Title: Guardians of Ga'Hoole: The Outcast.
Author: Kathryn Lasky.
Genre: Fiction, children's lit, YA, fantasy, adventure, animals.
Publication Date: September 1, 2005.
Summary: To prove his goodness, young Nyroc will renounce his name, his mother, and his inheritance to seek the holiest of relics from The Beyond the Beyond. Nyroc has exiled himself from the Pure Ones. He flies alone, feared and despised by those who know him as Kludd's son, hunted by those whose despotism he has rejected, and haunted by ghostly creatures conjured by Nyra to lure him back to the Pure Ones. He yearns for a place he only half believes in - the great tree - and an uncle - the near-mythic Soren - who might be a true father to him. Yet he cannot approach the tree while the rumor of evil clings to him. To prove his worth, Nyroc will fly to The Beyond the Beyond seeking the legendary Relic - a talisman of his own.
My rating: 7.5/10.
♥ What is to become of me? Where shall I go? Where shall I find happiness? Perhaps happiness is too much to ask for. Peace. Yes, peace will do.
♥ "Only fools pretend not to be afraid."
♥ "Glauxspeed!" Streak called out and Zan signaled. The two flying snakes had been joined now by two other snakes, and the four of them wrote across the silver of the full-shine moon:
Glauxspeed CorynAnd to think, Glaux is not even the spirit of their kind. How good of them to wish me well in the name of a spirit that is not theirs.
♥ He could feel now the swish of the liquid in the egg and hear the murmurs of the young heart. How precious these feelings and sounds were. How precious this life was. To think that it could have been destroyed by the Pure Ones. Surely, it would have been as good as destroyed even if it had hatched, because to be born into such a despicable world and nurtured by such vile creatures was the same as death.
He pumped his wings harder against the wind. It was amazing how quickly he had come to love this egg and, with that wonder, Coryn realized something else: To love something can often mean to give it up, to release it to where it truly belongs. Was life always going to be this way for him? Coryn wondered. He had loved Phillip and he had loved Mist and Zan and Streak and the lovely green snakes and yet he was forced to part with them all.
♥ "And because you befriended me, they now think it is my turn to go there, to leave the clan, and join the gnaw wolves who guard the ember."
"But it is a great honor, isn't it?" Coryn asked.
"Honors are lonely things. I would much rather have friends than honors."
♥ What was she saying? Why were owls and creatures always speaking to him in riddles? Why was it always scraps he got and never the whole answer?
There is no such thing as a whole answer, Coryn.
Is there truth?
One creature's truth is another's lie.
But can't I believe in anything?
There. I just gave you a whole answer, as you call it.
But it was just one word.
And you are just one owl.
♥ They spent many hours in the library together poring over books, and their passion for books had slowly turned into a passion for each other.
♥ "No, I am honored. You have done whats no other owl could imagine doing. More miraculous even than retrieving the Ember of Hoole."
"You who were born into evil found good. You who were raised in tyranny sought equality. You who were schooled in brutality learned only mercy. You who were taught the dishonorable discovered honor. You who were nurtured on the poison of the most ignoble owls in the world are most noble. You are my nephew and my king."
♥ And all the owls of the great tree that night believed, as well. They believed that there were many kinds of truths, those of science that could be proven through the brain, and those of legends that could come true in the hearts and gizzards of all owls if they only believed.
"I am here," Coryn said in the great hollow that evening, "because there are owls who still believe in legends and the truths that can be found in legends, the truths of courage and loyalty, of goodness and mercy. My uncle repeated the legends many years ago when he was a captive in St. Aggie's. It saved him and my aunt Gylfie, if I may call you that." He turned to the little Elf Owl, and she nodded happily. "It saved them from moon blinking. It saved them from the destruction of the moon-blaze chamber. Where there are legends, there can be hope. Where there are legends, there can be dreams of knightly owls, from a kingdom called Ga'Hoole, who will rise each night into the blackness and perform noble deeds. Owls who speak no words but true ones. Owls whose only purpose is to right all wrongs, to make strong the weak, mend the broken, vanquish the proud, and make powerless those who abuse the frail. With hearts sublime, they take flight... And I, dear Guardians, am an owl who was broken and powerless and weak, and outcast. Glaux bless you for your belief in legends."