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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929 entries.
Amanda from Rochester, NY wrote on September 29, 2022
Hi, Mr. Coville!

Back in the day (the 90s in this case) I read my copy of Into the Land of the Unicorns so much it eventually went to pieces. Never forgot the series and tracked down each of the new books as they came out to happily lose myself in Luster all over again. Glad to see that the reworked series includes ebooks so I can have my nostalgia reads in a less tangible but possibly more durable form. Can't replicate that Scholastic paper smell though.

You're one of the reasons I'm still into fantasy as a genre and always keep an eye out books with unicorns (or karkadann and qilin). I'm a bookseller now and every so often I field questions from teachers looking for your books to tempt their students into reading (or to read to them). Usually they read The Magic Shop books as kids and want to share the joy - Jennifer Murdley's Toad and Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher are the most frequently requested. The latter was also a book I read until the pages fell out and one of the reasons most of my childhood drawings were dragons.

Any plans to reprint Bruce Coville's Book of...Aliens, Ghosts, Magic, Monsters, Nightmares, Spine Tinglers, and their respective sequels? Thank Scholastic book fairs for all those being part of my childhood too. Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark and the various offshoots do well with kids today as do the reprints Goosebumps. I hit your stories and those at about the same age.

Hope this finds you well. Thanks for all the stories and keep being awesome!
Reply by Bruce Coville
Hi, Amanda -

Many thanks for this lovely message (and apologies for taking so long to reply - been a rough month here).

I love knowing that you have such fond memories of my books. Being able to bring back the Unicorn Chronicles has been both a challenge and a joy. I am almost done with the revisions of the final volume, and hope to have it out before the end of the year.

Doing those Scholastic anthologies was a wonderful experience, and I am always impressed by how fondly people remember them. Alas, I think a reprint of any of them is unlikely, partly because we would have to do a whole new round of contracts for each story.

Speaking of that sort of spooky thing, may I wish you a Happy Halloween!

All best,
Sara from Toledo, Ohio wrote on September 7, 2022
I loved your books growing up! Especially the My Teacher is an Alien Series. I can’t wait till my niece and nephew are older so I can start buying books for them.
Reply by Bruce Coville
Hi, Sara -

Thanks for this . . . I take enormous delight in knowing that my original readers are bringing in another generation! Thanks for remembering the stories.

Deborah Powell from Easley, SC wrote on September 3, 2022
Hi Brice,
I first discovered your work about 13 years through our local library. "The Unicorn Chronicles" is one of my favorite book series of my entire reading/listening life. So much so that I purchased the entire series on audiobook after listening through the library copies multiple times. I still regularly recommend it to readers of all ages (just mentioned it in a Facebook group this past week, actually) and listen to the whole set every year or two. Really excited to see a couple short stories on here that I haven't read, and I'm eager to read them.

Do you know if "The Last Hunt" was ever printed in hardback? I have "Into the Land of the Unicorns," "Song of the Wanderer," and "Dark Whispers" in hardcover and was hoping to round out my print collection with a hardback, but thus far I've only been able to track down paperbacks of "The Last Hunt."

Lastly, I wanted you to know that you've been an encouraging and inspiring influence on my own writing journey, and I look forward to reading more from you.
Reply by Bruce Coville
Hi, Deborah -

Many thanks for this message. I love knowing how much the Unicorn Chronicles have meant to you. And I especially love knowing that you enjoy the audiobook editions, since creating those was both a massive undertaking and a total labor of love!

Your question about THE LAST HUNT is a bit puzzling, as it was ONLY published in hardcover. Scholastic never did a paperback edition, which is why it is so rare (there are only about 17,000 copies in the entire world!) The only thing I can think of is that you might have what is called an ARC (Advanced Readers Copy) which is something the publisher creates to send to reviewers and bookstores, but is not meant for actual sale. (A lot of them get sold anyway, of course. . . )

I take great delight to know that I have provided encouragement in your own writing journey. This is a pass along kind of thing, as there were writers I admired and respected (Lloyd Alexander, for example) who provided the same experience for me. I am honored to be doing so for another generation.

