If Wishes Were Dragons By Karina Fabian

by | Nov 27, 2020 | Fantasy, Middle Grade Books, Mystery, Young Adult

Genre

Fantasy

Audience

Young Adult to Adult

Author’s Worldview

Catholic

Year Published

2020

Themes

DragonEye, DragonEye PI, DragonEye PI Series, friendship, grace, Medieval myths, Murder Most Picante, Original Sin, PI Mysteries, Private Investigator, Shakespeare, Urban Fantasy, Vern the dragon

Reviewed by

M.S. Ocampo

What happens when a dragon and his group of D&D enthusiast friends end up in an adventure that gives “Live Action Role Play” a whole new meaning? You have If Wishes Were Dragons.

When we meet our very un-amused dragon in this story, Vern is out of a job and longing for life in the Faerie realm. His friends, who are enjoying the local Renaissance Festival, are going down different paths in life and the group is going to break apart. All of a sudden, someone makes a wish on a magic lamp and *poof!* Vern is back to fighting Saint George…only it’s actually his friend, Father Rich, made into his paladin character.

As per usual in this series, Vern finds himself in the midst of a mystery, only this mystery is about where and when exactly everyone is. Are they in some kind of alternate dimension created from wishes and memories? Are they in the Faerie realm? And why are all the fey creatures suddenly scared of dragons, well, more scared than usual? Has something happened to Vern’s kin?

Vern and his friends search around for answers. One particular group that stands out in this story is the Summer Court of Fairies, ruled by Titania. And yes, A Midsummer Night’s Dream is heavily alluded to. In Fabian’s universe, the fay creatures were all created as morally good creatures in line with Christian theology but as each had their own personal fall from grace, the darker versions of their myths came to play. Queen Titiana and the fairies, for example, became less innocent and playful and more cruel tricksters after they played the “forbidden prank”. Dwarves became too greedy and obsessed with living underground. This does not mean that the fey creatures are all twisted and evil. Like fallen humans, they are capable of both great good and great evil. It is interesting to see how Fabian incorporates mythical creatures and magical dimensions into the Christian narrative. The effect feels much like a medieval Christian tapestry.

Fans of tabletop R.P.G. games will love the various places Vern and his friends go to: kingdoms, a labyrinth of tunnels, a thunder of dragons, and spider caves. I love that this book expands on the Faerie realm and introduces Vern’s very extended family. Vern’s time in the Mundane has changed him in ways some of his fellow dragons aren’t keen on and their differences on the role dragons play in both realms open up all sorts of possibilities for future stories.

I recommend this book for fans of The Dresden Files or The Enchanted Forest series as this book combines a very snarky protagonist with a very lighthearted, adventurous story. The exploration of the concept of Original Sin, and the spiritual power of saints, the Pope and the sacraments makes this story especially appropriate to Catholic readers.

Get Catholic Books & eBooks for as little as $1 to FREE

Saving Mt. Rushmore by Andrea Jo Rodgers

John’s summer plans are ruined when he is recruited to a top-secret crime-fighting school, St. Michael’s Academy.

The City and The Dungeon by Matthew P. Schmidt

Who knew fighting monsters in a D&D dungeon could convince him that not everything can be attributed to a chance roll of the dice?

Roland West Loner by Theresa Linden

When his evil brothers lock Roland up in a dungeon he finds a locked box hiding a mysterious treasure.

From the Shadows by Jacqueline Brown

In a broken world, Bria tries to unite a family even as she struggles to keep hope alive.

The Boy Who Knew (Friends in High Places: Carlo Acutis) by Corinna Turner

Faced with his death, a fifteen-year-old learns how to live through the wisdom of Blessed Carlo Acutis.

Where to Begin with C.S. Lewis

When he was four years old, C. S. Lewis renamed himself Jack and refused to answer to Clive Staples. For the rest of his life, he was Jack to his friends.

The Vines of Mars by A.R.K. Watson

While tracking down his sister’s murderer, a Martian farmer discovers a secret that may destroy his colony.

City of Shadows by Declan Finn

St. Tommy uncovers a group of elites using an ancient artifact to destroy London.

The Academy Saga: Book 1 By C.J. Daly  

A thrilling, yet clean, high school romance.

Best of 2020

Yes some good things DID happen this year- Catholic creators have not let turmoil stop their mission.

The Fifth Gospel by Ian Caldwell

This is NOT another DaVinci Code, but it is so cleverly disguised as one it makes the perfect gift for your anti-Catholic friends and family.

Jennifer the Damned By Karen Ullo

A story of a teenage vampire without the glamorous tempting allure, trying to really live in the real world.

Love, Treachery, and Other Terrors by Katharine Campbell

This quirky, fairytale fantasy is a fun and amusing read with a serious moral backbone.

Saving the Statue of Liberty By Andrea Jo Rodgers

Can John save the Statue of Liberty and keep from getting kicked off the team and out of the Academy?

The Dunes by A.R.K. Watson

“The Dunes” raises questions that are relevant in any marriage: not just for the creepy, otherworldly couple who venture onto a lonely island to set up camp near prehistoric sand dunes for the last time.

Comet Dust by C.D. Verhoff

A Catholic end-of days inspired by the private revelations of the saints.

Rachel’s Contrition by Michelle Buckman

After the loss of her child, Rachel goes insane but she must pull her mind back together to solve a murder and save her own life.

Freedom & Responsibility in “Citizen of the Galaxy” by Robert Heinlein

One of the masters of science fiction delivers a story exploring the limits of freedom and the ongoing battle against fallen human nature.

Finnian and the Seven Mountains (Vol. 1) by Philip Koslowski, Michael Lavoy, and Jim Fern

Join Finnian as his quest for a legendary sword takes him to the monks of Skellig Michael, a real life inspiration for the Jedi temple.

Desperate Forest: The Forest Tales Series, Book 1 By Cece Louise

This RomCom fantasy adventure explores a princess discovering the realities of life outside of her kingdom and what true love is really made of.