|Scrawls in the Dust - John Booth||
It amuses me when people see Wizards as a simple read without any depths. I designed the book to be entertaining, but it isn’t anything like as simple as it first appears.
I wanted to pull off one of those slights of hands that street magicians do with cards. Everything out in the open, and yet you still don’t see it. That’s why the book is written in first person, something I usually avoid. The reader sees the world though Jake’s eyes and his prejudices become the readers prejudices to some extent. So the reader never sees the elephant in the room even when it’s pointed out to him, because Jake doesn’t believe it exists.
If you have read Wizards or plan to do so, here’s the big clue. Princess Esmeralda is the only character in the book who actually understands what wizards are and what they can do. She’s read all the Kingdom’s books on wizardry, books she has kept hidden from Jake. Esmeralda tells Jake repeatedly that his world view is completely wrong and she even explains why, if you read the Ball sequence carefully.
This isn’t a simple book at all and most of the apparently simple bits have deep and dark explanations hidden behind them.
In the sequel, to be published this Fall, Jake finds out a little bit more about his magic. Esmeralda will try to stop him finding out anything as she insists he should look beyond what her books say to what his heart tells him. By the end of the story he will think he understands magic completely, but as usual, he will be wrong.
I also expand the universe for the reader and explain why some of the worlds are populated with humans and their farm animals. Jake will visit one of the closed worlds that wizards are forbidden to enter and discover more about the history of the multiverse.
The reader will also find out a little bit more about the Dragons and the prophecy that links their survival or destruction to Jake. Wizards is a simple book in the same way that if you stopped reading The Lord of the Rings just before the Hobbits left the Shire, you’d think it was written for young children.