Something special is coming out on October 28, 2014. The Tree of Water by Elizabeth Haydon is the fourth installment of The Lost Journals of Ven Polypheme series. Preceded by The Floating Island in 2006, The Thief Queen’s Daughter in 2007, and The Dragon’s Lair in 2009, readers get to join Charles Magnus Ven Polypheme and his friends once again as they continue to seek out the world’s magic.
Like many works in the fantasy genre these days, this series is written for the young reader audience but it can be enjoyed by the adults as well. These stories do not have the heavy social disturbances or dystopian futures Hollywood might find so popular right now, but they are simple character driven adventures and parents should feel comfort in sharing them with their kids.
In The Floating Island, Ven jumps at the chance to sail aboard the latest vessel built by his family as an inspector. The adventure includes attacks by the fierce fire pirates and getting lost at sea and eventually turning into a frantic search for the magical Water of Life and the Floating Island. Though not necessary, it is a good place to start.
In The Thief Queen’s Daughter, Ven finds himself embarking on a secret mission inside the infamous Gated City for King Vendemere. Ruled by the Queen of Thieves where scum and villainy lurk and people are not as they seem, the city is the epicenter of trade for items one may not consider marketable. What would you trade for dreams and memories? According to Vendemere, the mysterious city is a lot like the Eagle’s song Hotel California (my words, not author Haydon’s) because you might be able to enter, but odds are pretty good that you may never leave.
In The Dragon’s Lair, the dispute between two warring kingdoms drags Ven, now the Royal Reporter of the land of Serendair on yet another mission for King Vendemere. This time around, Ven and his friends end up facing…you guessed it, the dragon’s lair.
In The Tree of Water, Ven is still pursued by the evil minions of Queen of Thieves. What better hiding place than joining his friends in exploring the world deep down under the sea. Following an undersea accident in the tunnel leading from the Gated City, Ven must face the Sea King with hopes of stopping a planned attack based on retaliation for the destruction of a reef along with the creatures who lived there.
For those readers who are already fans of the series, this last installment will satisfy the need for Ven’s continued adventures. For those new to The Lost Journals of Ven Polypheme, Tree of Water will make you want to go back and see what you’ve missed.
Elizabeth Haydon presents these books as adventures derived from the original lost journals she supposedly discovered (Haydon claims to be an archanologist or magic expert who unearthed Ven’s original notebooks). Young readers will find this twist of realism exciting and add to the mysticism of the adventures. Magic is a lot better when the illusion seems real.
The worn appearance of the book cover (this includes all of the other books in the series as well) is pure artwork, authenticating the author’s declaration of factuality. Like all of the previous editions, illustrations are included within the chapters. Various artists have participated in the series. Brandon Dorman provided the sketches for The Tree of Water.
Though it might help some to begin the experience of The Lost Journals of Ven Polypheme from the beginning, each book is a separate adventure with new creatures and settings. Go ahead and begin your adventure with The Tree of Water by Elizabeth Haydon. Because if Ven’s journals are truly real, he promises more tales we can only hope Haydon will continue to share with us.