Wednesday, November 18, 2009


One night, a long while ago, we were sitting around the table eating dinner when the word 'shadowalker' somehow emerged from the conversation.  I don't really remember the details, but we were all pretty intrigued.  So at the expense of rinsing the dishes, we took turns sharing our ideas regarding shadowalkers.

A few days later, S emerged from her room with a handful of papers covered with writing and pencil sketches.  She was turning her ideas on the Shadowalkers into an entire story.  She would go through periods of intense, almost frantic writing only to then leave the story hanging for weeks.  Sounds remarkably like an artist, doesn't she?

She finished her story and then it sat on my very messy desk for months, getting buried and sorted repeatedly.  Finally, I got around to typing it up for her and had her draw a few pictures.  Then it sat around for another long while until a Shutterfly book coupon came along.  Leave it to a coupon to finally provide me with sufficient motivation.  I became her editor, giving her deadlines and harassing her until she finally drew a sufficient number of pictures.  Then it was finally ready to get published.  She was unbelievably excited when it arrived in the mail.

It's a delightful story about a little girl named Lina who opens her eyes one morning to find Mera, princess of all Shadowalkers, in her bedroom.  Amidst lots of amazement and gasping, Lina and her four siblings accompany Mera to the land of the Shadowalkers.

While there, the Adams children experience magic and healing, learn of a very literal version of forever friends and the colorful turkeys that share their magic with Shadowalkers.

The children get to go to a castle and end up being swept up in a great battle where they help the Shadowalkers fight off such nasty fiends as ugly trolls, goblins, pixies and minotaurs.

I think the battle scenes and images were most likely inspired by the books about Gregor the Overlander which we read to the girls in the months prior to the creation of this story.  I think she also borrowed the sense of breathless excitement which can be found in the Gregor stories.

In the end, the battle is won.  All the fiends are successfully fought off, though Mera's Shadowalker brother is killed in the battle.  "He is dead and his magic and turkey are gone forever."  After the funeral, the children sit in the grass and eat a dinner consisting of mashed potatoes, macaroni & cheese, grapes, and apple juice. 
Hmmm . . . sounds remarkably like S's imaginary favorite meal.

Lina and her siblings get magically transported home to their kitchen, relieved to see that their mother is reading a newspaper in the living room. How would you like to be the mom that hears this tale from your five kids?

I think my favorite part of the book, though, is the dedication that S thought up.
"To my Dad, who gave me the idea to write this story.
And to my Mom, who made me draw the pictures."

Illustrations © 2009 by S

1 comment:

Mom said...

Be sure to tell S that I love my copy of Shadowwalkers. I read it cover to cover to Papa on Christmas morning. I keep it on my living room coffee table.