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3.84  ·  Rating Details ·  338 Ratings  ·  30 Reviews
Thirteen-year-old Jonathon, feared and hated by the brown-eyed Valley people because of his blue eyes, tries to find answers to his true identity in the Red Mountains, home of the Dalriada, a mountain people with magnificent horses, mystical powers, and blue eyes like his.
Paperback, 320 pages
Published June 1st 2001 by Winslowhouse International (first published January 11th 1999)
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Apr 18, 2015 Eskana rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Thirteen-year-old Jonathon, feared and hated by the brown-eyed Valley people because of his blue eyes, tries to find answers to his true identity in the Red Mountains, home of the Dalriada, a mountain people with magnificent horses, mystical powers, and blue eyes like his."

It was this, and a bit more. Let's face it, there are a lot of stories with similar themes: a teenager finding out they're "different", leaving to find their other culture, finding themselves there, and staying there. Basical
Feb 03, 2010 Margaret rated it really liked it
Shelves: authors-cd
An excellent YA fantasy, involving a young man's quest for his origins and the struggle between his two peoples (the Valley folk, and the magical Dalriada of the mountains). The pacing was a little off, I thought -- the beginning was a little slow and the end a little rushed -- but I really liked the vivid setting and characters and the emotional depth.
Jun 22, 2014 Bobin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book. I read it growing up about 5 or 6 times. Jonathon's struggle and journey echoed in my own tween life. Today I still recall random parts of the book at odd times.
Jonathan is "looney-blue" - a rare blue-eyed child among the Valley people (an all brown-eyed race of people). Most of the villagers fear or despise him because the only people that DO have blue eyes are the Dalriada who live in the mountains - and they are said to be crazy and ruthless barbarians.

Jonathan learns the truth of his heritage, but it comes not without great personal cost. Eventually he goes to dwell among the Dalriada and claim his place as a bridge between the peoples of the valle
This book was boring enough that I don't actually remember the main character's name. There was this thing about Dalriada, and how they all have blue eyes. There was this right of passage thing called Sol Faringen, and if they finished it they got this scar called the O'Bredann. And this girl who made arrows, couldn't talk, and died.
I did read the book, it was just so boring that I wouldn't suggest it to anyone. also, I would only have remembered the details if it was a school project or somethi
Fsp 5/6
Oct 15, 2012 Fsp 5/6 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jonathan Is a average 13 year old boy living in the southern valley, except for the fact he has blue eyes. For blue eyes are the sign of Dalriada, the barbarians who have terrorized the valley folk for hundreds of years. Is Jonathan a barbarian? Are Jonathan's parents lying to him about his origins? His answer waits in the red mountains.
I find this book interesting because of how it is well-writen, emotional, and simply compelling. It speaks to you about the sheer confusion Jonathan feels, wi
Firegold is about a young boy named Jonathon who discovers that he is not who he thought he was. He is one of a mysterious race of people, the Dalriada, who are thought to be ruthless barbarians. The novel traces his journey to discover himself, and to find out what is truth amidst the lies.

The imagery is beautiful here, but overall, it is nothing terribly special. I would much rather recommend Lloyd Alexander’s books. Having said this, I am still planning on reading the prequel to Firegold, Wh
Mar 30, 2011 C. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was another good book by Dia Calhoun. The main character Jonathon is the only person in the Valley where he lives that doesn't have brown eyes. His eyes resemble the "loony blue" eyes of the mountain people called the Dalriada. Now he has to worry if he's going crazy much like the stories of the townspeople say he will. Will he stay with the town and everything he's ever known? Or, will he go to the mountains in search of these people with blue eyes?
This book has been in my collection for over ten years before I finally read it! I liked the premise of the story and it was engaging enough to keep my interest. That said, the book could have used a more attentive editor since there were elements of the story that needed better integration. I was also often frustrated by the actions of the main character, Jonathan, when they didn't make sense to me. The pacing of the story could have been better balanced, as well.
Jan 22, 2011 Jenny rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: teen, fantasy
Jonathon is different from the other Valley Folk. He has blue eyes, and everyone believes that he is the cause of the terrible blight. His blue eyes and markings show him to be of the blood of the mountain barbarians, the Dalriada. After a mob tries to kill him, Jonathon runs away to the Red Mountains, hoping to find the answers to his heritage. He must undergo the ridgewalk , a coming of age ritual to find the answers about himself.
Mar 15, 2008 Kirsten rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great YA fantasy that shows that even familiar fantasy tropes can be used to great effect in the hands of a good writer. Jonathan has always been treated as an outsider, with his unusual blue yes and a mother who is not from the Valley where he lives. Gradually he begins to realize that he is perhaps truly an outsider; he may be related to the Dalriada, strange mountain-dwelling barbarians who are said to possess blue eyes and strange powers.
Mar 11, 2016 Marta rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really loved this one when I was younger - say from seven to thirteen, more or less. Now I'm past twenty and I can see its faults ahahahahah. But despite that I still find it very gentle and even touching in some passages; it's a good book to read over and over as one grows up.
It's a pity the other novels by the Calhoun were never translated in Italian, I have the feeling I would have liked those also.
Jun 29, 2008 Leslie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a young adult book about the Dalraida - a mythical people with magical powers.
There are horses, magic, coming of age, love, truth and family secrets all wrapped up in a sweet, lovely book. There is action also.
I recommend this book - it captures the imagination and makes the reader dream.
In the first half of the book Jonathan tries to deny that he could be Dalriada; the second half he seeks to complete the Dalriada coming-of-age challenge and so belong. Trying NOT to be does not work as well as trying to be. I found this hard to get into despite good character motivations. There is some mysticism.
Sabrina Robinson
A coming of age story (seems to have been a trend lately) about a boy who is discovering why he is so different from all the other Valley people. His mom, a horse, apples, and the mountains all add up to so much more. A good book for biracial/biethnic issues.
Aug 18, 2015 Meghan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult, children
Notes from my childhood review:

-birth doesn't determine who you are, but who you were born as should be part of who you are
-The boy learns to breathe, stand his ground, face fear, love, cry and forgive
Sep 08, 2010 Danielle rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy-ya
Somewhat predictable coming of age story, but still an enjoying read. It's easy to see what's coming, especially reading it as an adult. Still, it's an entertaining bit of story.
Jun 04, 2009 Meridyforgot rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book almost gets five stars. Very interesting characters and culture. I loved the character growth in this book.
Sep 17, 2011 Katy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a very good book, if you like books about finding out who you really are and going on quests. I really liked it.
Jul 26, 2009 Lauren rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It was a great book about a boy with blue eyes and there was a law that people with blue eyes are supposed to be left to die. Get this book!!!!
I loved this book and would recommend it to anyone. The best type of books are the ones that touch your soul, and this one touched mine.
I love books that come up with new, imaginitive characters. This is a fantasy-like book without the normal fantasy dragons and elves. A great book for young adults.
Morgan rated it really liked it
Oct 14, 2013
Katy rated it liked it
Jan 21, 2012
Tamora Pierce
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Author, essayist, and poet Dia Calhoun won the Mythopoeic Fantasy Award for Children’s Literature for her novel Aria of the Sea. Three of her eight novels are American Library Association Best Books for Young Adults. Calhoun’s contemporary novel Eva of the Farm was a Hornbook Magazine Best Verse Novel. Reviewing Calhoun’s most recent book, After the River the Sun School Library Journal wrote—“Love ...more
More about Dia Calhoun...

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