'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Thursday 1 August 2019

Review: Barben's Magic Quest

Australians Kate and her brothers Mike and Aaron, are holidaying with their parents and two cousins Sarah and Jacob in Ireland. 

It is the first leg of an around the world trip. Aaron is a forest ranger in Australia, and is using the trip to discover and learn about the trees in the ancient forests of each place they visit.

Katie and her cousin Sarah, go back to an elevated area where they had been the previous day, to view a canopy of trees. Katie believes she saw what appeared to be a fairy. And it was. 

The girls meet Elly. She sprinkles fairy dust over them and they gain magic powers.

These magic powers set them on an adventure of a lifetime. They move into the world of magic, treemen, elves, leprechauns, witches, warlocks and trolls.

Meanwhile, the boys are being followed by a man with questionable intentions. Addition powers are needed to be able to protect them from harm as there are threats everywhere, it seems. There is a warring of good and evil when traitors in their midst pit their magic against the children’s.

Barben, the Keeper of the forests, offers the children powerful protection in the form of an amulet and a golden orb, to carry his special magic to his helpers in the countries they are travelling through. They agree to join the fight against the enemies of the ancient forests and help stop the desecration that is well under way.

Their greatest enemy is Erwin the Great, Keeper of fields and moors. Erwin sees his areas as threatened, for people have returned to planting trees and creating forests. What will become of his lands? Both Keepers are fighting to save what they believe in.

This is an adventure story with an environment theme sprinkled with magic, and with enough twists, turns and tension to hold the reader’s interest throughout the book. It is open-ended which allows more challenges, more magic and the opportunity to build up its characters, especially Aaron, in the next book.

Title: Barben’s Magic Quest
Author: Elaine Ouston
Publisher: Morris Publishing, $19.95
Publication Date: October 2018
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9780648164784
For ages: 9+
Type: Middle Grade Fiction