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Book 3 - The Dark is Rising Sequence
By Susan Cooper

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Book 3 - The Dark is Rising Sequence
By Susan Cooper
Thorndike Press - Large Print (2001)
ISBN: 0-7862-2923-3
Genre: Young Adult - Fantasy

Reviewed by Rochelle Caviness - August 19, 2002

We first met Jane Drew in the novel, Over Sea, Under Stone when she helped her brothers, Simon and Barney, find the grail from King Arthur's time. In this book by Susan Cooper, Greenwitch, Jane takes center stage, with much of the story's plot revolving around her and the Greenwitch. The Greenwitch is a creature made from twigs, branches, and blossoms by the local women in Trewissick, a fishing village in Cornwall, England. Once this wooden effigy is finished, legend holds that anyone who touches and makes a wish, will have that wish come true.

While again visiting with her great-uncle Merriman, in Cornwall, Jane is invited to watch the local women as they make their Greenwitch. When it comes time to make her wish, she wishes that the Greenwitch could find happiness. Little did Jane realize at the time, but the Greenwitch heard her make her wish! The Greenwitch is part of the Wild Magic that stands outside the conflict between the Light and the Dark. As such, it operates upon its own set of rule, and within the realm of the Wild Magic, the Greenwitch has life. Unbeknownst to everyone, this wish is to have major repercussions as the Drew children are caught up in a new quest. And, this time they find that their uncle Merriman has arranged for Will Stanton, the youngest of the Old Ones, to help them out.

What has brought this group of intrepid adventurers together is that the Grail, which the Drews recovered in Over Sea, Under Stone, has been stolen from the British Museum. It had been placed in the museum as a form of safe keeping until it was needed, because without the correct code, no one could decipher the secret message engraved on the cup. Without the code, the cup was worthless, in the greater scheme of things, so the Light thought that the Dark would leave it alone until the code was found - they were wrong. With the aid of Will and Merriman, the Drews must recover the grail from the Dark forces that stole it, and if possible, decipher the secret message engraved on the cup.

This short book is rich in texture, and is more tension filled than the first two books in the series. This tension is created by the unease that the Drews feel by having Will thrust into their mists, and by the dangerous events that transpire throughout this book. If you've not read the first two books in this series, Over Sea, Under Stone and The Dark is Rising, you may find that story hard to follow. And be forewarned, you'll want to have the forth book in this series, The Grey King handy so that you can continue, straight away, with the next installment of legendary series.

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