This exciting mystery mixes fantasy and fact, allegory and reality, in an adventure story which keeps the young reader riveted. A group of children set out by boat to the round island in order to search for a treasure no one has been able to find. Avida, a mysterious old man who lives on the island, leads them to a pit he has dug and tells them to follow the tunnel. The children end up in a strange, parallel world which seemingly holds the secret of the treasure and all the riches they could desire. But as the children spend time in the strange kingdom, they discover all sorts of eerie things; the concept of time is completely different, physical perfection is a sublime goal and everyone must toe the official line or face the consequences.
The children are imprisoned and escape thanks to their own cleverness combined with team work. They learn that trust, loyalty and understanding are far more important than precious gems. When they return home everything seems to have changed; the children have acquired greater maturity, the elderly Avida disappears and the round island is swallowed up in a volcanic eruption. The dramatic events are paralleled only by the profound experience they have undergone together.
Illustrations: Avi Katz