Book Jacket

 

rank 703
word count 72952
date submitted 06.03.2010
date updated 31.03.2010
genres: Fiction, Fantasy, Children's, Young...
classification: universal
complete

THE DRAGONKEEPER

M E WALLIS

Dragons are invisible…until they start eating people.


 

Summer 1953...the children arrive in the village to spend the holidays with their grandparents. The DragonKeeper arrives on the same day.

The DragonKeeper's Magic powers are awesome, and she's devised an evil plot to destroy the village. But at first, her shenanigans are little more than practical jokes, and it's the children who get into trouble.

Then Ellie finds a strange egg, which hatches into an even stranger chick, which turns out to be a very hungry Dragon hatchling. First it eats the chickens, then cats and dogs, and as it gets bigger it devours whole sheep and even cows. Then it eats the postman. But, nobody believes the children...Because Dragons are invisible to adults.

The children search for the Dragonslayer's sword...The Dragon feasts on the villagers...Crowds of Bad Witches gather in anticipation to watch the spectacle of the village burning...Two DragonKeepers fight an epic duel...Good Witches battle against the forces of evil...and the children come face to face with the Fire Dragon...but can they save the village?

This book is in 3 parts and includes a trio of amusing essays about Dragons and DragonKeeping, written by a Novice Witch, and an exclusive edition of The Pocket Guide to Witchery.

 
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tags

, adventure, children, dragon, dragons, evil witch, fantasy, hatchling, history, magic, magical, magpie, nostalgia, spells, st george and the dragon, ...

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48 comments

 

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PatrickArmstead wrote 1493 days ago

Hi M.E.,

This is a wonderfully written story that will appeal to all children of any age. I found it quite entertaining. I believe a fantasy story is good when it makes the reader forget about the real while their eyes are glued to the page. This book does just that and much more. I'm pleased to have read it and happy to back it.

Backed 100%

Patrick Armstead
Dark Lands

lynn clayton wrote 1508 days ago

Great pitch. A real, old-fashioned story,with beautiful, magical descriptions of the village. You make us feel we're in a land where we may come across dragons and witches. I loved it - children will be in their element. Backed. Lynn

Melcom wrote 1502 days ago

Very entertaining for the young and old alike.

Great idea and the story telling is terrific.

Happily shelved.

Melxx

mikegilli wrote 1501 days ago

Well I thought the pitch just brilliant.
This is a perfectly written classic with double helpings of suspense.
On my shelf with best wishes...........mikegilli The Free

Claudunia wrote 247 days ago

The story is written in original style. Fun read for young readers.

LadySilence wrote 1210 days ago

Great fun to read, and it's kept me up far too late tonight!
There are a few copy errors here and there, where you started a sentence one way, then changed your mind, but some left over words from the original are still there. (Noticed this right at the beginning, but can't find it now.)
An easier-to-find example is at the end of ch 50: "Whilst this has no significance whatsoever under the Rules of Witchery, it may be of use if the mortal authorities stick their noses in; as they are often do." -the semi-colon should be a plain comma, and the word "are" should be removed.

I love the tongue-in-cheek tone in your introduction, it caught my attention right away, and you keep it up throughout the story.

You may want to consider changing the font you use for official Witchery documents, as the cursive script is rather painful on the eyes when reading on a computer.

Backed, and good luck!
~Karilyn
Garden of Souls

soutexmex wrote 1474 days ago

Yes, you have this genre down and I think this will be a success with your intended audience. Being Authonomy's #1 commentator and amateur pitch doctor, trust me, you have mastered this basic sales technique to grab the casual reader. That's how you climb in ranking to gather more exposure and comments to better your novel. SHELVED!

I can use your comments on my book when you get the chance. Cheers!

JC
The Obergemau Key
Authonomy's #1 rated commentator

A Knight wrote 1475 days ago

The one line pitchy to this is brilliant - you basically had me at "hello" and i backed this book from the blurb and the first chapter. Now, having had time to read it all, I am thrilled to find that you deliver on your promis. Taut prose, fantastic dialogue, characterisation to die for and - even better - you have made this a piece that is approachable to a wide-range of age groups.

I wish I had something helpfully critical to say, but I don't. Great work.

Abi xxx
"Everyone knows the rule: Stay inside the Wall, but Tisha believes rules are made to be broken." - Relic

Stephanie225 wrote 1477 days ago

Good story so far, I just have a few questions...
Why would the witch need customers for her Dragon Bane?
Why would the father say bad things about those who read the telegraph?
Where did you get the phrase, "that cut no ice with the boss"? Never heard that one before.

Rose Sampson wrote 1477 days ago

I LOVE this book - when I first started to read I couldn't imagine how many surprises and delights awaited me. The plot is carefully weaved throughout and secrets and hints are given to the children gradually in such a clever way! I haven't quite read to the end yet but can't wait to see what happen!!!!!
A winner - BACKED!!

