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A Journey To The Four Kingdoms Paperback – February 8, 2013
About the Author
Karl F. Hollenbach was born in 1925 in Louisville, Kentucky. He received his B.A. and M. Ed. from the University of Louisville. His esoteric and metaphysical articles have been published in Japan and England as well as the United States. He and his artist wife live on Dunsinane Hill Farm near Fort Knox, Kentucky.
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The story begins as Firebreather is created from remnants of cloth from a golden dragon standard. The tail is to become a toy dragon. This is no ordinary stuffed dragon.
The future king, Pid (for short), finds a lifelong companion, friend and teacher in Firebreather. Together they find more than adventure, they find the higher and deeper parts of themselves. The things that will create and define them as strong and wise leaders.
Through adventures galore, the two best friends discover the ways of patience, courage, and much more. From the frightening basilisk to giant red dragons, the creatures in this tale are plenty. Each adventure is a moral and life teaching.
The ending was precious to me and I was surprisingly emotionally moved. I really was. I love a good ending and this was one of the better ones. I was moved greatly by the depth of understanding this author holds about the ways of the human heart and soul. There are many quotes I highlighted in this book such as
"a new world is sometimes created so that one person may learn one thing"
"Courage helps change what should be changed. Patience helps
keep what should be kept. Wisdom, the voice of the Great Me, tells which to choose."
"You do not change when you are taught something. You change only when you learn something."
There is no gore, no sex or awful violence. Honestly this is a great read for ANY age and that's a fact.
Told from the viewpoint of Firebreather, a dragon created from discarded parts of the king's coronation robes, we follow Pid, the young prince, and Firebreather to the four kingdoms. The story begins on Pid's fourth birthday and moves along through the years as he attends school and studies different subjects in preparation for his journey to the four kingdoms. To keep from giving away the plot I'll just say there's plenty of adventure at hand, and Pid and Firebreather face danger as well as friendship and learning as they search for the Great Secret.
Karl F Hollenbach has written a story that will have young readers cheering for Pid to accomplish each task. And who can resist a little dragon named Firebreather? There are a few minor editing mistakes. For example: "There was a resolve within them whichthem, which made me..." (p. 109) "That bittersweet feeling that I'dI had been unable..." (p.118) I know it's easy to overlook a word or two that's misspelled or repeated. That said, in A JOURNEY TO THE FOUR KINGDOMS, the author leads the reader along with the characters on a quest and introduces a few surprises along the way. Enjoy.
Beautifully written with an eye for feeding imagination and providing simple truths in a way that is not preachy or clichéd, Hollenbach has created a story that will enchant readers and provide them with a story that really does highlight the necessity of friendship, acceptance, love and growing up. While the bittersweet ending will bring a tear, the overwhelming feeling is that you want to share this story with your children and your friend's children.
With patience, courage, friendship and learning at its core: the story will stay with you, and be used to help children understand the value in those qualities in easily understood examples that allow imagination and a story to convey concepts, rather than another `talk'.
I received an eBook from the author for purpose of honest review and inclusion in the Children Read week at I am Indeed. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions were my own responsibility.