Few tales are as timeless as those of friendship and discovery. Science writer and local author Bruce Smith brings us Legend Keepers: The Chosen One (Hidden Shelf Publishing House, $15), the upbeat story of an orphaned mountain goat named Buddy on a quest to find her sense of place. Smith uses his background in wildlife biology to bring scientific details to a children’s novel. On her journey, Buddy encounters Roark the raven, Maurice the marmot, Ursidarr the bear, and other critters throughout the animal kingdom, each experience providing valuable life lessons. While lighthearted and sprinkled with humor, Legend Keepers invokes themes of challenge, identity, and a sense of becoming. For young readers out there looking for a story filled with wildlife and adventure, check out Bruce Smith’s debut novel. And if you’re a bit older, check it out anyway—you just might learn something.