S Jones

Christopher R. Williams wrote 1478 days ago

A great story and written in a style that children will be able to read and follow naturally. The story has a nice rhythm and keeps the reader relaxed and interested. Dragon stories are at my heart, so I know!

Chris Williams – The Stories of Rhys
www.thestoriesofrhys.com

M. A. McRae. wrote 1480 days ago

A glorious fun read. I loved it. Backed.

Thetinman wrote 1485 days ago

You're right, M.E. there is one more spot for a dragon story. You've put me squarely in Tolkien's world again, and that is no small feat for one who usually doesn't read fantasy anymore because it's so hard to find good stuff.
Well thought out, great imagination, and great writing. Kids will love this, and adults too.
Backed.
Paul
We've Seen the Enemy

bonalibro wrote 1488 days ago

My daughter enjoyed your book a lot.

Backed

Tim Chambers
Moonbeam Highway: With Apologies to Miguel de Cervantes

Hatts wrote 1488 days ago

Great pitch and humourous start - I love the basic facts about dragons! Something every parent should know. You have written so much (72 +k words) and I have only managed to sample some of it. I did find the font in chapter one made it more difficult to read, but that is only a personal choice. Backed with pleasure - I think you have a little gem here.
Hatts

lionel25 wrote 1489 days ago

Ms Wallis, your Part 1 is an amusing, smooth read. Nothing really to nitpick. Good job overall.

Happy to back your work.

Joffrey (The Silver Spoon Effect)

Famlavan wrote 1489 days ago

The Dragonkeeper

Great cover and brilliant short pitch.
Always like books written for adults with children in mind (stops them being condescending to children).
This is such fun and really works fantastically.
Hope this does really, really well – Good luck

Helena wrote 1490 days ago

Hi ME, this is very funny. I love the explanations at the start ad the little warning to children, it's really funny. Be warned the page might turn to ash! The first chapter is great, it's really funny, you have a very quick wit, its also a little surreal, you mention the Celts coming for summer holidays and leaving when their sandcastles are washed away, at one point you mention a watch and Dougals drowning is hilarious. I love the bit about sheep hunters pretending to be fierce and then the stranded man discovers how gentle they are. The sections about Dragon slayers and hunters are great and I think this is a very enjoyable read. On my shelf. Helena (A Load of Rubbish)

J.Adams wrote 1490 days ago

An excellent fairy tale - grisly enough to be exciting, sweet enough to be touching, clever enough to be interesting. A great premise, and a twist on the current witches-and-dragons-are-good themes that have permeated the recent literature. Although I like good dragons and witches, this is a great story that I would recommend to anyone old enough to read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's (Philosopher's) Stone. Backed with pleasure and wishing you much success!
Judy Adams
The Existence Game

Burgio wrote 1491 days ago

This is not necessarily a book for children to read by themselves. It's a book for a parent and a child to share as they read through the guide to witches and dragonkeepers. On page one, they'll chuckle to learn all dragons originally came from Wales. And then learn what those dragons can do as they read further. It's a good read. Burgio (Grain of Salt).

Rakhi wrote 1492 days ago

I really enjoyed this. The pitch is great, I was eager to start your book. Your starting with all the instructions, warnings (especially to the grown ups) and facts kept me entertained and laughing. Just the stuff my son likes to read and then later impress me with. Kids will love the quirkiness of your style which is portrayed in such a serious manner. The tension filled plot will keep anyone hooked. Backed with pleasure.
Rakhi (Sir William...)

klouholmes wrote 1493 days ago

Hi M. E., I enjoyed the essay on the dragons, and the story about the first dragonkeeper. It’s like an evolutionary chronicle. Once the dragon and the witch have the castle, I was caught into this! Wish I could read more today - Shelved Katherine (The Swan Bonnet)

wordreiver wrote 1493 days ago

A lovely story which is well written. I like the concept and three parts. I can see children loving this children love facts and instructions, even fictional ones. Then there is the story in the middle which is written in the old fashioned style of all your favourite authors. I can imagine this book having illustrations and a place for notes in the back. I would have loved a book like this when I was a child and I know my children would. Best of luck with this. GJ

PatrickArmstead wrote 1493 days ago

Hi M.E.,

This is a wonderfully written story that will appeal to all children of any age. I found it quite entertaining. I believe a fantasy story is good when it makes the reader forget about the real while their eyes are glued to the page. This book does just that and much more. I'm pleased to have read it and happy to back it.

