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Dragons of the Watch: A Novel (Dragon Keepers Chronicles) Kindle Edition
|Length: 402 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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“The writing is crisp and the setting imaginative. This series will speak to all ages of Christian readers.”
“Donita K. Paul never fails to satisfy the imagination and delight the soul.… This is fantasy that truly illuminates reality.”
—JIM DENNEY, author of the Timebenders Series
“Donita K. Paul’s vivid imagery and startling plot twists will delight fans.”
—KACY BARNETT-GRAMCKOW, author of the Genesis Trilogy
“I wouldn’t expect anything less from Donita K. Paul, as she always gives us a delightful read: intriguing, challenging, and full of blessing.”
—KATHRYNMACKEL, author of Vanished
“Donita K. Paul possesses a unique talent for instilling deep wisdom and spiritual truth in a story that is engrossing and satisfying.… She is one of my favorite authors.”
—HANNAH ALEXANDER, author of Silent Pledge
“Donita K. Paul’s inventiveness never ceases to amaze. Fresh ideas for new races of people and unusual creatures keep flowing from her gifted pen.”
—JILL ELIZABETH NELSON, author of the To Catch a Thief Series
“Shut your eyes, hold your breath, and plunge into the unshackled imagination of Donita K. Paul.”
—LINDA WICHMAN, author of Legend of the Emerald Rose
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
Ellie sat on her favorite boulder and looked Tak right in the eyes, telling him what was on her mind. “Gramps shouldn’t have taught me to read.”
Tak responded as he usually did when he received Ellie’s confidences. He lowered his head, placing it on her knee for a rub.
Ellie obliged her pet, stroking the white hair between his nubby horns with one hand while digging in the pocket of her homespun pinafore with the other. The mountain breeze toyed with the paper she withdrew. With difficulty, she smoothed the small poster out on her other knee. Dirty and wrinkled, it still made her heart beat a little faster.
Royal Wedding and Coronation
Prince Jayrus, Dragonkeeper and Paladin
All invited to the celebration
“All invited. But Ellicinderpart Clarenbessipawl and her goat Tak can’t come. No chaperone, no travel. Ma and Da aren’t interested. And Gramps just laughs. ‘You’ll see. You’ll see,’ is all he says. He should take me himself.”
Her younger brother’s shrill yell came from the knoll rising out of the river to the east. “Ellie! Ellie!”
He stood on the hill, grinning like a bear with a paw in the honey hive and his face red from running. His stubby tumanhofer body bounced with excitement. He held his fists above his head and whirled them around in circles. Something had set him off.
She stood and hollered back. “You be calling me by my proper name out in the open ’n’ at the top of your lungs, Gustustharinback. Ma will tan yer hide if she’s finding out you disgrace the family with such shabby care of our dignity.”
When he saw her, he cupped his hands around his mouth and shouted, “Yer wanted at home. Itta be good news.”
That information didn’t impress her. Probably a delivery of the bolt of muslin ordered, which meant she’d be cutting and dyeing lengths for making new clothes. Not exciting news at all.
“Can it wait?” She gestured behind her to the scattered goat herd. “I’ll have to gather Tak’s clan if I’m to come home now.”
“I’ll come help you.” Gustus charged down the hill toward the footbridge across the river.
Ellie stared at him for a moment with her mouth hanging open. The good news had nothing to do with cloth. Her brother would never voluntarily help bring in the goats for something as mundane as new clothes. He scurried down the path, slipping some on the loose rocks. But the precarious descent did not slow him a bit. Even in the narrower patches, where exposed roots of arranndon bushes tripped careless hikers, her sturdy brother skidded downward.
Folding the royal celebration notice into a small square, Ellie stuffed it back in her pocket. She turned away from watching her brother’s progress and nudged the goat. “Come on, Tak. You find the nannies, and I’ll find the billies.”
Ellie went one direction and Tak another. In a few minutes, she located the fifteen goats that formed the herd. Mostly young males, these animals preferred the rockier terrain. She suspected it had to do with their perpetual game of I’m-up-highest.
She clicked her tongue and tapped her staff on a rock. Their heads rose as if all attached to the same string, though they didn’t come right away. Each one chewed what was in his mouth and casually left his place one by one. Taking a serene amble down the hillside, they passed her, heading toward the bridge and home.
When the last one clomped by, Ellie rested her staff on her shoulder and followed. Tak already had the nannies plodding along the bank toward the footbridge. Gustustharinback trailed the nannies and carried the smallest of the baby goats in his arms.
He shouted when he caught sight of his sister. “Hurry! Aunt and Uncle Blamenyellomont are at the house. I can’t tell you the surprise, and I’m gonna burst with keeping my tongue from waggin’ and you from knowin’.”
She tapped her staff on the rock beneath her feet. The billies scampered before her, picking up her impatience and gratefully heading for home. Even after eating all day, they appreciated the handfuls of button grain they got from the farmer’s younger children.
With the goat hoofs pounding on the wooden bridge, Ellie couldn’t hear or be heard. So she waited until she’d caught up with her brother on the other side.
“What’s with all the falderal, Gustus?”
