Druidawn Product Review by AdventureZone

AdventureZone - Oct 03

Reviewed by: Terri Campbell

Druidawn by Anthology - Miriam Darnell

Visit the Official Site www.druidawn.com

There is a distant planet where fantasy comes to life and creatures born of myth and legend rule the world. A place where what the mind conceives becomes reality, and fairy tales do indeed come true! This wonderful world is known as Druidawn. Envious is this mere mortal that she can't be a part of what makes Druidawn live and breathe, for one must be between the ages of seven and eighteen to do such a monumental task. Druidawn was born through a group of writing clubs for young talented writers. The concept was created years ago by a fearless mentor and editor, Miriam Darnell and led by Nathaniel Goldstein whose passion for fantasy and science fiction matched her own. When Miriam found Nathaniel, he was only thirteen years old. His work surpassed many writers twice his age. From this partnership a series of stories and ongoing novels by many young writers followed. Now many years later, Druidawn still lives, and its history grows!

The Sleeping Guardian knows everything about Druidawn. This unknown author tells us that humans must be kept out of Druidawn to avoid the havoc suffered by the legendary creatures on Earth many centuries past. The new Earth-like planet was created by the Druids so that faeries, unicorns, mermaids, trolls, Elves, and other mythical creatures could live a peaceful life. Unfortunately, the new planet wasn't peaceful, and needed Overlords as rulers to help control the fighting.

We first peek in on what is happening on this crazy planet through the eyes of Nathaniel Goldstein, as he starts us on a fabulous journey with ”Questors.” Two troll brothers come out of their cave and begin searching for a wife among the villagers of a small town. They kidnap the Innkeeper's beautiful daughter, thus setting the scene for what is to become a great trip around the planet of Druidawn .

I note on the front cover of the book that Druidawn is intended for children ages 12 and up! I'm far from childhood at this point, but find myself liking Druidawn very much. I found it was best to forget the age of the writers and to just enjoy every moment that this unique voyage would offer the reader.

The elementals of Druidawn were my favorites. In “From Haven to Heaven” by Raven Gael, I enjoyed the character of Jessica Treyvan. She is an unknown Fire Elemental with the nickname of Blaze. A supposedly human teenager who lives underground in the hidden Technical City of Haven, she longs to see the forbidden world above. Her insatiable quest for adventure made a very enjoyable story. I was impressed with the young author's seemingly effortless flow and her incredible imagination.

I was becoming a fan of Druidawn, and was sad when Raven's tale ended, until I read “Brethren Fire” by Stephanie Schafer. More elementals come together in a tightly knit romantic adventure. The idea is, what would happen if a fire elemental looking to steal a precious bauble for his lady love, had the nerve to steal the prized Sleeping Ruby from a very powerful witch? The story is fast paced, loaded with action, and this is where we also meet some of the dragons that inhabit Druidawn. I found them delightful, and wondered where I could buy one for a pet?

I was also wondering if Nathaniel Goldstein is still writing as he is now an adult. He offers yet another tale, “Dragonsong.” A short story about a young boy named Palishar, who is on a dangerous quest to capture a very special dragon. He encounters the sinister Camenon, who has other plans for the baby dragon! This was an excellent read with a great deal of action.

Later, we travel far above the planet of Druidawn in “Quest for Survival” by Jennifer Duncan. It is on a cold space ship that we meet our young heroine, Anna. She finds herself on a frightening adventure, after crashing her ship on the planet below. She befriends a unicorn who becomes her protector in this strange new world.

In “Walking the World” by Lucinda Sefton, I find myself fascinated with Aeron and his pet pipilla. Aeron can charm anyone into feeling love and peace while playing his silver flute. He's on a quest for knowledge and must travel throughout Druidawn in order to become a Master. He finds love and knowledge with Thaleen, a lovely young witch who lives in the forest.

Love and peace does not always exist in Druidawn as the “Forest Warrior” named Roots fights for his life in a village under constant attack from the undead. Our author, Vlademir Petunin, keeps us on the edge of our seats with one battle after another. Somehow, I felt as if I had been magically transported into a video game and the monsters kept coming! This author adds a touch of comedy to Druidawn with his writing. I adored his style and way with words, plus I really had to laugh when he added an alternative ending to his tale.

“Alanna, Aeron and His Paintbrush” is about the miss use of magic and how practical jokes can back fire. Alisha Dawn, the young author is talented in the creative way she sets the scene with her words. I could almost hear the thunder and see the lightning.

We are reminded, however, that there are humans hiding on Druidawn in the Technical city of Haven. In “Technicality”, Julie Rodriguez gives us a glimpse of what it would be like to be on a spaceship going to a new colony. It felt like a voyage on ”Star Trek”, as Captain Mikka encounters the unexpected. The surprise ending to the story was very imaginative.

The final two tales of Druidawn took me by surprise. In the first one which was a group effort by the writing club known as “The Kindred Spirits”, nine talented authors created a crazy and funny story called “Kulaan's Boogles” Don't ask me to explain it because in this tale, flowers can fall in love. In the second called “Enter the Boogles”, by Chris Eddington, chickens talk, and slimy creatures are intelligent! I can say though, that it was a lot of fun and full of unique twists and funny lines..

Druidawn is a great collection of stories, and these gifted young writers deserve kudos for their hard work. It will continue to grow as budding new authors add to the archives through the mentor-ship of Miriam Darnell. Currently, there are four writing clubs available to children living in the Broomfield Colorado area. Visit the site listed above for information. I found Druidawn to be a very enjoyable visit to a unique fantasy planet.

Contributing Authors List:

Nathaniel Goldstein\Raven Gael Stephanie Schafer Jennifer Duncan Lucinda Sefton Vlademir Petunin Alisha Down Julie Rodriguez The Kindred Spirits:Stephanie Schafer, Kindra Flavin, Alea Flavin, Bree Boyer, Flecia Fairley, Jennifer Duncan, Kira Haberkorn, Tory Webster, and Julie Rodriguez Chris Eddington

Trafford 2002

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