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Read reviews on a great book for teens

Monday, December 7, 2009

* Terrestria Chronicles *

Photobucket Terrestria Chronicles by Ed Dunlop
Ages: 10 and up 
Price: $7.99 per book or $47.99 for the entire series

Visit the kingdom of Terrestria, a land where knights and their ladies live in castles and hwere dragons still roam (occasionally).

The Terrestria Chronicles allegory series was written with a three-fold purpose: to honor Jesus Christ as King, to challenge young readers to love and serve Him, and to teach them to guard their hearts for Him. The focus of the series is always on the King.

Fast-paced action… powerful imagery… heart-pounding adventure… These life-changing books are captivating and once you start reading, you’ll find them hard to put down. This adventure series has a particularly strong appeal to today’s young people: it’s a series with knights and castles, dragons and princesses. . . but these are books in which every page points to truths of the Christian walk. Biblical doctrines and character principles are taught in such a compelling, fascinating way that they will stay with the reader for a lifetime.

Written for ages ten and up, the Terrestria series is ideal for family devotions, classroom use, or individual enjoyment. So grab your sword and take your family on a quest to Terrestria! Your heart will be changed forever.

Also available:  Visits to Terrestria , $5.99

A Study Guide for Parents, Teachers, and Students
Covering all seven books in the Terrestria Chronicles allegory series, this study guide is designed to invoke discussions of the life-changing messages and powerful imagery within each story, much of which might be missed with a casual reading. Visits to Terrestria takes the reader to a new level of understanding of the series. Adults and young people alike will more fully grasp the wealth of meaning in these captivating books.

Melissa J's Thoughts
I am captivated by The Terrestria Chronicles! Absolutely captivated. As a lover of fiction, especially of the old classics, this book series to me, is a rich heritage to pass on to my children and grand children in coming years. The series is a rich treasure, that I'm afraid, is yet undiscovered in the literary world (though hopefully this tour will change that). 

Ed Dunlop writes a series that is reminiscent to Pilgrim's Progress, as far as literary and spiritual symbolism goes. The difference lies, however, in that these books are not difficult to read, as the old English of the original Pilgrim's Progress was, nor are they written in script format, but instead, a flowing story line. 

Since my daughter was born, I have read the entire Chronicles of Narnia series, Wind in the Willows, Charlotte's Web,  and Tom Sawyer to her. It is our ritual to read at nap time and now, she can't fall asleep unless I read to her. Although she is too young to understand, The Terrestria Chronicles has been  our latest series and I have anticipated every nap time because I can't wait to see what happens next!

In book one, The Sword, the Ring, and the Parchment, readers are introduced to Josiah, slave to Argamore, the cruel blacksmith, who keeps Josiah chained with the chain of iniquity and the weight of guilt. At night, Josiah is kept in the Dungeon of Condemnation. Desperate for freedom, Josiah steals Argamore's file, so that he can break out of his dungeon. The file has the letters W-O-R-K-S on it, but this means nothing to Josiah. 

Then, as Josiah is using his file to break free, a man of the church approaches, Father Almsdeeds and hands him three keys through the bars of his cell. They are called the keys of Religion, Penance, and Sincerity. Frantically, Josiah attempts to use these keys all night long, to unlock his door but they just won't work. . . . 

This rich symbolism and allegory is just in the first few chapters and continues all throughout the first book. It is just an incredible series, and frankly, I see God's hand all over it!  There is no doubt in my mind that God gave this series to Ed and guided his hands as he wrote. 

We have only read book one in the series but we will not be stopping there by any means. My daughter and I will be working through the entire series as the weeks and months pass. We will hit book two, The Quest for Seven Castles, in this coming week, which sees Josiah fighting the Serpent of Selfishness on his journey to obtain secen jewels for his Shield of Faith. Then we will pick up with him in The Search for Every Man as he races to save Adam Everyman who has been condemned to die. 

We will join Josiah again in Book 4, The Crown of Kuros, which Josiah must take back, and continue on with him in The Dragon's Egg, when he accepts a gift King Emmanuel does not want him having. Then, we will journey with him to the end in Books 6 and 7, The Golden Lamps and The Great War

This is a series, like all great series I have read over the years, that I will be sad to reach the end of, and will find any other books by other authors, falling flat, because of what I just took into my soul. However, it is also a series, that I can see reading repeatedly throughout the years (I'm thinking Bible class supplements for homeschooling in the middle grades--esp with the study guide that is provided!) and having it be new every time, due to it's depth and richness. This series is a legacy and I am proud to own it and pass it on to our children as the years pass. 

