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The Floating Island (Lost Journals of Ven Polypheme)by Elizabeth Haydon
Synopses & Reviews
Long ago, in the Second Age of history, a young Nain explorer by the name of Ven Polypheme traveled much of the known and unknown world, recording his adventures. Recently discovered by archaeologists, a few fragments of his original journals are reproduced in this book. Great care has been taken to reconstruct the parts of the journal that did not survive, so that a whole story can be told...
Charles Magnus Ven Polypheme--known as Ven--is the youngest son of a long line of famous shipwrights. He dreams not of building ships, but of sailing them to far-off lands where magic thrives. Ven gets his chance when he is chosen to direct the Inspection of his family's latest ship--and sets sail on the journey of a lifetime.
Attacked by fire pirates, lost at sea and near death, Ven is rescued by a passing ship on its way to the Island of Serendair. Thankful to be alive, little does Ven know that the pirate attack--and his subsequent rescue--may not have been an accident. Shadowy figures are hunting for the famed Floating Island, the only source of the mystical Water of Life. They think Ven can lead them to this treasure, and will stop at nothing to get it--even murder.
In a narrative that alternates entries from his journals and drawings from his sketchbooks, Ven begins the famous chronicles of his exciting and exotic adventures--adventures that would later earn him renown as the author of The Book of All Human Knowledge and All the World's Magic.
"The sometimes exciting, sometimes ponderous first volume in Haydon's the Lost Journals of Ven Polypheme series mixes narrative with 'lost journal' entries to tell the story of Ven, the youngest of 13 children in a Nain family. The Nain are a race that lives four times longer than humans. Ven, whose family is renowned for its ship-building prowess, is giving one of their boats a pre-sale inspection when it comes under a vicious attack from the Fire Pirates. After a courageous and resourceful retaliation — one which nonetheless leaves Ven unconscious — he is rescued by a mermaid-like creature and ends up aboard a ship of friendly adventurers. From there it's a kitchen sink's worth of fantasy/adventure encounters, from a talking cat to mysterious puzzle boxes to the undead. Most interesting is the island of the title, 'a ship of sorts' connected to the world's creation story, 'a very old place, a magical place.' Haydon spins a story both warm and thrilling. The book's alternating-narrative structure, however, is less successful. Ven's entries are infrequent enough that they feel like more of an interruption in the story's flow than part and parcel of it. But strong box office interest in pirates and all things nautical bodes well for this title. Final artwork not seen by PW. Ages 10-up. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"A delightful epic fantasy." Booklist
"We never quite know where the story is going. But it is exciting and it leaves us eager for the next book....On the whole, a good read." Children's Literature
The Floating Island, the first volume in Elizabeth Haydons critically-acclaimed The Lost Journals of Ven Polypheme series for middle grade readers, is now available with a stunning new coverCharles Magnus Ven Polypheme—known as Ven—is the youngest son of a long line of famous shipwrights. He dreams not of building ships, but of sailing them to far-off lands where magic thrives. Ven gets his chance when he is chosen to direct the Inspection of his familys latest ship—and sets sail on the journey of a lifetime.
Attacked by fire pirates, lost at sea and near death, Ven is rescued by a passing ship on its way to the Island of Serendair. Thankful to be alive, little does Ven know that the pirate attack—and his subsequent rescue—may not have been an accident. Shadowy figures are hunting for the famed Floating Island, the only source of the mystical Water of Life. They think Ven can lead them to this treasure and will stop at nothing to get it—even murder….
About the Author
A harpist and madrigal singer, Elizabeth Haydon lives on the East Coast with her husband and three children, where she is writing fantasy novels for both adults and children.
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