Originally published 2001
Genre Young adult fiction
|Similar The Rain Catchers, Be Mine, The ornament tree, Molly Donnelly, The moonstones|
In the House of the Queen's Beasts (2001) is a young-adult novel by Jean Thesman.
Emily Shepherd, her professor stepfather, physician mother, and stepbrother Grady are moving into an older, larger house and Emily is very happy. An accident that scarred her face the year before had left her shunned by friends and foes alike. Plastic surgery has removed the physical scar but not the psychic one, and the new home is a chance to start over for her. The house comes with a marvelous treehouse and a new neighbour, Rowan Tucker. Rowan's life is full of secrets, most of which surround her antisocial father and their locked-up house. But on the common ground of the treehouse, Emily and Rowan forge a friendship. Rowan is a woodcarver and has fashioned a series of animals for the treehouse which she names after England's Queen's Beasts; but Rowan's beasts are memorials for animals who have suffered in life and are saved by Rowan's art. The stories she crafts for the carvings bring them to life for Emily, too, who also finds healing through them. In the give and take of real friendship, each gains; perhaps Rowan is finding in Emily the strength to stand up to her father.