Welcome to the Guestbook!

I’m always eager to read your comments about my books and stories, so please feel free to pitch in. Here are a few things for you to know:

1) I answer the messages here personally.

2) No message shows up here until I actually answer it to prevent spam and other inappropriate postings. So there will sometimes be a delay before your message posts, especially if I am traveling.

3) Teachers, a gentle request: Please do not have multiple children send me variants of the same message. A group email is much easier to respond to and not such a drain on my time. My thanks in advance for being alert to this.

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917 entries.
Tracy from Lewiston wrote on April 26, 2022
I have a question about the Unicorn Chronicles, it looks like your remarking them in smaller books (at least according to your sale page) and I just wanted to make sure I have them all! I have Into the Land of the Unicorns, Song of the Wanderer, Dark Whispers and The Last Hunt in hardback ,the ebook, the boy with silver eyes and the audiobook.
Reply by Bruce Coville
Hi Tracy -
Yep, you've got them all. I'm splitting up books 3 and 4 so that the new set will be more balanced. I've made some minor edits and changes but I think you are fine with the ones you have. There is one more short story - "The Guardian of Memory" - that you should probably get.

All best
BC
Kellan Morehouse from Hudson Falls wrote on April 4, 2022
Are you going to make more books?
Reply by Bruce Coville
I certainly hope so!!
Kelly from St. John's, NL wrote on February 12, 2022
Hello!!
I first read Into the Land of the Unicorn and Song of the Wanderer when I was in 5th grade. I was having a conversation with friends today about the most impactful books on our lives, and these two came to my mind immediately. They drove my interest in fantasy from that point on, and through a butterfly-effect have deeply influenced my life as an adult, even 20 years later (I still use a name from Song of the Wanderer as my username for everything online!). Imagine my surprise when I searched for the series online to find out that you've written three more books since then!! Can't wait to read them!
Reply by Bruce Coville
Hi, Kelly -

Many thanks for this delightful message. I have felt guilty for years over how long it took me to finish the Unicorn series. The only justification I have for the unconscionable lagtime is that I felt an urgent need to get it right! I hope they will live up to your expectations!

Many good wishes,
BC
Jeffrey R. Poulin III from Concord, NC wrote on December 6, 2021
I love your books. I became a fan because my mother in 1991 was giving the book Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher by her library teacher. It was the first book she ever read by herself, and she loved it so much that 26 years later when I was 6 she gave it to me for my birthday. We read it every night. When I was 10 I read it again all by myself.
I love your book because it has dragons and a sense of adventure. I loved the part when hatched the dragon Tiamat and all the trouble they got into. This book inspired me to make a little a book about a dragon named Havoc leaving his cave for the first time in a world without dragons, and he meets a dragon that lives in the ocean. I want to read more of your books, but Jeremy Thatcher will always be my favorit.
Reply by Bruce Coville
Dear Jeffrey -

First off, my apologies for taking so long to respond to this lovely message. The guestbook is supposed to send me a notification when anyone posts a new message, but sometimes the system messes up and I don't get the alert.

It makes me truly happy to know that both you and your mom have gotten such enjoyment from reading JEREMY THATCHER, DRAGON HATCHER. I have published over a hundred books, and if I had to guess which one will be around longest after I am gone, JEREMY would be the one I would point to.

It especially pleases me to know that you were inspired to write your own dragon book. I urge you to save that book - it will mean a lot to you in years to come!

All good wishes,
BC
Derek Knight from Catharpin, Virginia wrote on November 26, 2021
Dear Mr. Coville-

Thank you so much for writing and continuing to write such excellent books. The empathy and sensitivity you have for children in all types of family situations shines through your work, and was especially comforting to me as a child of divorce when most protagonists of the books I read either had married parents or were orphans.

Ten years after first picking up your BOOK OF NIGHTMARES I'm still freaked out by "There's Nothing Under the Bed," a true testament to your craft (and probably the story most responsible for setting me down the path of the horror fan, moreso than any other children's horror). I also loved your unicorn stories---both the Chronicles and A Glory of Unicorns. Your adamant insistence on unicorns as creatures of innocence and freedom was unique in my experience---as a teen and even now as a post-adolescent reader the trend seems to be that pure, sincere appreciation of magical creatures is for dorks, and that cool kids only read about unicorns (or dragons, or aliens) that are dangerous and "edgy."

Perhaps that's just nostalgia talking. What I mean to say is, your works have impacted me deeply, and now as a twenty-one-year-old I still hold a special place in my heart for them. The people who manage to make it to your website and work up the courage to leave a note in the guest book are but a fraction of the number you have touched in an immensely positive way.

