Cover image for A wizard alone
A wizard alone
Duane, Diane.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
San Diego : Harcourt, 2002.
Physical Description:
320 pages ; 22 cm.
While Nita mourns her mother's death, teenage wizard Kit and his dog Ponch set out to find a young autistic boy who vanished in the middle of his Ordeal, pursued by the Lone Power.
Reading Level:
820 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR UG 5.8 13.0 63635.

Reading Counts RC 6-8 6.1 19 Quiz: 31843 Guided reading level: NR.
Electronic Access:
Publisher description
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Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
X Juvenile Fiction Central Closed Stacks
X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



While Nita grieves over her mother's death, Kit tackles a challenge as dangerous as it is strange: Rescue a young wizard who has vanished on his first assignment. This new wizard is unlike any other--he's autistic and he's a magical prodigy. His power is enormous. Now Kit and his dog, Ponch, must track down the missing boy before the Lone Power finds him.

Author Notes

Author Diane Duane was born in New York City on May 18, 1952, and grew up in Roosevelt, Long Island. She is an American science fiction and fantasy author. Duane studied nursing in college and became a psychiatric nurse. She began writing full time in 1980 and has published numerous novels, including several with her husband, Peter Morwood. She also writes screenplays, served as senior writer for the BBC-TV education series "Science Challenge," and writes scripts for CD-ROM computer games. Her "Young Wizards" series won a special commendation in the Anne Spencer Lindbergh Prize in Children's Literature, 2003. She currently lives in County Wicklow, Ireland.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Gr. 6^-10. Even readers who have not followed Nita and Kit through five previous adventures will find this a fine fantasy. Duane expertly weaves in how the teens have explained their calling to their families and integrated wizard training into urban teen life. This tale is full of dark textures and the title resonates: Nita is grieving for her mother, who has recently died; Kit misses Nita's friendship and support as she turns inward; both of them are attempting to assist a young wizard who is autistic and has vanished on his Ordeal. Duane's homely magic is beautifully and fully imagined: Nita keeps some of her spells in charms on a bracelet; Kit has a buddy relationship with his dog Ponch, whose language he understands. Musings about serious subjects are an integral part of the story, but Duane's humor and her gift for the offhand quip never falter. The constellation of family and mentors around Nita and Kit are fully visible, from annoying younger sisters (also wizards-in-training) to a therapist who understands more than Nita suspects. GraceAnne A. DeCandido

School Library Journal Review

Gr 6-8-Kit Rodriguez is having a rough time. His family's new DVD player and remote control are too busy yelling obscenities at each other to work the TV, and his dog is asking his mother questions about the meaning of life. Even worse, his best friend and partner in wizardry, Nita, grieving over her mother's death, shuts him out emotionally and telepathically. To top it off, Kit has just been sent on an assignment to see why a new wizard's initial Ordeal is taking so long. Upon investigation, he finds that Darryl, an autistic boy of about 11, has the ability to create complex worlds that can contain the Lone Power, but he cannot seem to end his Ordeal, and Kit and his dog must risk their lives and enter Darryl's world to save him. Finally, when Nita realizes that they might be trapped there forever, she is able to put aside her grief and help them. This sixth book in the series covers a lot of ground. Readers who haven't read the previous books may be a little lost at first, but Duane's characters and plot will quickly draw them in. The scenes between Kit and the electronics are hysterical. The incorporation of Darryl's autism is seamless and drives the plot forward. This book belongs in all libraries that have the earlier titles in the series; those that don't may want to consider buying them so they can justify adding this one.-Lisa Prolman, Greenfield Public Library, MA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



ConsultationsIN A LIVING ROOM of a suburban house on Long Island, a wizard sat with a TV remote control in his hand, and an annoyed expression on his face. "Come on," he said to the remote. "Don't give me grief."The TV showed him a blue screen and nothing more.Kit Rodriguez sighed. "All right," he said, "we're on the record now. You made me do this." He reached for his wizard's manual on the sofa next to him, paged through it to its hardware section-which had been getting thicker by the minute this afternoon-found one page in particular, and keyed into the remote a series of characters that the designers of both the remote and the TV would have found unusual.The screen stayed mostly blue, but the nature of the white characters on it changed. Until now they had been words in the Roman alphabet. Now they changed to characters in a graceful and curly cursive, the written form of the wizardly Speech. At the top of the screen they showed the local time and the date expressed as a Julian day, that being the Earth-based system most closely akin to what the manual's managers used to express time. In the middle of the blue screen appeared a single word:WON'T.Kit let out a long breath of exasperation. "Oh, come on," he said in the Speech. "Why not?"The screen remained blue, staring at him mulishly. Kit wondered what he'd done to deserve this. "It can't be that bad," he said. "You two even have the same version number."VERSIONS AREN'T EVERYTHING!Kit rubbed his eyes."I thought a six-year-old child was supposed to be able to program one of these things," said a voice from the next room."I sure feel like a six-year-old at the moment," Kit muttered. "It would work out about the same."Kit's father wandered in and stood there staring at the TV. Not being a wizard himself, he couldn't see the Speech written there, and wouldn't have been able to make sense of it if he had, but he could see the blue screen well enough. "So what's the problem?""It looks like they hate each other," Kit said.His father made a rueful face. "Software issues," he said. He was a pressman for one of the bigger newspapers on the Island, and in the process of the company converting from hot lead to electronic and laser printing, he had learned more than most people cared to know about the problems of converting from truly hard "hardware" to the computer kind."Nope," Kit said. "I wish it were that simple.""What is it, then?"Kit shook his head. Once upon a time, not so long ago, getting mechanical things to see things his way had been Kit's daily stock-in-trade. Now everything seemed to be getting more complex by the day. "Issues they've got, all right," he said. "I'm not sure they make sense to me yet."His father squeezed his shoulder. "Give it time, son," he said. "You're a brujo; nothing can withstand your power.""Nothing that's not made of silicon, anyway," Kit said.His father rolled his eyes. "Tell me all about it," he said, and went away.Kit sat t Excerpted from A Wizard Alone by Diane Duane All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

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