Resource Links Review - Secret of the Stone Circle

Resource Links
Reviewed by: Patricia Jerney

This novel is the third in a series of Emily's magical adventures. Her parents have recently divorced, and now Emily has the chance to travel with her geologist father to Scotland. This is her mother's family's ancestral home, and Emily has inherited two special gifts: the ability to see visions, described in Scotland as 'fey',, and a wondrously wrought mirror, handed down to the women in that family line who can use it to enhance their visionary power. During her summer travels, Emily hopes to find out more about her family history, and to resolve the mystery of a woman she has seen in the mirror.

As Emily works through her conflicted feelings for her father, she encounters a collection of Scottish eccentrics: the wealthy laird, his housekeeper who also has the gift of second sight, a handsome young rogue, a crotchety relative and his ailing mother. There are also the plot events typical of a mystery: their cottage is broken into, but nothing of value is stolen, cemetery tombstones and painted portraits provide missing information, and a secret note is discovered in a hidden drawer. Sometimes these twists and turns are a little too predictable, and it seems odd that Emily's mother, whose family line is the key to the story, is entirely absent after the second page. But those slight shortcomings will probably not concern the intended audience: girls ages 10 to 14. Rather, Emily's persistence and lively curiosity move the novel forward believably, with interesting insights into Scottish history and genealogy. Thematic links: Coming of age, family relationships, genealogy, Scottish history, second sight.

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