Holly longs to have an adventure during her family's trip to England. The gift of an iron key opens the way into a dangerous world where magic is forbidden, and she discovers her hidden powers!
If her brother Ben hadn't been playing his video games, the eleven-year-old wouldn't have walked into the forest by herself, hearing that humming, finding a tree with a keyhole in it, a keyhole that just fits the key given to her by the cottage caretaker... and she wouldn't have seen ghosts in the ruined castle, ghosts of Ben and neighbor Everett being threatened by swordsmen!
A key to a magic place? Ben and Everett go along with Holly to the keyhole-oak, and the trio falls into the Middle Ages! (good thing Ben has his inhaler) Except none of the history books they'd read ever mentioned talking cats or centaurs...
This particular past has many types of magical creatures, all sentenced to death by the non-magical King and his wicked adviser. By using the key to travel here, Holly has proved that she is a most-magical Adept, perhaps the one prophesied to restore magic to balance the world!
Why don't the griffins and shapeshifters believe that she's just a girl?
How can she prove to the King that she's not a magical threat?
Can she harness her magic in time to rescue Ben and Everett from certain death?
"Only the strong of heart take the circular path, for to return from whence you came brings the ending back to the beginning." First in a five-volume series, The Key and the Flame takes readers from a boring US suburb to a magical English forest where friendship and courage are tested to the limits.
Recommended by: Katy Manck, Librarian-at-Large (retired academic/corporate/school librarian), Gilmer, Texas, USA – blogging young adult books beyond the bestsellers at http://BooksYALove.com