Title: Guardians of Ga'hoole: The Journey.
Author: Kathryn Lasky.
Genre: Fiction, animals, YA, adventure, fantasy.
Publication Date: 2003.
Summary: Soren, Gylfie, Twilight, and Digger travel to the Great Ga'Hoole Tree, a mythical place where an order of owls rises each night to perform noble deeds, seeking help to fight the evil they discovered in the owl world. After a harrowing journey, they arrive at the Great Ga'Hoole Tree and learn they will need to stay to receive training from the Ga'Hoolian elders. During his time at the Great Ga'Hoole Tree, Soren finds a great mentor is reunited with his beloved sister.
My rating: 9/10
♥ "I am a blind snake, but who says I cannot see as much as you?" And then she swung her head sharply toward the female Masked Owl, who seemed startled, and it did appear indeed as if Mrs. Plithiver was looking directly at her with her two small eye dents. "Who says I cannot see? To see with eyes is so ordinary. I see with my whole body - my skin, my bones, my coiling spine. And between the slow beats of my very slow heart, I sense the world here and beyond. I know the Yonder. Oh, yes. I have known it even before I ever flew in it. But before that day did I say it did not exist? What a fool you would have called me, milady, had I said your sky does not exist because I cannot see nor can I fly. And what a fool you are to believe that Hoolemere does not exist.
"Well, I never!" gasped the Masked Owl. She looked at her mate in astonishment. "She called me a fool!"
But Mrs. Plithiver continued. "Sky does not exist merely in the wings of birds, an impulse in their feathers and blood and bone. Sky becomes the Yonder for all creatures, to know in the deepest ways. And when the Yonder calls, it speaks to all of us, be it sky, be it Hoolemere, be it heaven or glaumora." Glaumora was the special heaven where the souls of owls went. "So perhaps," Mrs. Plithiver continued, "there are some who need to lose their eyes to discover their sight."
♥ "It's time for me to fly point again, Soren."
Soren knew he was right. The snowflakes had evaporated into a thick dense fog. The world, the water below, was shrouded in mist. It was time for the vision of Twilight - that time Twilight had spoken about when Soren and Gylfie had first met him, that time that had given Twilight his name, when boundaries become dim and shapes begin to melt away. It was the time for the Great Gray Owl, who lived on the edges and saw invisible connections, the joinings in a world that had turned foggy and confusing. Maybe Twilight could find the current again.
♥ "It takes time, of which I think you have an abundance. It takes patience - and that, I am not sure how much you have and, most important, it takes dedication and that, young'un, is found both in the heart and the gizzard. The nobility of the owls you see here in the parliament has not simply been given, nor has it been earned through courageous acts. Indeed, nobility is not always found in the flash of battle claws or flying through the embered wakes of firestorms, or even in making strong the weak, mending the broken, vanquishing the proud, or making powerless those who abuse the frail."
Soren's gizzard grew quiet as Boron spoke. "It is also found in the resolute heart, the gizzard that can withstand the temptations of false dreams, the mind that has the imagination to comprehend another's pain, as I think one young owl did tonight when he sat by the little Pygmy Owl with quiet understanding of her loss of tree, nest, family, and egg. It is all of this that ultimately confers nobility and makes the Guardians of Ga'Hoole rise in the night with hearts sublime." Boron paused and looked at the other three owls. "And so as I said when you arrived, one journey has ended and now another starts. On the night of the morrow your training shall begin."