Backed 100%

Patrick Armstead
Dark Lands

Heisenberg wrote 1494 days ago

i'm going to put this on my shelf, it sounds really interesting.

bonalibro wrote 1495 days ago

The supernatural is not my thing so I entrust it to my children. My daughter enjoyed it very much, and it is she who did the backing of it.

Tim Chambers
Moonbeam Highway

DDickson wrote 1495 days ago

Hello – I like to comment as if I was reading your book in a shop or library, just making notes as I go along. I hope this is Ok for you, it works for me and it is fun

The Dragon Keeper

The pitches are delicious, baby dragons – aaaaw, eating the postman aaaah

I think that this is absolutely lovely, your instructions at the beginning are charming and amusing. I envy you your understanding of dragons, witches and magic and also your obviously geographic knowledge of Milton Keynes – where exactly is Black Cat Alley ?

This is old fashioned in the very, very best sense of the word.

You have made me smile, you have brightened my day and you have made me wish my grandsons were here so that I could read this to them. Lovely lovely book – Backed with great pleasure – Diane

Stone Legend wrote 1501 days ago

Dear ME Wallis

I like the pitch, I love the idea, I find your writing style a little blunt, but non the less very good. I myself prefer to write in this blunt style, but try to be careful that is doesn't feel too blunt ;)

Your first two chapters feels like a well written dragon fact book. This information that you give in the beginning are things that your reader has to find out for themselves as the story progresses. Remember when you write a story it is the equivalent of a treasure chest. They have absolutely no idea what they're going to find in there, it might b a giant saphire gem, or perhaps a golden magical staff. Or it might hold an ancient sea serpent from the underworld!

But that is why they open the chest, because even though they know they might get a nasty surprise it is their curiosity which drives them forward. I rather feel that your first two chapters kinda takes out most of the fun. Try to work these facts into your story, not all of them, but try to distinguish between interesting tidbits and party poopers. :D

Other than that I think you have a real gem here! A real fire breathing dragon story that we all can sink our teeth into! I love it too bits!

Real great job! I'll be vouching for you and good luck!

Happy Writing!

Anne Morgan

Forgotten Gods

mikegilli wrote 1501 days ago

Well I thought the pitch just brilliant.
This is a perfectly written classic with double helpings of suspense.
On my shelf with best wishes...........mikegilli The Free

kathrynroberts wrote 1502 days ago

This was much cuter than I thought from the title and pitch. If I were you I would change those to reflect more of the feeling of the book. Something more catchy. My only critism would be to trim it up a bit. Just a little editing and this will be great.

Also, there was a spot in the first chapter that jumped out at me that needed fixing... where it says: 'The Wallis girl had even claimed she smell could a witch. She insisted that that the witch...'

I'm sure you meant to say 'she could smell a witch.' Also, I made the same mistake as you where I put too many 'thats' and 'hads'. It really does sound cleaner when you just say right out what you mean, for example:

'She insisted the witch was the keeper of the dragon.' etc.

Hope that helps. I am backing this anyway because I think you can make it a great book and children will like this a lot.

Kathryn Roberts
FATE

Melcom wrote 1502 days ago

Very entertaining for the young and old alike.

Great idea and the story telling is terrific.

Happily shelved.

Melxx

Barry Wenlock wrote 1502 days ago

Kids will love this. BACKED!

Barry (Little Kisna and the Bihar Boys)

Rachel V wrote 1503 days ago

The style, the story and the characters are lovely. Your "prize winning essay" had exactly the right tone - it sounded like a good school essay! Backed!

Rachel

Francesco wrote 1503 days ago

Backed with pleasure! Good Luck!!
A look at Sicilian Shadows would be greatly appreciated.
Frank.
If you back my work, you may also want to approach BJD (a big supporter of my work) for a further read and possible backing of your book.

kristinnb wrote 1505 days ago

This is really good. It starts off well and keeps the reader entertained. Backed!

Kristin
Demon in the Knight

Lockjaw Lipssealed wrote 1505 days ago

While this reminds me of a coulpe other books on the market, this was a pleasure to read....and yes, I think I would buy this!

Lockjaw

S Richard Betterton wrote 1505 days ago

Really good. Great start, setting it all up with the lists - that'll really focus the kids. And nice hook at the end of chapter one, talking directly to the reader.
Backed.
Simon

lizjrnm wrote 1506 days ago

Finally had achance to get back to this - so frigging great! This could be a movie! BACKED again! LOOK ALERT AUTHONOMY!

Liz
The Cheech Room

snave wrote 1506 days ago

Just started and totally taken in by your excellent plot that reaches out and invites the reader in a little deeper - def one to continue - andy

kittykat wrote 1506 days ago

This is lovely - easy to imagine it in published form. I love the various little snippets of information and extracts from history. Your short pitch is irrestible and I think you've created a fascinating world here. Best wishes, and happily backed, Kittykat (My House Eats People)

alison woodward wrote 1506 days ago

backed with pleasure

alison

Laurie A Will wrote 1507 days ago

M.E.,

Great short pitch. It indicates just the type of stories kids will go for. My son is always asking me what types of animals eat people. You have a clear old fashioned type of voice that’s a pleasure to read.

