For Darwen life has been turned upside down and it is not getting any easier. Following the death of his parents, he finds himself moved to Atlanta Georgia, to live with his aunt. For a young boy from a small town in northern England this is a huge change and going to an upmarket private school, where they mock his accent, does not help. Then one day he stumbles across a weird mirror shop in the local shopping mall and meets the owner, Mr Peregrine. What follows takes Darwen to a magical parallel world where evil forces are trying to break through to our own. With the help of two new friends he must battle to save our world.
This is an imaginative and well plotted book. Like many books dealing with magic it is really about the fight between good and evil, but it is also very much about being different, and finding your own place in the world. Darwen is being forced, although not deliberately, to change his whole personality; it is only when he is allowed to be himself, such as in the football match, that he is able to show his skills and true potential. He is also coming to terms with his parents’ deaths and only towards the end of the story does he start accepting this.
The idea of using mirrors to travel between worlds has been with us since Lewis Carroll, but this gives a fairly original twist to the concept. This is the first in a series of books and no doubt Darwen will continue to grow as a character as the series goes on. I look forward to the next offering and to the adventures it will bring.