Mel's Thoughts:
The Terrestria Chronicles is a series of books especially written to reach kids with the Gospel message; and wow, do they ever.  Reminding me just a bit of The Pilgrim's Progress, I was blown away when I started reading the first book in the series, The Sword, The Ring, and The Parchment.  Journey to the land of Terrestria where young Josiah is an orphan who is offered a place to sleep, food to eat, and a way to earn money by the evil, deceptive Argamor.  He later becomes a slave to Argamor, having to drag around his chain of guilt and living in the Dungeon of Condemnation.  Ed Dunlop is the author of this series, and he makes the story feel so alive and so personal to your Christian walk, at least for me.  When Josiah is rescued by King Emmanuel, just as he is about to receive a severe beating for trying to escape, he discovers what salvation truly means.  Salvation doesn't come by way of religion, penance, or sincerity; it comes by grace.  Not only that, but he has been given a parchment that immediately dispels any doubt, should he experience it, because at first, it's rather hard for him to understand how he could be set free and wonder at not ever having to return to the Dungeon.

As the story continues, he is taken to live in the Castle of Faith, where he meets new characters such as Sir Faithful, Sir Preparation, and Thomas; Thomas is a fellow orphan rescued from Argarmor, who seems to have forgotten how grace worked in his own life.  Josiah is also taught about prayer and how he can send a petition to King Emmanuel at any time.  As the story continues, Josiah is sent on a mission to deliver some things to the Castle of Unity.  Will he succeed in his mission, as he meets the Giant of Fear along the way?  Well, I don't want to give the whole book away.

I do have to say that I would have absolutely no problem letting Jacob read these books.  In fact, I'm thinking that maybe we could read them at night as a family.  He'll love the storylines, as this is his kind of series, with knights and castles and swords and even dragons sometimes.  The stories truly teach the Gospel message, but not just in a teaching way....they make it real to our lives.  When I encountered King Emmanuel in the story, I could feel the love that Jesus has for us.  It was as if the Holy Spirit was speaking to my heart....I truly believe that this series would be excellent for anyone experiencing doubts of any kind, as well.  This is all my opinion, keep in mind, but I can't recommend this series enough.  The following is just a little bit of info on the rest of the books in this series:

The Quest for Seven Castles- The second book in the series continues the story, in which Prince Josiah is sent on a huge mission.  On this mission, he will come across many dangerous situations, but he has to make it to seven different castles because he has to obtain the seven jewels that he needs for his Shield of Faith. 

The Search for Everyman- This third book focuses on the journey of Prince Josiah, Princess Gilda, and Prince Selwyn to rescue Adam Everyman, who is about to be executed.  Argamor has other plans, though.  Join the three on an adventure that could be life-changing not only for Adam Everyman, but for you, the reader.

The Crown of Kuros- The fourth book follows Prince Josiah's saga, as he tries to find the lost royal crown, which has been stolen from the Castle of Faith.  Who is responsible for this theft?  Will Josiah be able to win it back?

The Dragon's Egg- This fifth book is a story about the consequences sin can have.  It's a story about consequences that are far-reaching, affecting not only the person at fault but everyone around him.  It's a story of how something may seem so good, but if it's not God's plan, how things can turn in a very short time.

The Golden Lamps- The sixth book covers the building of a castle for a smaller Terrestrian village, but as the building commences, the discovery of the golden lamps may change things altogether. 

The Great War- This seventh book in the series continues the battle between the forces of good and evil, between King Emmanuel and Argamor.  Princess Gilda has been captured, but how will this affect Prince Josiah's faith?  Will good overcome evil?

Visits to Terrestria- This is a parent guide to The Terrestria Chronicles.  It's a sort of study guide to help spur discussion and activities related to each book.  It's a great resource, especially for a family to have. 

When we were first offered to review this series, by the author, Ed Dunlop, his wife was losing her battle with cancer.  Since then, she has left this earth to be with her Saviour.  Through all of the hurting that Ed was going through, he knew that it was his wife's dream for this series to be put in the hands of as many children as possible, for the word to be spread, for the Gospel message to be shared.  With exciting twists and turns and suspense throughout, this series is a must have for any child's bookshelf; best of all, there is no magic or wizardry contained in the books at all; and you know what?  They don't need it because they are stories that are so exciting and real to the reader.  They are stories that, in my opinion, are rather hard to put down once you start.  They are thought-provoking stories, life-changing stories. 

(Disclosure: We were provided this series, free of charge, by Ed Dunlop, in association with MamaBuzz.)


Devildogwife December 7, 2009 at 11:28 AM  

We thoroughly enjoyed this series and the first book in the Tales from Terrestria series. My daughter wants to get the rest of the books in that series as well.

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