My only concern is chapter length. Kids are used to shorter chapters, although I think your writing is engaging enough for the older more serious kids to want to follow through.

Already shelved!

Laurie – Into The Master’s Lair

Suzannah Burke wrote 1507 days ago

This is an absolute delight and i can see many young novice witches and warlock's vying to be the first to own a copy. The way you have introduced the entire book is unique as is your marvelous voice and style. The child within us all will be drawn to this delightful book...I can see many a parent borrowing the book after the young ones have gone off to sleep.

Bravo
backed with delight
Suzannah Burke
Dudes Down Under

DKTD1 wrote 1508 days ago

I would back this on the short pitch alone... But I read a couple chapters and found myself laughing out loud... good thing I'm not at work...
Very funny, great tone for the kids and a good story. One question though... If a green dragon is invisible, how do you know it's green?

Backed!
Dan-
Eunice Stubbins, among others...

Jared wrote 1508 days ago

It's a lovely idea, a perfect story for children, and you have a delightful 'voice' - light-hearted and full of interest. I wonder about the chapter lengths, chapter 2 is very long, as the age group who will relish this will be used to short, snappy chapters. There's a formatting problem with the font as well, but that's not a cause for concern, easily fixed. My only real concern - and I'm enjoying the story hugely - is that the pitch sets out a situation that really made me want to read on, yet I'm well into the book now and there's still no sign of the action which made me want to read it in the first place. I'd like to see a few hints along the way, or more hints, and perhaps a switch to bring that wonderful premise to the reader's attention sooner. Having said that, there's so much here to savour - I loved the ever-increasing number of barley sugar twists in chapter eight.
Very promising, backed with pleasure.
Jared.
Mummy's Boy.

Toni Allen wrote 1508 days ago

Great fun. A sort of Hitch Hikers Guide to dragons. I would have read more but I personally found the script too small and faint to read easily. The first chapter was just fine.
Toni Allen
Being Richard

lynn clayton wrote 1508 days ago

Great pitch. A real, old-fashioned story,with beautiful, magical descriptions of the village. You make us feel we're in a land where we may come across dragons and witches. I loved it - children will be in their element. Backed. Lynn

hot lips wrote 1509 days ago

I only read chapter 1 and 3 - I found 2 almost imposible to read the type face, and it is very long, but I was warned. I think this book is great fun and children will lap it up - backed with pleasure.
BADD

Cheryl Kaye Tardif wrote 1510 days ago

I really like this. It's different. And it's believable. Makes me think of the book I had on Gnomes that read like an encyclopedia of "facts".

I don't see this as a book for young readers at all. The language is too complex. This fits adult audences who are avid fantasy readers. Or teens and older YA.

Very well done. A great concept, solid writing and the separation of scenes makes it an easy read. Almost educational, yet still fun. Kudos!

Cheryl Kaye Tardif,
author of Children of the Fog

jahek wrote 1510 days ago

I really like this and I think that young readers will too. Not all younger readers need fast pace and choppy sentences - in my experience some like something a bit different. Some parts may need tightening up, but this is a good story, well told

Backed

Jane Holyoake (The Spiral Pendant)

Fellpony wrote 1510 days ago

It's very nicely written, and portrays a lovely imagined world, but it takes too long to start doing anything. I'm at chapter 5 and the children are only just arriving at their grandparents' house. No dragons yet except the unexplained Welsh name in Skegness.

I think it probably will need a bit of shaking up and pruning to become faster paced. Ch 1 - don't put comments to the reader (we shall see later, etc) in parentheses. These are really only reminders to yourself! Do we really need Ch 4 - since in Ch 5 we get the clue that the Knitting Lady is a witch when Grandma finds the book in the knitting pattern? I'll shelve this - it's got something but isn't yet ready to back.

jhoom wrote 1511 days ago

Hi. This has a really nice old-fashioned read aloud quality. It does, however, take far too long to get into the action. I am 13 chapters in and no dragon, and only a hint of a witch - and in a book called Dragon Keeper with a pitch based on dragons and witches, that is just too long to wait IMO. You set up the village and characters beautifully, but I think there is too much description and background and not enough action early on. Perhaps some of this information can be integrated into the action or conveyed through dialogue to make it more dynamic. You write well, and this is a great idea for a story. I am just not sure that a young reader would have the patience to get through all the earlier chapters until things start to get a move on. I have backed it, as with a bit of tightening/tweaking this would be a great story for a younger reader.

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