I believe I first read this in the mid/late 80s. Here what's I can recall:

  • It involved a boy and a girl - I believe 7-10 years old - I don't recall if they were friends or brother and sister
  • They were given a "stone" on a string necklace that enabled magic and protection of some sort from some middle-aged/old-aged guy that lived in town
  • One plot is where an evil "magician" of some sort comes to their school and turns the assembly into an assortment of snails/other creatures, but their "stones" protect them from the magic
  • I vaguely recall that they were both taught transformation "spells" and could turn themselves into snails or something
  • At the end of the book, I believe the boy is also able to control the weather - he makes it rain to fill up a water barrel (or maybe he stopped it raining - something like that).

It's a book that my nephew would thoroughly enjoy and I would like to get for him, however, the above is pretty much all I can remember these days - I'd recognise it if I see it though...

I remember taking this out on a "child's" library card mid 80's - not sure if that helps though. Does mean the book will have been published before then. Wishing my memory was a bit better.

3 Answers 3


Is it possible that Tirissa and the Necklace of Nulidor (2009) by Willow is your book?

From Amazon:

One day twelve-year-old Tirissa discovers that everyone in her village is under a spell. Everyone but her! Then she sees a mysterious stranger change into a huge bird, a bird with a beak like a sword. Did he cast the spell? Desperate to find someone who can break it, she flees, leaving her village behind. An old herbwoman tells her to seek help from a wizard who lives far away, and her journey takes her across the Three Kingdoms. Along the way she's joined by a kindly troll and a short, fat palace guard. They are pursued by the twin princes of Kellayne, the best hunters in the Blue River Kingdom, as well as by the huge, dangerous bird. Meanwhile, an evil wizard watches Tirissa and her friends in his magic mirror and plans a second spell that will kill everyone in the Three Kingdoms.

  • Sadly - it's not. Given an upvote for your research effort though if that's any consolation... I really need to remember more details which is my problem... books you read and a few decades later (feeling like an old man here) you can't remember the author or the name of, just a vague "this is what I remember happened") Commented Feb 4, 2015 at 2:53
  • In my Q, I also said, it was in the 80s/early 90's - that I'm sure of, so the book must have been published by then... Commented Feb 4, 2015 at 2:56
  • I didn't see that part. Sorry to get your hopes up Commented Feb 4, 2015 at 3:05
  • No worries - it should be me that has a better memory! Give me a paragraph from a sci-fi writer and I most likely can find it, heck, even probably got a copy of it in my bookshelves... this one is just bugging me... :( Commented Feb 4, 2015 at 3:11
  • Although this isn't the book I was looking for - There's little point letting the bounty go auto-rewarded for half what it should. So, I've awarded it more for good attempt and effort than a correct answer. Commented Feb 6, 2015 at 23:45

Was it A Necklace of Raindrops: and Other Stories (2001), by Joan Aiken?

Amazon’s summary says,

Here are eight gloriously imaginative stories for eight satisfying sessions of bedtime reading. There’s a flying apple pie, a cat that’s bigger than an elephant, a house that lays an egg, storybook animals that leap out of their books at night, and a wealth of other wonderful characters and ideas, all with the colorful, dreamlike quality of the very best fairy tales.

  • We're getting closer - however it was definitely a book by itself -- not a short story... Commented Feb 4, 2015 at 3:38
  • Alright... how about this? en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Worst_Witch Commented Feb 4, 2015 at 16:02
  • I've read all of that series, and that's not the one either... sorry! Commented Feb 4, 2015 at 21:41

Under The Mountain?

My first thought was the book, mini series & movie from New Zealand called "Under the Mountain" from 1979.

It does not have stones on a necklace, but does involve stones that the children put magic into to defeat slug-like creatures.

The show focuses on twins Rachel and Theo Matheson. While on school summer holidays in Auckland, they are contacted by a man named Mr. Jones, who had met them briefly eight years earlier. This time, Mr. Jones reveals his true identity and mission. He is an alien, sent from another world in a battle against another race of aliens. These latter creatures were a family of slimy, slug-like beasts who could take on human form. Led by the evil Mr. Wilberforce, the slug monsters were now bent on destroying Earth and only the twins' emerging psychic abilities could turn them back.

In the final episode of the series, the twins are each required to throw a stone and focus their psychic energy into the stone to create a red and blue bridge-like construct that will defeat the Wilberforces.

I know these quotes are from the miniseries, but would be close to the book also.

Unfortunately much of this does not fit your description.

Book Covers

  • Thanks for the attempt but there definitely wasn't anything to do with aliens :( Commented Dec 28, 2018 at 8:41

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