Have you discovered The Tapestry series? It’s a richly imagined fantasy about a Chicago boy who stumbles upon a mysterious Celtic tapestry. His discovery leads him to Rowan Academy, a secret school where great things await him.
The Tapestry series stands out because of the beautiful writing and gorgeous illustrations. The illustrations are my favorite part. Author Henry Neff is a great artist, and it’s interesting to see the world so vividly illustrated by the person that created it. Click here for a gallery of Henry Neff’s illustrations for Book One: The Hound of Rowan.
The Tapestry series is four books strong and growing, with Book Five set for release in 2015. I met author Henry Neff early on, when we presented together at the International Reading Association Annual Conference West. Henry presented his book; I presented worksheets and ideas for teaching The Tapestry in the classroom.
Books in The Tapestry series, all available at Amazon.com:
The Hound of Rowan: Book One of The Tapestry
What Do You See? In The Tapestry, Max saw a tapestry depicting the Cattle Raid of Cooley. He later learns that he may have abilities like those of Cuchulain, the Irish folk hero. What qualities link you to heroes of the past?
Vye Detector: In The Tapestry, Vyes are minions of The Enemy. It is important to be able to identify them:
“A vye is not a werewolf. The vye is larger, with a more distorted and hideous face—part wolf, part jackal, part human, with squinty eyes and a twisted snout. In human form, however, they can be most convincing….They are clever in their deceits and their voices are wound with spells to ensnare you.”
After a Vye attack at Rowan, students receive extra training in identifying and fighting Vyes. In the following scenarios, how would you identify and fight a Vye?
Create Your Own Charge: In The Tapestry, students are paired with mythical animals who will be their charges and companions for the rest of their lives. In the book, the animals choose the students. Max was chosen by Nick, the lymrill. It is difficult to describe a mythical animal—until you organize.
Workers for Rowan: Like any school, Rowan depends on workers to help the school run smoothly. The cooks are a reformed hag and ogre, and a leprechaun is the bathroom attendant. The following creatures want to work at Rowan. Match the creatures with the best job for them.
Enjoy The Tapestry!