I hope you and yours are in good health, and thank you again for being such a light in the world.
-Derek
Reply by Bruce Coville
Dear Derek -
First off, my sincere apologies for being so tardy in responding. The Guestbook is supposed to send me an email to alert me when someone posts here, but sometimes the system gets wonky and I don't find out. I am very sorry for the delay.
I got a kick out of your memories of "There's Nothing Under the Bed." I think it's the scariest story I ever wrote. (Years after she worked on it, my editor told me she still had nightmares about it sometimes!)
Your appreciation for the Unicorn Chronicles, and my portrayal of the unicorns, speaks to me deeply. I realized way back in high school that I was a "dork" and there really wasn't anything I could do about it, so I've tried to embrace that identity (which, despite the sneering attitude behind the term I think has a great deal of positive and good energy).
I truly appreciate this message. I hope you are well and thriving, and I wish you much joy in your life.

BC
Jennifer Reilly wrote on November 12, 2021
I've been reading the unicorn chronicles since I was in the 7th grade (1996). I still have my original copy of Into The Land Of The Unicorns. I recently started reading them to my 5 year old before bed and he is absolutely in love. His favorite character, of course, is the squijum.
I hadn't known that there was a fourth book and was very upset to see it was going for $100 on ebay. I'm SO excited that it's being re-released. I cannot wait to get to reading it with my son. We're just finishing up Dark Whispers, but I'm thinking of going back and reading Enter The Whisperer and Secret Of The Delvers.
I'm so thankful for this series and all the joy it brought me as a child and that it is now bringing my child!
Reply by Bruce Coville
Greetings, Jennifer!

Thanks for this lovely message. I cannot tell you how it delights me that you are reading this to your 5 year old and that he loves them. That said, I should warn you that as the series goes on it does become darker. I mean, the threat of Beloved is real, and it escalates.

Bringing back the series has been a true joy, but was also more difficult than I anticipated, as I am working diligently to make the stories even better and more cohesive!

Thanks for sticking with me for all these years! Also, please tell your son I said hello!

All good wishes,
BC
Ms. Bachmuth from Los Angeles wrote on November 8, 2021
Dear Bruce Coville,

Thank you for writing Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher. We love your adventurous and magical tale. We enjoyed reading about how Jeremy finds Mr. Elive’s Magic Shop and raises Tiamat.

Here are some of our favorite parts:

We loved the part when Tiamat visits the dinner table. We roared with laughter when Mr. Thatcher dunked his head in the mashed potatoes. We also liked the part where Tiamat gives the art teacher, Mr. Kravitz, a hot foot. Hilarious!
Finally, it was so humorous when Mary Lou gave Jeremy the Love Letter of Doom, but very embarrassing for Jeremy.

Here are a few questions we have:

1. Why is Tiamat’s egg multicolored, but Tiamat isn’t?
2. Why did Tiamat choose Jeremy?
2. What happens to Jeremy after the book ends? Will Jeremy have the connection with Tiamat until he dies?
4. What other books of yours do you recommend we read next? We have read The Monster’s Ring and Jeremy Thatcher.

We would love it if you could please try to write another book with Jeremy Thatcher in it. How about a book where Jeremy Thatcher gets the ring and Russell Crannaker gets Tiamat? A swapping book? Or, what if Jeremy meets Russell?

Sincerely,
Ms. Bachmuth’s Third Grade Class
Reply by Bruce Coville
Ahoy Ms. Bachmuth's Third Grade!

I am so delighted to know that you are enjoying JEREMY THATCHER, DRAGON HATCHER. I truly believe that out of the 105 books I have published, this is the one more likely to live on after I am gone.

It makes me happy to know that you enjoyed the dinner table scene, because I had so much fun writing it. It made me laugh out loud when I was working on it, which doesn't happen all that often!

About your questions:

1. Why is Tiamat’s egg multicolored, but Tiamat isn’t?
A. The egg is a swirl of colors because Tiamat is not finished developing. Once she has, her color settles.

2. Why did Tiamat choose Jeremy?
A. When Jeremy came into Mr. Elives' shop he was the right person at the right time. Because of his dad he had some knowledge about how to deal with animals, and also (and more important) he had an open heart!

3. What happens to Jeremy after the book ends? Will Jeremy have the connection with Tiamat until he dies?
A. I purposefully left that unanswered, so that each reader can fill in the answer for her or his self.

4. What other books of yours do you recommend we read next? We have read The Monster’s Ring and Jeremy Thatcher.
A. I would definitely say that you should go on to JENNIFER MURDLEY'S TOAD!

I do not know if I will ever writer another Magic Shop book. I do sometimes think about having some of the Magic Shop kids get together.

Thanks again for being such faithful readers. May your lives to come be filled with a bazillion fabulous books!

Your friend,
Bruce Coville
Ms. Bachmuth from Los Angeles wrote on November 5, 2021
Dear Bruce Coville,

The Monster’s Ring is an outstanding book! Our third grade class listened to your audio book. It was amazing how the actors acted out all the characters’ voices. Russell’s voice as a monster was perfect. The fact that this story is about Russel Crannaker and a dangerous ring inspired our class to write this letter to you. We loved many parts of this story. Here are some of our favorite parts:
1. When Russell was scaring all the children out of their pants at his school
2. Russell’s second twist of the ring where he grows fangs, horns, and fur
3. Russell’s adventure back home in his birthday suit

We have two questions for you:
Do Russell’s parents know that he turned into a beast with flames?
Will Russell ever use the ring again?

