Resource Links Review - Crow Boy
Reviewed by: Myra Junyk
In this second book of the Veil of Magic series, Maureen Bush once again transports Josh and his younger sister Maddie from Castle Mountain in Banff National Park, where his family is hiking to celebrate Joshs's twelfth birthday, to a magical land. In the first book, Josh and Maddie discovered a magical nexus ring which helped them cross the veil between the two worlds. The word nexus' means connection and links the two worlds together. After exploring this land of magic, they eventually entrust the ring to a giant named Keeper for safekeeping. Josh wants to return to this magical world using his limited mathematical ability., He is unsuccessful in opening the veil until Corvus, a strange black crow, helps them, cross into the magical world. Greeted by the Keeper, they find out about the damage the nexus ring has been causing. Although the ring helps to move between the two worlds, it also damages the veil and harms the magical world itself. When the ring falls into the hands of the water spirit Aleena, the two pursue her to get it back so the evil troll Gronvald does not find it. Readers will once again be fascinated by a world of magic endangered by the movement between the human world and the magical realm. 'Now human changes reach into our world, draining our magic.'(p. 11) It is full of strange creatures such as the otter people, water spirits and evil trolls. In their travels to save the nexus ring, Josh and Maddie have many interesting adventures: disturbing the endangered Banff Springs snails, hiking up the Stanley Glacier, surviving a battering by hail stones, travelling in the flow of the waters with Aleena, and being imprisoned by tree spirits. Throughout all these adventures, Maureen Bush is sending readers a clear message about the responsibility to preserve the natural beauty of our environment. The novel may take readers to a magical world, but they continually return to the real world. She tells us that 'Every living being counts'(p. 84). Readers who have not read the first volume in the series may have some initial difficulty understanding the situation and the characters. However, readers who enjoyed The Nexus Ring will definitely enjoy this new novel of magic and adventure full of 'rocks and wildness and ancient secrets'(p. 107) in the wilds of Canada Thematic links: Magic, supernatural, Banff National Park, Time Travel, Environmental Responsibility, Endangered Species.