At the end of the second book about Gom of Windy Mountain (The Crystal Stair), Gom had found a tutor to help him learn the magic he needed to stand beside his mother, Harga the Brown, as she battled a universe-wide evil. In this third volume, Gom does indeed learn the rudiments of magic before his crusty, suspicious tutor, Folgan, casts him out; but Gore's powers are fully awakened in his absent mother's workshop. And none too soon: the evil shapechanger Katak escapes his sealed sea cave, hoping to claim the starstone that will destroy the crystal stair--the gate between worlds--and with it all of Ulm. Gore not only destroys Katak but also restores his faithful companion, Stormfleet, to his natural state--and meets lovely young Anja of the Fourth Realm. What began as a story is fast becoming a saga, if not an epic. Chetwin's inventiveness is unflagging as she introduces ghosts, catastropes, and new companions for Gom. She keeps reminding us who the earlier characters are, making it seem likely that there will be more books. And why not? Gore is only now coming into his own as a wizard; readers have an investment in his success.