Written by Philip F. Webb
Life in Atlantis might have seemed pretty normal to some but for ten-year-old Lily, her life is anything but… In Atlantis is a magic portal to ‘The Un-Real World’, a monster world where nasty creatures come from and witches and wizards can travel back and forth. One night, Lily is terrified by a horrible monster in her bedroom and she runs away. She comes across an ancient wizard who begins to teach her magic to help overcome her fears.
In a world of mean and hideous Boogey Men, Lily manages to befriend some kind monsters who encourage her to face the unknown, boost her confidence and become more independent. Using spells and magic stones, Lily of Atlantis encourages children to be proactive in dealing with problems and ultimately, builds confidence to help with schoolwork, social skills and creativity.
Available on Amazon
Okay, so this isn’t horror and it certainly isn’t ‘dark’ but it does include monsters and creatures, so it definitely deserves a place among Dark Mark’s reviews!
Lily of Atlantis is aimed at kids. It was designed to help children get through some of the tough times we all go through when young and help deal with some of the challenges life throws at us. However, it doesn’t do this by preaching or condescending; it does it through the eyes of Lily, a smart young girl who struggles as much as they next kid, but learns some amazing life lessons through a growing band of friends, including a wizard, the Boogey Man, a minotaur and a Gorgon. Lily learns a lot about life, friendship and compassion through these relationships as the monsters also learn through Lily.
The unique appeal of Lily of Atlantis however, comes from the Wizard. As well as imparting his wisdom to Lily, he also shares a variety of spells with her to make magic stones, or to help with confidence and bravery or perserverance and determination. And the spells are, well, spelled out in the book, so the reader can follow along and make their own magic stones and cast the same spells. But don’t worry adults, there is no turning people into frogs here, the spells are all safe and fun and you can join in too!
Philip was inspired to write Lily by some real-life friends who were having a hard time at school and with growing up, and I know for a fact that creating their own magic stones and working on spells with Lily helped them cope with some of life’s pressures. The spells won’t make bullies disappear or stop you being sad (we are all sad sometimes) but they can help you get through the tough times and realise you are not alone.
So, yeah, this ain’t horror, but it is a bit of self-help, superbly disguised as a cracking collection of stories about Lily and her friends and, after all, isn’t that what horror is for a lot of us? A way of undertanding the world and feeling part of a community that gets us and helps us through the bad times!
Philip has created a wonderful and fun world for young readers and adults alike so here’s looking forward to more adventures with Lily!