We would love to know if you could make a series of books for The Monster’s Ring. How about Jeremy Thatcher’s Ring?

You are a great author!

Sincerely,
Your Third Grade Readers
Reply by Bruce Coville
Hi there, Ms. Bachmuth's Class!

Thanks for the kind words about THE MONSTER'S RING. The book has a special meaning for me because it was the very first novel I published . . . and because it's where I found the Magic Shop, which has now been in 5 books altogether. Recording the audiobook version of it was a super fun project!

As to your questions:
1)Russell's parents do NOT know about his big transformation . . . and if Russell has his way, they never will!

2) There is a hint at the end of the book that Russell will not need to use the ring again . . . that he is going to have a transformation every time there is a full moon!

When the book was first published I wanted to write a sequel, but my editor was not interested. I felt bad about that, but then decided to write not sequels but "companion" books - other stories that start out with the Magic Shop. That actually turned out to be a pretty good plan.

Thanks for the message! Have a great November . . . and keep reading! (And listening!)

your friend,
Bruce Coville
Monnie Fishel from Summerville wrote on October 25, 2021
I began reading your books when my daughter was in elementary school. She is now 38 years old. We absolutely loved the Unicorn Chronicles. However we missed book 4. I just saw it, and can't wait to hear end of Cara's story. I have been rereading the first three books before reading the last one. My question is I have an original of Book III, Dark Whispers. Would it be better to read the new, revised book 3 before reading The Secrets of the Delver or is it OK to just read Dark Whispers then Book 4? Thank you from a long time lover of you books, Monnie Fishel
Reply by Bruce Coville
Hi Monnie -

It fills me with delight to know that you have held on to your love for the Unicorn Chronicles for all these years! Thank you.

To explain the new arrangement: as I bring the books back into print on my own, I am following a suggestion from my designer and splitting up the "big books" to make for a more uniform set. DARK WHISPERS has been split into two parts - ENTER THE WHISPERER and SECRET OF THE DELVERS. The first part has minor tweaks but SECRET (which is now Book 4) has 5 new chapters. They do not substantially alter the story, but the do cover what Lightfoot was doing during the second half of DARK WHISPERS, which was sadly missing in the original book.

What was originally Book 4 (THE LAST HUNT) was a single enormous volume that I am not splitting into three parts. Thus, they will become books 5, 6, and 7 in what will end up being the first uniform edition of the Chronicles. Book 5 (tentatively titled THE INVASION OF LUSTER) will be gong to the designer soon. It has one new chapter that fills in a transfer of information between Lightfoot and Ian Hunter.

I just finished a first pass read of Book 6, which I have not yet titled, which will be the middle section of the original LAST HUNT. Tomorrow I will begin a first pass read of the final third (again still untitled) with the goal of having all three of them out and available before the end of the year. Some of the earlier volumes required far more editing and revising than I had anticipated. I am hoping these final three will be more tractable, though I will probably be writing 15 to 20 pages of new material for Volume 6.

WHEW! I hope that wasn't too confusing. It's been a long process, but I have loved being back in Luster, working with these books again, and bringing them to a new level of consistency and polish!

All good wishes

BC
Sarah Ferrara from CLAREMORE, OK wrote on October 10, 2021
Hello old friend! As far I’m concerned you have always been around my library. (I just hit the big 40!) I toted Jeremy Thatcher Dragon Hatcher with me from childhood into adulthood- from apartment to first house. I’m a natural reader - so you can imagine my worry when my first born child- my precious son- hated independent reading. Begging, pleading, bribing- I tried it all. I felt like a failure. This continued until one day I decided to gift him my copy of JTDH. The rest my dear friend is history. He now devours books, and has about worn out the much loved copy. So I’m ordering him a new copy and one for my daughter- who seems to have inherited the reluctant reader gene. I’m sure your magic can set her on the path of reading too! The original one will be wrapped up and tucked away in my trunk- maybe I will need it again some day for grandkids!

Thank you for your presence in my life- I wish you so much happiness!

Love and admiration,
Sarah
Reply by Bruce Coville
Dear Sarah -
First off, my apologies for not responding more promptly. The Guestbook has been, shall we say, erratic in notifying me of new messages!
That said, I cannot tell you how it delights me that JEREMY has stayed with you all these years . . . and even more that it was the book that opened the door of reading for your son. Seriously, what better affirmation could an author want than to know that a book has converted a non-reader?!
I hope that it will work the same magic for your daughter.
One of the best things about living as long as I have now (there are some definite downsides) is being a two-generation author. I love being passed from parent to child!
Please tell your young'uns I said hello!

All best
BC