Shadows & Secrets
post written by Emma Filbrun
Title: Shadows & Secrets
Author: Chautona Havig
Series: Annals of Wynnewood 1
Major Themes: Fantasy
Synopsis: When a teenage boy befriends the Creature that the entire village is afraid of, he learns a lot about himself, as well as about life in general.
Once again, Chautona Havig has taken a genre I don’t normally enjoy and crafted a story I could hardly put down. Shadows & Secrets is sort of a fairy tale, set in an imaginary village in England in medieval times.
Philip is just an ordinary village boy, apprenticed to the local arrow-maker. One day while he is playing with the other boys, he becomes interested in the Ge-sceaft, the Creature who wanders around the village wrapped in a cloak that completely hides what it is. When he discovers that this Creature is simply a little girl a few years younger than himsel his curiosity is increased.
Philip gets to know the girl, and gives her a name. Soon, they are fast friends—and then they save the daughter of Lord Morgan. At the same time, Philip is trying to learn a trade, even though the man he is apprenticed to won’t let him do much. Will it ever be possible for the Ge-sceaft to become a part of village society, or will Philip end up finding himself ostracized as well?
There is a lot to like about this story. There are pirates and dragons, castles and caves, and a boy coming to the rescue of a girl. It was frustrating to not learn her secret before the end of this book, but maybe if I read the next one all will be made clear! I enjoyed the way the Gospel was presented, and liked the advice Philip was given, “Learning anything is always worthwhile—even mundane tasks that don’t seem related to your trade.” This would be a great read-aloud story for the family!
Read Aloud—Ages 8 – 12, 10 – 13, Family Read Alouds
Reading Independently—Ages 12 – 15, 15 and Above, Adults
Links to buy Shadows & Secrets:
AbeBooks: View Choices on AbeBooks.com
Book Depository: Paperback
Keywords: England, Family Read-alouds, Fantasy, Middle Ages