It begins with Abigail, an ordinary girl in an ordinary world, who is spirited away to a fantastical land. Here she meets a mysterious band of aunts, who reveal that she is destined for much more. Abigail must enter into a story to save a unique tree, the bloodtree, and break a spell that holds the kingdom in thrall. She has companions: Flint, with his wolvish eyes and tragic past and his friend Bramble, slow to trust and quick to judge. Together they must unweave the riddle and help restore the bloodtree.
Charmingly written, the plot jumps Abigail from the modern world and into the fantastical Silvering kingdom, where the dastardly Rackenard is conspiring against the royalty, and denying decent stories from the realm. Interwoven with this is the Aunts, as their words help to shape the story. There are three levels to this tale, which makes it quite a sophisticated plot for the younger readers, but opens it up to discussion and interpretation.
It is a story of friendship, courage and determination, with a touch of fairy tale added into the mix.
by Elizabeth Pulford
Published by Scholastic NZ