We have updated our Privacy Policy Please take a moment to review it. By continuing to use this site, you agree to the terms of our updated Privacy Policy.

The label on the bottle reads ‘There be a witch in here. Let her out and there be a peck of trouble’. But Mike is always trying to emulate his impulsive sister or his responsible brother. Then his friend Lee swears he sees something fly out of the bottle, and Mike decides to open it again. Out flows an extraordinary tableau – a Fire King astride a stallion, and a beautiful woman in a bower of flowers – the archetypes of Yin and Yang in terrible conflict.

Mike, seeing that he can tip the balance, throws his lot in with the king. When things go wrong in the real world, Mike returns to his vision, to find that the Fire King has wreaked havoc. He changes his allegiance to the Lady – and sinks into a deep depression. Slowly he learns that the answer lies not in choosing the power of fire or of water, Yin or Yang, his sister’s or brother’s way – but in the eternal dance between them.

Reviews

a good story that holds the reader to the end
More Books to Enjoy 12-16, SLA 2000
another imaginative tale by this award-winning children's author
Belfast Telegraph, 1st April 2000
THE BURNING: 'The insidiousness of evil is beautifully handled in Allen's exploration of jealousy and revenge.'
Janni Howker in TES
The writing style is exceptional ... Highly recommended, school libraries should add THE BURNING to their collection and explore other titles by this gifted author.
Beth Ashworth, Teacher Librarian, Fiction Focus
LORD OF THE DANCE: 'An intriguing and well written psychological novel.'
The Northern Echo
THE BURNING: 'The writing is tense and the complex plotting assured, which adds up to an exciting, imaginative tale . . . '
BfK
LORD OF THE DANCE: 'This is a fascinating book which will not remain long on the shelves but should certainly be available for young teenage readers.'
The School Librarian
THE SPRING ON THE MOUNTAIN: 'Unusual ... with moments of real beauty.'
Junior Bookshelf
THE SPRING ON THE MOUNTAIN: 'Elemental is exactly the word to describe its strange plot. ... Spellbinding.'
Manchester Evening News
An intriguing and well written psychological novel.
The Northern Echo
A fascinating book which will not remain long on the shelves.
The School Librarian