She watched as he forced a glare onto his face, erasing the impudent grin he’d been wearing. “You are to call me by my proper name if I have to call you by yours.”
“There’s a difference between shouting ‘Ellie’ and speaking ‘Gustus’ quietly.” She grabbed his arm. “Now tell me, or I’ll toss you into the river.”
He pressed his lips together and gave her his most obstinate glower. The corners of his lips twitched, and she knew he wanted to laugh. She let go. She couldn’t really dunk him while he carried the small kid.
“Why are our aunt and uncle here?”
“Can’t tell you that either. But they’s only stopping, not staying. We’d better hurry.”
Ellie lost Gustustharinback’s help as soon as they came in sight of the pens. He scuttled down the last hill and opened the gate but then ran through the goat barn, across the yard, and into the house.
The herd followed the leader through the opening and took up different places to observe their world. Ellie and Gustus had put many odd things within the goat pen for the animals to climb on. Old wooden benches, barrels, a huge thick branch they had pulled with the donkey’s help, and crates littered the ground. The goats enjoyed scrambling up, over, and around the obstacles.
Tak stayed at Ellie’s side as she put water in the trough and fastened the barn door securely open so the animals could come in if they wanted. He followed her out the door on the other side of the barn and waited patiently while she latched it shut.
Entering the back door so she could wash before meeting their visitors, Ellie noticed that the kitchen showed signs of serving tea. Her mother must have prepared refreshments to carry into the common room. Through the pantry door, she could see empty spots on the shelves, which meant the good china pot and the blue glass dishes were being used.
Warm water sat in a tub in the sink, and she used that to wash her face and hands. She pulled the scarf off her head, gathered her long, curly black locks into a ponytail and used the scarf to tie it in place. Wisps of hair immediately escaped and framed her tanned face. She washed her face again as if she could rid herself of the look of a farm girl. Hopefully Aunt Tiffenbeth wouldn’t make that tired old comment: “Your blue eyes would be more attractive if you scrubbed away some of that mud you use for face cream.”
Voices from the family’s conversation drifted through the partially open door. Aunt Tiffenbeth quarreled with Ellie’s father.
“Brother, you are wrong in this. Ellicinderpart is your eldest child and way past the age to be in the village looking for a husband.”
“If there’s a man good enough for her, he can just come courting here.” Her father’s voice rumbled in the wood-paneled room, and Ellie did not even have to strain to hear him. She stepped closer to the door in order not to miss a single word her aunt spoke.
... --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
- File Size : 4025 KB
- Print Length : 402 pages
- Publisher : WaterBrook (October 4, 2011)
- ASIN : B004KPM1AS
- Publication Date : October 4, 2011
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Language: : English
- Enhanced Typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #882,399 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Dragons of the Watch arrived on my doorstep late Saturday afternoon. I casually opened the package and laid the book on the counter. My 10-year-old was standing nearby. My husband said to him, "Hey CJ, look at that." He walked over, his mouth dropped open, then he quickly snatched the book and turned to run. Before he could get to a comfy spot on the couch I called out, "Nope, I get to read it FIRST." I was officially declared "the meanest mom in the world." No worries, though, I didn't hog the book. By midnight Sunday I was reading the last page. Now, how do I write a glowing review without spoilers?
I have to be brutally honest. When I read the preview chapters, I wasn't sure I was going to like the rest. It seemed so strange. Why didn't Ellie find her circumstances strange? Why didn't she complain? Why did her aunt and uncle just drive off and leave her and expect her to be ok? I wasn't so sure I was liking the way this book was starting off! I shouldn't have worried. First of all, Ellie was quite able to care for herself and I was being too much of a "mother hen". Secondly, her personality and ability to handle her unusual circumstances is explained eventually. I was able to identify my own anxieties while reading the book. I mean, don't we normally expect a book to have a "happy" ending? For everything to work out in the end? Even though I reminded myself of this, I was caught up in the story and found myself feeling a genuine concern and worry for Ellie, Bealomondore, and the other characters. I fell in love with the book, and especially with Ellie. She just might be my favorite character yet out of Mrs. Paul's books that I've read. I may not have her patience nor her purity of character, but there are so many other character traits that I identify with.
Following in the footsteps of its predecessors, Dragons of the Watch does an excellent job of introducing the characters (and therefore the reader) to their Creator (Wulder is an allegorical reference to Yahweh God). Like a rose blooming, the story unfolds to reveal depth and beauty in the hearts of the main characters. Attributes of Wulder mirror our God's, and principles from the Tomes are borrowed from our Bible so that we learn--as if by a parable--how we should order our own lives. Reading from this point of view causes me to feel refreshed, excited, and filled with hope. When I pull myself from the fantasy, close the book and examine my reality, it's like looking at my world with new eyes. I can't wait to hear what the rest of my family thinks.
Dragons of the Watch is a bit different than the other novels. A little more romance, a little less action. The characters are well-developed. The setting is beautifully described. The main story is very, very good. It isn't just "brain candy", a term a friend of mine just introduced me to). If you haven't read any from this series yet, I recommend buying all three!