The Valley of the Wolves

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Overview

Dana attends a school of magic with only one other student. She has a great love only she can see. And only she can unravel these mysteries and become mistress of the Valley of the Wolves.

Ever since Dana was a little girl, Kai has been her best friend and constant companion--even though she's the only one who can see him. Then the mysterious Maestro comes to her farm and offers her the opportunity of a lifetime: the chance to study sorcery in ...

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Overview

Dana attends a school of magic with only one other student. She has a great love only she can see. And only she can unravel these mysteries and become mistress of the Valley of the Wolves.

Ever since Dana was a little girl, Kai has been her best friend and constant companion--even though she's the only one who can see him. Then the mysterious Maestro comes to her farm and offers her the opportunity of a lifetime: the chance to study sorcery in the Valley of the Wolves. And Dana knows she must go, for the Maestro can see Kai too....
At age 27, Laura Gallego Garcia is already Spain's answer to J. K. Rowling, creating fantasies rich with magic and meaning. This is her most popular novel, a book for every kid who's ever felt set apart and everyone who finds a place all their own.

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Editorial Reviews

Brandon Schwarz
Ever since Dana was six, her best friend has been a boy named Kai. The only problem is that Dana is the only one who can see him. Everyone in the town knows of Dana's "imaginary friend" and believes she must be crazy and a witch. When a mystical man named Maestro adopts Dana as an apprentice and takes her to Maestro's magic Tower in the Valley of the Wolves, Dana begins to wonder if she really is a witch. With the help of Kai, Dana must survive the Tower and the Valley of the Wolves, while trying to discover what the power of magic is really all about. Written when Garcia was only 20, The Valley of the Wolves is the story of a young girl coming of age and realizing her full potential. Garcia borrows different elements of fantasy and the supernatural to create a truly believable world.
VOYA
In a peasant family with many siblings, as long as she does her chores, Dana does not stand out-until she mentions Kai, the boy only Dana can see (and hear), and then her family thinks she is crazy. When a stranger offers to let Dana study with him far away at his school, promising to provide for her family and to bring Kai along as well, she jumps at the chance for adventure and learning. The stranger is the Maestro of the Tower, who trains apprentices in magic. Dana becomes his star pupil. She learns quickly, in spite of the ongoing mystery of Kai's identity and the supernatural wolves that surround the Tower each night. With its neat prose and tightly woven story line, this novel makes for a quick read. The atmosphere and mood are rich, the setting brooding. Dana is a compelling, three-dimensional character-a powerful sixteen-year-old witch with all the struggles between selfish pursuits and selfless sacrifice. Her particular gifts as a Kin-shannay (communicating with the dead) may remind some readers of Garth Nix's Sabriel. Having Kai, a spirit who died hundreds of years before, play a key role in the plot and capture Dana's heart is a clever twist. A few plot turns are too easily predicted but should not prevent fantasy readers from enjoying this early novel by the award-winning author of The Legend of the Wandering King (Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic, 2005). VOYA CODES: 4Q 4P M J S (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; Broad general YA appeal; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2006, Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic, 256p., Ages 11 to 18.
—Melissa Moore
School Library Journal
Gr 6-9-Dana is isolated from others in her farm community because she sees and converses with an invisible boy named Kai. Her otherwise ordinary life is disrupted by the arrival of a gentleman who refers to himself as Maestro. He senses the girl's potential and takes her from her home to the Tower where he lives to train her in sorcery. The Maestro's rules are simple: she must never be in the forest after dark as she will be set upon by wolves, and she must never disobey him. Dana soon discovers that Kai (who has accompanied her) is not the only invisible person with whom she can communicate. To understand this mystery, she braves the wolves and risks the magus's anger by going into the woods-equipped with spells-in search of a unicorn. Dana's progression from a frightened farm girl into a courageous sorceress is superficially delineated. The initially benevolent Maestro is a one-dimensional figure who is abruptly revealed to be a murderous and power-hungry villain. While the story line is engaging, the novel is not entirely fleshed out and it is at best an additional purchase.-Heather M. Lisowski, Philip S. Miller Library, Castle Rock, CO Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Beautiful elves, loyal dwarves, secret unicorns and vengeful ghosts pepper this colorful but hollow coming-of-age fairytale. Dana is born on a dark and stormy night, when fierce winds pelt her tiny farmhouse, and the midwife sees sparks in her sapphire eyes. She grows up with only one friend, Kai, whom no one else can see-except a mysterious stranger, who arrives in Dana's drought-plagued village and buys her from her loving parents. Dana becomes a magician's apprentice in a remote tower surrounded by vicious wolves. Ambitious, Dana absorbs herself in her education, spending less and less time with Kai. If their friendship suffers a little, isn't that a fair price to pay for gaining a magician's golden tunic? Dana's coming-of-age quest is somewhat intriguing, but she herself is unfortunately flat. Like the similarly stock characters who people this world, she is a collection of traits rather than a character: born with power; budding sexuality; forced to choose between loyalty and ambition. Nonetheless, though shallow as a novel, Dana's story makes a sweet fairytale. (Fantasy. 9-12)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780439585538
  • Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 4/1/2006
  • Edition description: Translatio
  • Pages: 336
  • Age range: 9 - 12 Years
  • Lexile: 770L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 8 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2006

    Valley of the Wolves

    this book can touch your heart.i got it at 10:00 in the morning and finished it at 9:00 that night!but i stop now and talk about the book.this book is about a girl named dana who meets a boy named kai and become fast friends.kai longs for adventure and can tell count less story's but there is one thing different about him when dana try's to touch him but her hand can go right though him!then one day a mysterious man comes and offers dana a chance to study magic.then questions come how can fernis [a student a the tower] conterol the wolves of the valley?what is kai true nature?and if you read this book then the same questions will come to you.and like eli said[a reviewer]said anyone who has an imaginary will love this book or any true book lover

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 30, 2006

    Absolutely outstanding!

    I picked this book up late, around ten one night and could barely put it down. I finished the book in a span of twelve hours, hardly putting it down but for sleeping and the other necessitys of life. The book really describs how a outcast, or in other words a loner feels and how well they can cop with things, but the daunt of feeling alone and useless and how truly loyal some one like that could be. The book sings a song of sacrifice, power, betrayal, revenge and lover all tangled together and enough room to leave you thinking, Wow... that was awesome! I loved this book and can't wait to buy it for myself for the one I read was my libraries. I recommend this book to anyone who feels like an imaginary friend is their only friend, or anyone who just wants a good book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 27, 2006

    Valley of the Wolves

    I LOVE THIS BOOK!!!When i got this book i finished it in one day.Its about a girl named Dana and a spirt named Kai.If you love magic, adventure, mystery, and love then you'll love this book.

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