________________ CM . . . . Volume XV Number 4 . . . . October 10, 2008


The Prism Blade. (Passage to Mythrin 2).

Patricia Bow.
Toronto, ON: Boardwalk/Dundurn, 2008.
267 pp., pbk., $12.99.
ISBN 978-1-55002-809-6.

Grades 5-9 / Ages 10-14.

Review by Libby McKeever.

*** /4


The dragon flew as far as the tangled lands before she allowed herself to sink. Not back to Sissarion, not like this. There were rivals who would smile at her weakness. At least one would snatch at the chance. He would not win, of course, but she wanted no strife, not just now.

     Here. This was a good place. Deep in a gully, a dry river bed, where the cliff leaned out at the tip and screened her from the sky. The smooth red stones still gave back the sun’s heat. She crawled under the overhang and crouched. She wrapped her wings around her body.

     There was pain. That could be endured. But this metal thing in her armpit, that must come out. She clenched a clawed fist around the shaft and pulled, hard and quick.

     Then she studied the thing. A metal stick with a barbed head meant to rip flesh. Demon work for sure. Her blood had pitted and blackened the metal, but not badly enough. It could be used again, if found. She tossed it onto the rocks outside the overhang and exhaled fire. The bolt glowed red, twisted, and fell into bits. Good!

     Now, sleep. Heal. But not too long. Something must be done about these two-legged invaders, these ardini. Especially the small pale one, with her head full of painful light. She meant murder, that one. Wrong to call them demons, even so. Must remember that. They were human. They were like Amelia.

     Amelia. Amelia, where... The dragon dreamed.

In Patricia Bow’s previous book, The Ruby Kingdom, we met Amelia Hammer who with her cousin Simon and his friend Ike discovered a gate to the amazing world of Mythrin. They befriended Mara, the young ruler of Mythrin’s population of shape-shifting dragons, and helped her defeat a threat to her throne. In The Prism Blade, we return to the small Ontario town where Simon and Ike are hoping that Amelia will join them in the annual Dunstone and Area Weird Games (DAWG), but when Mara is injured, she transfers her thoughts into Amelia’s dreams and the trio is relegated into the fight for survival. 

     The Casseri, a group of human exiles, have entered Mythrin searching for the Prism Blade, a treasure that legend describes as the ultimate weapon. The dragons and the Casseri are both searching for the Prism Blade in an effort to save their races from extinction. Amelia is relegated to the care of Ty, a teenage dragon who, like Amy, is courageous but a little foolhardy in his brave attempts to make things right.

     Amelia, Simon, and Ike now need to tackle a crisis when they discover that the Prism Blade has been hidden in Dunstone for millennia and has been, in fact, an integral part of the DAWG games for years. Amelia teams up with Ty and Simon with Ike when they realize that, to save Mara, they need to win the Weird Games.

     The Prism Blade is the second book in the “Passage to Mythrin” series. Bow is currently working the third book in the series, The Starry Window. Bow has written several mystery titles in German, short stories and The Bone Flute, a fantasy which was nominated for the 2006 Ontario Library Association’s Silver Birch Award in 2006 and the Red Cedar Award in 2007.


Libby McKeever is the Youth Services Coordinator at Whistler Public Library in Whistler, BC.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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