Willow Moss and the Vanished Kingdom begins when Willow has left for college. Specifically, a school that welcomes pupils with magical abilities. Normally, I’d think this was a very welcoming environment.
However, Willow Moss is wary. The Brothers of Wol, who run the schools, have traditionally disdained magical people. They have gone to great lengths to eradicate magic from the realm. But the wizard Silas has used his magical powers to elevate himself to the leadership of the fraternity.
Even worse, he has convinced the Enchancil (the magic council) members to send their children to public school. Willow Moss finds it hard to believe this is ever possible. The atrocity that Silas and the Brotherhood committed appears to have been forgotten by her parents and the council.
Willow Moss decides to visit her alma mater to learn more. The students and teacher alike immediately perceive her as dangerous. When the instructor finally gets used to having a witch for a student, the elf kid named Twist Howling shows up.
As the classroom is flipped upside down, Twist, master of the frigid Northwind, arrives and wreaks even more damage. The new assignments supplied by the Brothers of Wol are opened once the class has settled down. He seems quite confident all of a sudden.
He writes an ‘X’ in chalk on the door of the classroom and tells the students to start reading their brand new textbooks. This exposes the Brother’s agenda, which is to convince both magical and non-magical children that magic is bad.
The ‘X’ on the door is magical, and it will make all the kids happy and pleased when they go home, which will hopefully discourage them from ever using magic again. In essence, it amounts to indoctrination. But that’s not all; Willow Moss and her companions also learn that Silas is devising a plan to drain the magic from every magical being in Starfell.
The children are only the beginning of a horrific scheme to make Silas a god. At least in his mind, and who could possibly resist him if everyone else is silenced? The ‘elf staff’ is a strong magical staff that formerly belonged to the queen of the lost elf country of Llandunia, and Silas just needs it to finish his scheme.
The staff has the power to bestow or remove magic from anything or anybody. After the final magic battle to protect Starfell, the kingdom and the staff vanished. Nobody alive today has any idea where they might be. That certainly isn’t a real elf or human.
To find the location of the elf kingdom, Silas stole an ancient elf text. In light of this information, Willow Moss, Twist, Oswin, and Peg — the only non-magical kid in the class who isn’t terrified of the magic — must embark on a quest to recover what is missing and doesn’t want to be recovered.
But can they get out of the classroom without breaking the teacher’s charmed handcuffs?
Okay, I could easily spoil a lot by saying that the adventure takes off like a rocket and turns into a traditional battle of good and evil. Now, my readers, it is up to you to find out what becomes of our heroine and her friends. What did we conclude?
The stories of Willow Moss’s travels only improve with time. I’m sure you remember me mentioning that the first two stories were fantastic, but this one tops them both.
It’s awesome for more reasons than one. Oswin, the sweet Kobold who looks a lot like a cat but isn’t one at all, has a fantastic journey of his own, complete with an unwelcome but hilarious reunion.
You will agree after reading that the story’s lessons are skillfully weaved into the narrative, a hallmark of the best literature. It’s easy for us older folks to lose sight of the fact that we still have much to learn about what’s good and wrong.
Learn to appreciate your friends and the significance of your own abilities, no matter how minor they may appear in comparison to those of others. When you factor in Sarah Warburton’s amazing interior and cover artwork, you have a whole picture of why this series is so great.
If you like reading Dominique Valente, discover her more books in the series here.