Isla’s search for her missing brother, Pirie, has brought her to the vast Wildlands. The forest is a treacherous place for a fox cub, but Isla is talented in foxcraft — ancient arts of cunning known only to her kind.
Skilled though she is, Isla’s grasp of foxcraft is still new. And she’s not alone… A cruel and mysterious fox stalks the forest, with the power to enslave others to his will. In order to survive, Isla must learn to trust in the rustic Wildlands foxes.
But there are tales of others — a council of Elders who are masters of foxcraft, and who warily guard its most potent secrets. If Isla wishes to master her gifts and find her brother, then the Elders may be her only hope.
Published by Scholastic
Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29241312-the-elders
Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0545690846
10 Random Things about Foxcraft: The Elders By Inbali Iserles
1) The book takes place in the Wildlands (see map). The landscape is loosely based on the Norwegian Fjordland region, which I visited during the development stage.
2) Foxes are thought of as solitary animals, but this isn’t generally true. In the story, Isla – an urban fox cub – encounters a skulk of country foxes. Skulks are family units, where adults work collaboratively to raise the young.
3) The term “foxcraft” refers to magical gifts of skill and cunning known only to foxes. While a number of crafts were included in Foxcraft: The Taken, the first book of the series, Foxcraft: The Elders introduces further foxcraft.
4) Pashanda is a foxcraft that first appears in Foxcraft: The Elders. It describes a trance state where knowledge is summoned from the winds. It is used by foxes to sense the approach of friends or foes.
5) Isla’s quest to find her brother leads her to search for The Elders, a council of foxes who are masters of foxcraft. But what if the Elders don’t want to be found?
6) I illustrated each foxcraft. You can see them in a glossary at the back of the book, and the images appear as chapter icons. It’s the first time that I’ve illustrated my own story, and it’s been a wonderful experience!
7) Shana-sharm is a foxcraft that’s introduced in Foxcraft: The Elders. It describes the fusing of wills to weave a field of energy called the “shana.” The craft is used by the Elders to protect the Elder Rock.
8) Each book of the trilogy has a story-within-a-story, told in flashbacks. In Foxcraft: The Elders, this comes from Isla’s first memory of snow. To avoid spoilers, I will say no more!
9) Pleaching is a foxcraft that’s described in Foxcraft: The Elders. It is probably the creepiest craft of all! It involves the weaving of minds with another creature. Its practice is perilous, as the stronger will can overwhelm and dominate the weaker. Foxes, beware!
10) The final book in the trilogy will be out next year. Much of the story takes place in the Snowlands, the frozen realms of the Snow Wolves. Expect blizzards, betrayal and a furious wolf with a deadly secret…
About the Author
Inbali Iserles is the award-winning author of The Tygrine Cat novels and one of the authors behind the bestselling Survivors series under the pseudonym Erin Hunter. She lives outside Oxford.