John Schoffstall


NPR Best Books of the Year

In the world in which Lizbet Lenz lives, the sun still goes around the earth, God speaks directly to his worshippers, goblins haunt every cellar and witches lurk in the forests. Disaster strikes when Lizbet's father Gerhard, a charming scoundrel, is thrown into a dungeon by the tyrant Hengest Wolftrow. To free him, Lizbet must cross the Montagnes du Monde, globe-girdling mountains that reach to the sky, a journey no one has ever survived, and retrieve a mysterious book.

Lizbet is desperate, and the only one who can help her is the unpleasant and sarcastic witch girl Strix. As the two girls journey through the mountains and into the lands of wonder beyond, on the run from goblins, powerful witches, and human criminals, Lizbet discovers, to her horror, that Strix's magic is turning Lizbet into a witch, too. Meanwhile, a revolution in Heaven is brewing.
336 printed pages
Original publication


    Daria Diachkovashared an impressionlast year
    👍Worth reading
    🔮Hidden Depths
    💞Loved Up

    An awesome adventure across the mountains and back to save the country. Involves turning a mortal girl half-witch and teaching a girl witch about friendship and human emotions.
    ++Goblins included.


    Daria Diachkovahas quotedlast year
    “‘Thrilling’ is when awful things happen to someone else,” Strix said. “‘Horrible’ is when they happen to you.”
    Daria Diachkovahas quotedlast year
    “Escort these three to the Margrave’s office,” Bellows said. “If they do anything suspicious, defenestrate them immediately.”
    They set off up the stairs. “What does ‘defenestrate’ mean?” Lizbet whispered to Fudge.
    “It means to throw someone out of a window,” Fudge said.
    Daria Diachkovahas quotedlast year
    You get to do whatever you want. See? It’s gonna be great.”
    “Whatever I want?”
    “The sky’s the limit. Go nuts.”
    Lizbet thought about this. “Can I steal someone’s horse?” she asked.
    “You bet!”
    “But you said that everyone gets to do whatever they want.”
    “So I get to steal a horse, but the man I steal it from doesn’t get what he wants.”
    “He just has to steal it back from you. See how it works?”
    “Then I don’t get what I want.”
    “So steal it from him again!”
    “That’s ridiculous,” Lizbet said. “No one’s going to want to spend their time stealing each other’s horses back and forth. I liked it the old way.”
    “All right, maybe we haven’t thrashed out the details yet,” Belial said. He sounded peeved. “I guess there’ll have to be some compromises, for practicality’s sake. In the meantime, just figure out stuff for yourself. Check back with us, we’ll probably have some rules posted in a week or two.”

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