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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Did you know that there is a power in love and friendship, a healing power? Eli, the moon elf, must go on a mystical, magical journey to find herself and this power of love and friendship. Her best friend, Luna’s baby, has turned into hard rock candy. It’s a curse that only the terrifying and legendary Hallowshine dragon can break. But they’re running out of time, and each step in this amazing journey only leads them in another challenging direction. They must traverse lands full of unicorns, fairies, and magical rainbows and ignore the hypnotic sound of clocks ticking out of sync in the abyss of time. It’s a fascinating journey, a frightening one, but their friendship carries them on.
Eve Cabanel’s picture book story, Eli and The Mystery of the Hallowshine Dragon, is a story about love and friendship. Filled with everything one would expect in a good fantasy – dragons, fairies, unicorns, and lots of magic – the plot is an epic adventure of discovery, a quest of sorts. The language is simple to help young readers read and follow along. The illustrations are spectacular, almost magical in themselves, and they certainly add another dimension to the story. The characters are well developed, and some of the events are a little comical, like Grandpa Numa’s hocus pocus spell to find the right book. It flies off the shelf, landing on his head. There is a touch of mystery to the story, too, as the two friends learn a little bit more about the Hallowshine dragon with each magical encounter along their journey. The key message is about the power of love and friendship, and this is beautifully and effectively portrayed. Lovely story.