Van Til Tool

Using the Van Til Perspective as the tool to discover what life means and how it ought to be lived.

Friday, May 27, 2011


A Look At New Christian Fantasy Author Dylan Higgins Debut Novel

by Forrest Schultz

Ever more christians are getting involved in writing fantasy novels. I have posted here some reviews of these books being written by christian authors here and there all over the contry. Now, lo and behold, there are some right here in the counties on the Southside of Atlanta. This is what the "Southside" in "Southside Book Reviews" refers to. Dylan Higgins is a teacher at a christian school called The Campus, which is located in Fayette County, the county directly to the east of the one I live in, Coweta. I met him and his band at the New Writers Night at the Barnes and Noble in Coweta's Ashley Park mall last month. Below is the review of his debut book. I will also be reviewing the second one, which will be coming out soon.


Southside Book Reviews
Reviews Of Books Recently Written By Southside Authors
Compiled by: Forrest W. Schultz 770-583-3258

April 26, 2011

Fayette Author Dylan Higgins Debuts With YA Fantasy Awakening

A review of

Dylan Higgins Awakening, Book One of The Emblem & The Lantern (Create Space, 2010)
310 pp $12.99 ISBN-10: 1453702989 ISBN-13: 978-1453702987

Reviewer: Forrest W. Schultz

The nationwide surge in the publication of works of fantasy is now in evidence in the Southside. esp. among brand new authors. One example is the Young Adult Fantasy published last year by Fayette educator Dylan Higgins. Awakening is Book One of his tetrology titled The Emblem & The Lantern. Book Two, Stirring, will be released later this year.

Suppose that when you were twelve years old your parents told you that one of your favorite fairy tales had really happened! And, suppose you were also told that the hero of the story was your distant ancestor, and that his magic lantern was a family heirloom hidden right here in the house. This is what happens to the two central characters in the book under review here: the twins Ethan and Eisley Lambent, who are named after two of the author's children. The result?? Ethan and Eisley decide to sneak away and repeat their ancestor Riley's adventure, which was a journey to a land of everlasting and total darkness in which his only source of illumination was this lantern.

The story is a classic fantasy quest, but is by no means a crass copying of any story with which I am familiar, and fantasy and science fiction are my favorite genres both as a reader and writer. The story, characters, and lands are all interesting and well depicted, and the reader is carried along both with the external events and with the struggles within the characters. The magic lantern and the light versus darkness motif, both literally and symbolically, are central to the story. If the other three books are as good as this one, this could prove to be one of the major fantasy works of our time.

One puzzling thing is the name of the land of perpetual and complete darkness, Gloam. The name appears to be a cognate of the gloaming, which is a Scottish word for dusk. Therefore it is a surprising term to employ to indicate total darkness. The opposite name, Glaem, which apparently is the archaic form of "Gleam", however, is an excellent term, and its antiquity is further indicated by compressing the "a" and "e" into a diphthong.

Higgins is an educator at The Campus, a private school in Fayette County. He is also a musician who has formed a band, Sleepy Turtles, named after a mountain range in the story, which performs songs based on the story. Information is available at


Post a Comment

<< Home