Nicholas St North : Brigand , Adventurer and Thief. Not the origin you would expect from Santa Claus right? St. North is a stand alone middle grade read that connects with Joyce's book Man in the Moon. A great darkness has once again been awakened into the world. Pitch, the Nightmare king is free. He has set his sights on the town of Santoff Clauseen, especially it's children.
Santoff is a magical village that attracts seekers of knowledge. Through magic and study of the natural world the residents of this town create marvelous inventions and commune with nature. The children of this village are under the protection of the wizard Ombric Shalazar. Under the tutelage of Ombric the children lead peaceful magical lives. All this ends when the monstrous Pitch begins to attack the village children in their dreams. Fate brings and unlikely hero to the village in the form of Nicholas. Drawn by a powerful dream of treasure Nicholas arrives at Santoff Claussen. Instead of the treasure he craves he finds a town under siege.The choices he makes lead to the awakening of his inner hero.
This is a wonderful read! Full of magic and adventure. We follow Nicholas on an amazing magical and emotional journey. Nicholas is used to only looking out for himself. Now he finds himself drawn to protect a village and a people he hardly knows. I was quite surprised at this origin story. Seeing a different version of the Santa Claus mythos was very enjoyable. One of my favorites characters in this book was Katherine. She is a brave and intelligent heroine. She is the inspiration for the man Nicholas will become and a strong magical user.
There is also an appearance by MIM or The Man in the moon that ties all of the books together. I'm really looking forward to more volumes in this series.