Check out yesterday's guest post with author R. R. Russell
on the unicorns in WONDER LIGHT!
Most children love unicorns. I know I did (I blame My Little Pony). I loved reading horse-themed books growing up, and would have loved a book for older kids centered around unicorns. There's certainly an audience for WONDER LIGHT: Unicorns of the Mist. There are unicorns, but not quite like any you've encountered before. There's also mystery and intrigue, since the island may or may not be haunted. Certainly something for everyone!
Twig arrives on Lonehorn Island feeling alone and miserable. She's to live out the next year with the Murley family and other troubled girls after an incident that occurred back home. At first, she's scared of the horse she's assigned and not thrilled with the prospect of doing chores such as mucking out his stall. She's also scared by the surrounding woods. On the way onto the island, she saw a ghost boy lurking in the mist. One night, she can't sleep, and she sees him again. And he's dropped off a horse about to go into labor. Twig later finds out the truth about the boy, the unicorn masquerading as a horse, and so much more. Her life will never be the same again, especially when she finds out that the fate of the island and its mysterious unicorns may be in her hands.
Russell builds a great environment as a safe haven for troubled girls. The island and its inhabitants are just what Twig needs to come out of her shell and start blossoming in a way she couldn't in the past. Twig's home life was far from perfect, and it's easy to sympathize with her. The unicorn lore found in WONDER LIGHT is intriguing and unique. They aren't the magical beings everyone thinks them to be, and they're also more wild and vicious than they appear. This is definitely a fantasy novel for older children who want more than the traditional unicorns they grew up with, but still covet the whimsy of fantasy they bring to a story. Readers will want to be in Twig's shoes, experiencing much of her adventure first-hand.