Fourteen-year-old Beck Conleth is living a quiet life in the seaside town of Queen's Weather when his grandmother sends him on a journey to Ulfwood to retrieve his father's bones and a family skean (dagger). After reaching Ulfwood, Beck discovers the skean is magical, and that it answers only to him. Soon the enchanted skean and its owner attract the attention of dark mages, goblins, and worse. Helped on his journey home by Wisewomen, warriors, shape-shifters, and the other good folk of Lifthrasir, Beck faces death, dangers, and the theft of his skean.
Accompanied by his best friend, Beck stows away on a ship, takes back his skean, befriends a dragon, and escapes with a troop of thieves. After reaching a dock in West Arnora, the company heads for the fortress of Ravens Haunt. As Beck and his companions face a hideous Skullsoul and an army of ogerhunches, he realizes there is a developing confrontation between good and evil, and he and his enchanted skean have a role to play.
Born in the Year of the Dragon, Vonnie Winslow Crist has had a life-long interest in reading, writing, art, myth, fairytales, folklore, and legends. Having been a night person since infancy, she is also quite fond of stars, moonlight, forests, owls, and other creatures of the darkness.
After attending Perry Hall Elementary, Parkville Junior High, and Perry Hall High, she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Art Education from Towson University. She married, then raised three children, did freelance illustrating and writing, and taught poetry for the Maryland State Arts Council’s Artists in Education Program. Thirty years after graduating from Towson, she returned to her alma mater and earned a Masters ... (more)