The Magic Moment: The Moment “The Wingfeather Saga” Clicked

There are times when I read a book, watch a TV show or a movie, or listen to an album, when the thing clicks for me: The Magic Moment. I don’t have these moments for every book, movie, or song; most of the time, there is no magic moment. But when a piece of art, regardless what shape it takes, captures my heart, there is always a magic moment that hooks me. A moment that sweeps over and enchants me, leaving me open and ready to embrace the whole wonderful thing. It is truly one of the great pleasures of life. You feel the heart and soul of the thing you are taking in. You connect to it in a way that you previously didn’t realize was possible. It’s very possible this is something completely unique to me. I don’t believe I am alone in this but I will leave the door open for that possibility.

The magic moment comes in all manner of shapes and forms. It could be an introduction of a character. It could be a well-staged moment of tension or excitement. Maybe it’s the perfect combination of words that form a sentence you simply can’t shake. A sentence that bounces around in your head and leaves you with a fuller understanding of life and your place in it. The magic moment does not cast aspersions to what comes before it. There have been books I love where the magic moment didn’t happen until fairly late in the telling. At other times, the magic moment happens nearly from page one. But for me to truly fall for something, the magic moment is crucial. It’s the thing that binds my heart. The thing that takes the book I’m reading from good to great. Or from great to a classic.

The Wingfeather Saga

When I had the idea to turn this into a recurring feature for Rambling Ever On, the first thing I thought of was The Wingfeather Saga by Andrew Peterson. It checks all the boxes for what we are all about here. If you remember, I’ve written before about The Wingfeather Saga. You can read that review here. It’s a great series, written to be enjoyed by all ages. As you read my review you will notice that it took me two tries, separated by a few years, to truly fall in love with the story. I am completely at fault here. Do not blame Andrew Peterson. It’s clear I was not in the right mindset to appreciate what he was doing on my first, feeble attempt. I finished the first book, “On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness” but I didn’t proceed with the rest of the series until a number of years later. Looking back on it now, that shames me a bit. Fortunately, I didn’t allow that failure to last too long. I listened to the advice of friends, my wife, and my oldest son as they all encouraged me to give it another shot. I’m so glad I listened!

With all that said, I don’t want to be dishonest in my portrayal of things. My second attempt started quite similarly to my first. I found the story to be fun and witty but not much more. That is, until the magic moment smacked me in the face. It’s early in the story of the Igiby family. We’ve been introduced to the main players of our story. The setting has been set. Villains have made their entrances. We’ve laughed and cheered and maybe even gotten a little sad when Janner has his confrontation with his mother and grandfather. All of this is well and good and as I said, entertaining and fun. Even so, I had not yet connected to the story on a deep emotional level.

Then Leeli had to go sing with the dragons. How is it possible to have read something before and it barely registered to then read it for a second time and be left nearly crying from joy and yearning and dare I say, Sehnsucht? C.S. Lewis defined Sehnsucht as “the inconsolable longing in the heart for we know not what.” Leeli and the dragon song hit me with a deep case of Sehnsucht. Deeper than I had felt in a long time. It was at the precise moment I realized that if this story, relatively simple up to that point, had a moment this profound and powerful, then it was clearly a story I needed to finish.

I am happy to report that the rest of the story lives up to that magic moment and in many ways surpasses it. There is a promise given when Leeli and the dragons sing their song. A promise that this story contains echoes of eternity. Whispers of THE STORY. The story imprinted on every soul, calling us to something deeper, grander, and more wonderful than we can imagine. The Wingfeather Saga absolutely keeps that promise.

Keep looking for the magic moments

Perhaps you’ve read The Wingfeather Saga and you had a different magic moment. Wonderful! I would love to read about it. Post it in the comments or on our social media pages. If you haven’t read The Wingfeather Saga hopefully this will be the impetus you need to finally give it a chance. It’s worth it.

Look for magic moments. Keep your eyes and hearts open to them. They take good art and transform it into something transcendent and magical.

Phill Lytle
Follow me

Phill Lytle

Phill Lytle loves Jesus, his wife, his kids, his family, his friends, his church, J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, 80s rock, the Tennessee Titans, Brandon Sanderson books, Whiteheart, Band of Brothers, Thai food, the Nashville Predators, music, books, movies, TV, writing, pizza, vacation...

2 thoughts on “The Magic Moment: The Moment “The Wingfeather Saga” Clicked

  • July 19, 2022 at 10:46 am

    Even at my age, I simply must read the rest of the saga!

  • July 22, 2022 at 12:54 pm

    Unfortunately, because I am a fast get-to-the-end reader, I miss moments of magic. I should slow down and savor what I read, but it takes a deliberate effort to slow down. That being said, this series was great, even though I prefer non-fiction and realistic fiction over fantasy.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.