I need to know the title of a novel I read a few years ago (90s).

It's about an orphan boy that has a little white in his hair, meaning that he has magic powers, and as the book progresses his hair starts to change from a little to at least half white and half black, and I think still continues, but I did not finish that book series.

3 Answers 3


I believe you are talking about Changeling, a 1980 Roger Zelazny novel. There is a sequel, Madwand.

In the world of magic, the young Mark Marakson is obsessed with devices, building water wheels and later, steam engines. He does not understand why the people on the farms and villages rely on magicians rather than using the machinery he creates. Young Pol, meanwhile, grows up a poet, musician and singer, marked by the white streak in his dark hair. He is a great disappointment to the man he regards as his father, who is an engineer. From time to time he sees glowing strands in the air which he can touch to make things happen.


This sounds like the character Cabe Bedlam in Firedrake by Richard A Knaak. It's the first book in the Dragonrealm series.

Cabe is sorcerer and has a silver streak in his hair, the more powerful a sorcerer is the more silver hair they have on their head. As Cabe uses more magic and gets more powerful his hair gets more and more silver until half his head is silver.

The books in the Dragonrealm series are:

  1. Firedrake (1990)
  2. Ice Dragon (1989)
  3. Wolfhelm (1990)
  4. Shadow Steed (1990)
  5. The Crystal Dragon (1993)
  6. The Dragon Crown (1994)
  7. The Horse King (1997)

Found your post because i was also looking for this book and though the other answers are talking about some cool series I believe you’re thinking of Leven Thumps. I read this as a kid and think about it often but it has such an odd name I always forget.

Leven Thumps is a human offing, the Want, which means he has many existing powers. He has a white streak in his hair but no one knows why. Leven is the main protagonist of the series. He saves the dreams of mankind in both Reality and Foo. Before he became the Want, he had the one power to look into the future to change the present while his eyes burn gold. He helped restore the dreams of mankind after defeating Sabine and entering Foo to help restore it. His father came from Foo, but his mother Maria Thumps died giving birth, leaving Leven to his mother's half-sister, Addy Graph, and her husband Terry in Burnt Culvert, Oklahoma. He was treated horribly by them, forced to do their bidding and sleeping on a too-small bed on the porch of their trailer home. It is made known in the fifth book that Obert Skye found a copy of Leven's birth certificate, stating his name is E. Leven Thumps. He assumes the name stands for Elton, but it is interesting to know that it took Leven eleven hits to chop down the oldest tree in Foo on the island of Alder. We have no idea why the man who wrote it shortened Elton to E. Is this a coincidence? Or one of fate's little jokes?

  • Hmm, the OP said they read the book they were looking for in the '90s, whereas the first book in the Leven Thumps series apparently wasn't published until 2005. Apr 10, 2023 at 12:07
  • @LogicDictates 80s or 90s from a question, for the 2005 film Serenity. scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/187943/…
    – Jontia
    Apr 10, 2023 at 15:54
  • 1
    @Jontia - In that thread, the OP only said that they believed the film they were looking for was from the '90s, not that they watched it during the '90s. People are less likely to be wrong about when they watched or read something than they are about when they think it was made. Apr 10, 2023 at 17:15
  • @LogicDictates can go both ways as well though. After all the year 2000 was just a couple of years ago.
    – Jontia
    Apr 10, 2023 at 17:59

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