and as Taggert used to say “Is it murder”?
Elizabeth Knox is a wonderful writer and she keeps the reader in this 400 page novel with an imaginative plot. However it really is for your exceptional reader. The gifted ones who adore fantasy and complicated stories.
I loved it but it is not for everyone. A young adult/Adult crossover.