Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Stone of Destiny-Jim Ware

The Stone of Destiny
Jim Ware
David C. Cook, Mar 1 2011, $14.99
ISBN: 9781434764645

In St. Halistan at Santa Piedra Middle School student Morgan Izzak diligently studies his father’s ancient tomes on the Philosopher’s Stone and visits Madame Medea for help. That is when he is not eluding bullies at school and failing to properly navigate the convoluted social caste system. With his mother Mavis suffering form cancer, Morgan hopes to find the magical stone his dad references and use it to cure his mom.

His only friend Eny Ariello listens to Morgan’s desperation to find the Philosopher’s Stone, but offers a different idea. Eny believes the Irish Stone of Destiny is in their town. The two middle school kids begin a quest to find that stone, but rivals want the Irish Stone of Destiny too. As nasty giants and other evil beasts chase them, Morgan betrays his BFF and apparently lost the Irish Stone of Destiny too.

This is a fabulous parable fantasy in which the young hero learns from his mistakes, which pile on one after another, to keep the faith. Morgan turns to magic ignoring medicine and God in his quest for a miracle. He will understand that for the Grace of God, his errors sum into a goodness though he is filled with remorse especially with his betrayal and his inability to find the magical elixir; in fact he seems to make things worse for everyone though he keeps trying. Readers will enjoy his escapades as he searches for a magical cure for his dying mom, who ironically is a true believer.

Harriet Klausner

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