In these four books, young protagonists (and readers) discover that their ordinary worlds may offer more magic than it seems. Fiona McConville, the heroine of The Secret of the Ron Mor Skerry, probes the mythological mysteries of her small town in Scotland’s Western Isles. Rosalie K. Fry’s vivid tale of folklore and family history became the basis for John Sayles’s classic 1994 film The Secret of Roan Inish. In Anna Starobinets’s Catlantis, we meet Baguette, a seemingly ordinary housecat. His only aim in life is to marry Purriana—that is, until a visit to the oracle reveals his lofty heritage, time-traveling abilities, and duty to all of cat-kind.
In Beyond the Pawpaw Trees Anna Lavinia and her cat, Strawberry, journey to a place where buttercups bloom pink and the laws of gravity don’t always apply. Palmer Brown takes us on a tour through a land as strange and wonderful as Oz, filled with characters as delightfully batty as any in Alice’s looking glass. London hasn’t been kind to lonely young Peter in Paul Gallico’s The Abandoned. But after a strange accident endows him with fur, whiskers, and claws, he finally finds a friend. Jennie, a savvy stray, schools Peter in the ways of cats (“When in doubt, wash”), and in the massive maze of London, the two try to find a place to call home.
For ages 8–12