The Door in the Forest

The Door in the Forestby Roderick Townley

245 pages of mysterious adventure

A small town, unique neighbors, superstitious mysteries (possibly magic?), surprise arrivals and impending war meet in A Door In the Forest.  These things mix together to bring up questions about the importance of truth – how deep does it go, how long does it last?

In the middle of the river is a lush, emerald green island. Some say it’s enchanted.  All say it is beautiful, though it seems that no one can get there.  First you have for push through thorn bushes to reach the river.  Then you have to find a way beyond the quicksand and if you do get to the water’s edge, you have to make sure you’re not bitten by the poisonous, white-headed water snakes. Summer is here so there is more time for Daniel and Wes to notice things at the store and around town:  the heron on the shore, the  “Uncertainties” continuing in the city, that refugees seem more common and Emily.

Silent, and left behind at the Crowley’s store, it is Daniel who runs out to the manse to tell her of her granddaughter’s arrival. Bridey Byrdsong might be a witch, or she might just be an eccentric old woman, Daniel doesn’t know for sure, but he likes her all right.  Daniel doesn’t have many friends.  It’s not that people don’t like him.  They just don’t trust him. Daniel can’t tell a lie.  It makes him physically ill to even think about it.  Sometimes he desperately wishes he could, or at least not tell the whole truth, but he can’t.  He’s left out a lot because he can’t be trusted to keep a secret.  Bridey is one person that doesn’t seem to mind. She likes Daniel well enough too.

Almost as soon as Emily arrives Captain Sloper and the soldiers arrive.  They are going to test their new tank in the fields.  They move into the homes and begin to take over while they wait for reinforcements to join them.  Things start missing from homes.  The best food is eaten. The most comfortable beds are taken and every place is searched.  Captain Sloper goes everywhere with Daniel because he is sure to hear the whole truth with him there.

While Daniel can’t lie he suspects that Captain Sloper is not what he claims. The coincidence of the soldiers’ arrival with Emily is too strong.  What do the soldiers really want?  Are they fighting a noble cause?  What about the map, the pearl necklace, the secret symbols and signs…  Some secrets are meant to share, while others are meant to keep.  Read A Door in the Forest to discover how truth and secrets mix together.  What would you tell?

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