Dominique Valente: Csillagpaff – Mocsári Füzi és az elveszett kedd (Hungarian edition of Starfell – Willow Moss and the Lost Day) (Maxim Könyvkiadó 2021)
Many thanks to Maxim Könyvkiadó for sending me the book!
Dominique Valente’s books is my favorite middle grade series! I’ve written about it before, which you can read here. I couldn’t wait for its Hungarian translation to become available and it was wonderful!
The beautiful illustrations are the works of Sarah Warburton, and the ingenious translation is from Tibor Ipacs. Here I would note how interesting it is that the name of Willow Moss has been translated in all editions: Mocsári Füzi in Hungarian, Violette Dupin in French, Anemona Moss in German, Mimosa Moss in Italian and Dalia Musgo in Spanish. (Somewhat exception to this is that in the Dutch edition, Willow Mos is the little girl’s name, although Willow is similar to the Dutch word wilg, meaning willow.)
Willow is the least magical member of the Moss family. She doesn’t have as spectacular powers as her mother and sisters: he just finds things… socks, a toothbrush, and unfortunately one denture once. She was always “different,” but others said she was “odd”. One day, however, she gets a chance to prove herself, as Starfell’s most powerful witch, Moreg Vaine asks her for help. This is how the adventure begins, in which Willow makes many friends who are all special – they have not been accepted by their surroundings so far. The story reveals that to save the world, we don’t need to have magical powers, but to be willing to try it at all. Willow not only saves Starfell, but also realizes that what matters is not what others think of her, but what She thinks of Herself.
I don’t even know which one I am waiting for more: the second volume in Hungarian or the fourth volume in English.
To learn more about the series, visit the writer’s website: https://dominiquevalente.com/
I made a mini interview with the author, please see below:
Boglárka Döncző: When did you create Willow’s figure?
Dominique Valente: Willow came to me by accident when I was driving home from work one day in 2011! I was at a traffic light and I was thinking about how in fantasy stories so often the main character is the ‘chosen one’ – the person who is going to be the princess or has magic after hundreds of years that will save the world/kingdom etc. When suddenly a twelve-year-old girl with the worst magical power in her family popped into my head. I wrote the first chapter the next day.
Boglárka Döncző: What adventures will Willow be involved in next?
Dominique Valente: In book Willow Moss, the youngest and least powerful sister in a family of witches, recently saved the world. The problem is, nobody can remember it – and, to make matters worse, her magical ability seems broken. Instead of finding lost things, objects keep disappearing against her will … which is especially troubling now that her friend Sometimes needs her help! Her friend, the forgotten teller, has discovered how to see ten minutes into the future. Unfortunately, that’s only enough time to find out that his kidnappers are on their way! His only hope is to write an urgent letter to Willow, asking if she wouldn’t mind trying to find him. As Willow and her friends piece together what has happened to Sometimes, their adventure takes them from an enchanted tower to the magical forest of Wisperia and into dangerous new realms… Can Willow save him when her own powers are out of control? In book 3, for the very first time, magical children like Willow are allowed to go to school alongside their non-magical neighbours. But Willow is suspicious. She knows the Brothers of Wol are up to no good, so why are they changing the rules all of a sudden? On her first day, Willow meets an elf girl named Twist, and soon they are embarking on Willow’s most urgent mission yet: to protect the children of Starfell, uncover the mystery of a long-lost kingdom – and prevent the very source of magic from getting into the wrong hands.