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The Owl Wrangler--A Synopsis

The Owl Wrangler is a story about a society that worships truth. Their elders teach "...if it's not in The Book of Truth, then it can't be true." The story follows Hisbil as he discovers his own truth about his magic and his place in the clan of forest elves. Along the way he uncovers deceit, power-hungry politicians and a wizard that would plunder their magic kept secret for millennia.

Itís a simpler time before or after electricity and gunpowder. Itís a time of iron swords and forest elves called Seldith living close to the earth. And itís a time of magicóof those who wield it and those who seek it. The Owl Wrangler is a coming of age story where an only son is forced to choose between living alone in disgrace or accepting a perilous duty passed down from his father. Itís a story of heroic rescues and siblings risking their lives for clan, family and survival in a dangerous world of giant humans and voracious forest predators. Itís a story of human men and Seldith elves poisoned by power, greed and vengeance and how courage, honesty and newly awakened magic overcome these forces.

Gollsaer is a wily yet reclusive forest creature no taller than a mushroom. Heís an owl wrangler. Itís his inherited duty, his herditas to venture out into the forest and use a secret spell to reverse an ancient curse that returns the gift of speech to wild creatures. To awaken an owl, the wrangler must touch the owl and cast a spell with a tiny wooden wandóusually while he is being carried off to be devoured. If the spell works, the owl can speak and understand; at which point, the wrangler convinces the owl to forgo eating its benefactor. If something goes amiss, the wrangler rarely survives. There is no Seldith herditas more dangerous.

When Gollsaer does not return from an owl hunt, the Seldith Council of Truth gives his son Hisbil the dire choices of exile or taking up his fatherís herditas. The Council strives to placate the human Lord Lensmacher who accommodates their settlement on his estate in exchange for converted owls. Most Council members steadfastly refuse to accept that their uman benefactor is actually the tortured wizard Tovenaar conniving to uncover their secrets.

Kasie is Hisbilís distant cousin who is learning to wield the power of insight. She helps Hisbil search the woods to locate his fatherís wand and finds his heart along the way. As they return, she confides that Hisbil neednít accept his fatherís perilous herditasóhe has another choice. Before she can explain, sheís carried off by an uman and Hisbil is powerless to stop it.

Anasta is Hisbilís self-centered sister who puts herself in deadly peril when a pair of prowling cats breaks through the village defenses. Acting quickly to rescue her, Hisbil sees no alternative but to attempt to use his fatherís wand and magic. He manages to convert one of the cats, mounts it and leads the other cat away from the village with his sister at his back holding on for dear life. Their long journey home brings them both to the brink of death, closer to each other and crystallizes their roles in the fabric of the Seldith community and the outside world.

Weiger has already felt the wrath of the Council of Truth and tries to survive on his own as an exile. By a chance he meets Douglas, a talking mouse. At one time Douglas was a man, a carpenter charged to restore Tovenaarís dilapidated castle. Uncovering a secret that exposes the castle dungeons, Douglas is transfigured into a mouse by Tovenaar as he is released from captivity.  Douglas tells Weiger that he escaped with eight tiny volumes which Weiger recognizes as a priceless treasureóthe Sacred Books of Truth. While Weiger considers selling them to the highest bidder, Douglas insists they must be used to transform him back to his life as man, husband and father. The sacred books lead Weiger and Douglas back to the castle to uncover the retransformation spell.

 

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Copyright © 2013 William R. Vaughn All Rights Reserved
Last modified: 10/29/2013