Heather Pyrcz brings her experience as an elementary school teacher, university lecturer, and author of works on literary style to bear in this trilogy. She has four published books of poetry: Town Limits, Nights on Prospect Street, Viaticum, and Raven´s Illumination. Her poems have been danced, sung, displayed on Poetry on the Way, recorded on the National Gallery´s audio-guide, and commissioned by the CBC. Born in British Columbia, Heather has lived across Canada including Whitehorse, Edmonton, Churchill, Ottawa and Wolfville where she taught at Acadia University. Her love of the icefield area began on a geology field trip as an undergraduate and has been brewing ever since.
The Tales of the Shining Mountains, written primarily for adolescent readers, is a compelling trilogy about the challenges faced in the early development of the Rocky Mountains. Book One, The Caves of Castleguard, follows the lives of the Keepers, a community of grizzly bears bred for life in the high reaches in order to protect a mysterious substance that has lain hidden underneath the ice field for millennia. It is 1890, and the animals of the Shining Mountains are facing difficulties caused by the construction of a railroad and an influx of humans. The ancient traditions of Mount Cathedral, home of the Keepers, are at risk. Their mountain Corridor, so necessary for the survival of many of the animals, is threatened. Inexplicably, too many inhabitants of the area are mysteriously disappearing. When Grundel, their leader, investigates, a darker character appears: SaMäel, Lord of Abadon, fallen angel and troublemaker extraordinaire. Can Grundel and his allies construct a diversion to fool the greatest of deceivers in order to save the mountains and their way of life from oblivion?