Cover image for The taker's stone
The taker's stone
Russell, Barbara T.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : DK Pub., 1999.
Physical Description:
231 pages ; 22 cm
When fourteen-year-old Fischer accidentally uses a magic stone to summon Thistle, one of its Keepers and an agent of the Light, he must help her fight the evil Belial, who seeks to rule the world with cruel Darkness.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR UG 5.7 8.0 43597.
Format :


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X Young Adult Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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The Stones are beautiful -- too beautiful not to touch. Holding them, Fischer feels strong, powerful. How can he resist? He will show his smooth-talking cousin David, show his own father that he isn't afraid to act. He will take the Stones for himself.But Fischer's impulsive theft has unforeseen consequences. It puts into play an age-old conflict between good and evil -- with Fischer caught between the two. Should Fischer believe Thistle -- a strange, feisty young girl from another time who suddenly appears before him, urging him to return the Stones? Can he escape the temptations of the evil but beguiling Belial, who seeks the Stones so he can control the world? Or should he keep them, with all their power, for himself?Suddenly a fourteen-year-old boy finds himself on a journey that tests the very core of his character, for it is only when Fischer explores his own inner conflicts and spiritual nature that he finds the answers that can prevent catastrophe. This compelling adventure is a race against time that will pull readers in from the very first page. Fischer's moral dilemma is sure to resonate with today's teenagers, who fa

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Gr. 6^-9. Good and Evil vie for the heart of a Georgia teenager in this enigmatic, storm-tossed fantasy from the author of Last Left Standing (1996). The world's fate is keyed to a handful of stones that have been hidden from the argus eyes of Belial for centuries by ageless Keeper Solomon. Egged on by a reckless, bullying cousin, Fischer steals some of the stones as Solomon sleeps, but he sets in motion a chain of events that leads to a climactic confrontation with the Great Tempter himself--in South Dakota at the exact center of the United States. Russell gives the story a millennialist flavor, with ominous Bible verses at the chapter heads, wildly destructive storms that rage across the Midwest, signs, visions, and encounters with lambent-eyed minions of the Evil One. Fischer displays psychic powers and other hints that he's more than he seems, but he is also subject to common adolescent doubts and conflicts; in the end he does make the right choices, though not before a sharp internal struggle. The suspenseful plot will keep readers glued to the page, and although there is no overt message, the topic of faith comes up often enough to please those seeking religious themes. --John Peters

Library Journal Review

Gr 7-10-This convoluted fantasy has a mixture of Christian, Native American, and Gypsy motifs, but it never really gels, leaving readers wondering how it all fits together. Fischer, a bookish 14-year-old, is prodded by his arrogant, self-confident cousin, David, to steal a handful of stones from a man and a girl around a campfire. In Thistle and her father's world, there are Keepers, which is what she and her father are, and there are Takers, which is what Fischer has become. The Stones he has taken have magical powers, and the Keepers must protect them from Belial, the King of Evil. When these Stones are separated, they lose their protective powers, and Thistle and the boys are in danger. It is then up to the cousins to reunite Thistle with her father. Combined with the problem of getting her from Atlanta to South Dakota is the fact that Belial is actively looking for the Stones. Eventually David drops out and Fischer and Thistle are left alone to face Belial. The story suffers from a breakneck plot that sags under the weight of too many coincidences. No problem lasts for more than a page and the way in which the three teens careen from one danger to the next destroys the tension. Also, even though Thistle insists from the beginning that Fischer must have another Stone and he maintains he doesn't, it takes a vision on a sacred mountain to goad him into checking his pocket one last time, where he finds the last Stone. It's a little too much, a little too late. Megan Whalen Turner's The Thief (Greenwillow, 1996) and David Eddings's "The Belgariad Series" (Ballantine) are far better choices for readers interested in magical stones, mythology, and adventure.-Patricia A. Dollisch, DeKalb County Public Library, Decatur, GA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.