Wishing you good luck with your writing,
Bruce Coville
Marcia Wines from Monrovia wrote on August 18, 2022
Mr. Coville,
Since August 3rd, I have attempted to contact you three times through your “Contact” page of your website to no avail. I was beginning to become concerned… Then today, I clicked on your “Guest Book” page and discovered two entries dated August 8th and 11th which filled me with hope!
Even though this letter is both praise and book request, I shall try to submit it here in the hopes of a reply!
Sincerely, Marcia Wines

Dear Mr. Coville,
And when it was announced by The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) that our beloved Monarch Butterfly has now been added to the Endangered Species List, the very first thought (for real!) that entered my mind was your book The Prince of Butterflies. Despite my husband and my herculean efforts to garden for wildlife, your book needs to be in the hands of so many others, now, more than ever!

My quest for hardbound copies led me to your website, where lo and behold, not only was The Prince of Butterflies available but they are on sale, giving me the rare opportunity of buying them for everyone on our Christmas list!

Couple of questions –

Do you have 24 copies available?

Are the sale books also available to be autographed?

Finally, yet most importantly, many I take this opportunity, Mr. Coville, to share with you an article that I had written for Cross Reference, the newsletter of Fairfax County Virginia Public Libraries?
It had been written in April of 2008, as I sat there mesmerized, listening to you speak at the Great Books Consortium In Baltimore, feverishly trying to commit your powerful, poignant and profound words to paper!

And then you did something that I had only fleetingly hoped for, only wistfully dreamed of, as you imparted your wisdom to this star-struck audience of librarians.

At the end of your presentation you told us that now you were going to read to us the favorite book that you written.

And page by page and word by word you read The Prince of Butterflies …

Holding my personal copy, I gratefully smiled as I rose to give you a standing ovation!
I entitled my article -
Affirmation from Bruce Coville
Contemplating the summer reading program yet to come…on one of those absolutely harried days of non-stop reader’s advisory when you feel that your brain has been so addled that you wonder if you can even remember your name, it would be wise to contemplate the words of noted children’s author, Bruce Coville, whom I had the distinct pleasure of hearing speak at the Great Books Consortium in Baltimore this past April 1st.
“Librarians are Keepers of the Book, storytellers, story givers, People of the Book, whose sacred trust is leading children to books. American childhood has changed from viewing children as helping the family survive, to viewing them as objects of love, to now viewing them as consumers and that is very hard on their hearts.
However, the right story to the right child is like an arrow to the heart, filling a child’s reality with possibility and hope. And in this day of scandal-filled fallen heroes, books offer children the last refuge of good character helping them answer “Who do I want to be like?”
Within stories are the tools to save our world, drawing people together by honing their skills of empathy. Our challenge then is to give children these stories and then to live by the stories we give them, healing ourselves to heal the world.”
Empowering yet humbling words from an author that regales us with the likes of unicorns and teachers that are aliens! But, oh, do read Bruce Coville’s The Prince of Butterflies for a different perspective of this endearing author.

Marcia Wines
Reston Regional Library April 21, 2008
Reply by Bruce Coville
Dear Marcia -
First, my apologies for the shameful amount of time it has taken me to respond to this lovely message. (The Guestbook is always getting away from me!)

I'm baffled as to why your attempts to reach me through the "Contact Page" failed to reach me, as that is usually fairly reliable.

On the other hand, I am honored and flattered that the message I delivered at that conference back in 2008 still resonates with you so.

Now on to the bad news: THE PRINCE OF BUTTERFLIES is long out of print, and I only have about ten copies left. Though the book never did as well as we had hoped (I think the art, much of which is splendid, was not quite right for it) it remains a personal favorite for me. I often use the story when I do storytelling concerts.

Sorry, I wish I had better news to offer you on that front.

All good wishes, and extra wishes for the butterflies,
Bruce Coville
Jamie H from Lancaster PA wrote on August 11, 2022
Hi, Mr. Coville! Just wanted to let you know I've been reading your books since grade school (Also the library my late mother worked at has a hand-signed copy of My Teacher Glows in the Dark) and even today as an adult I'm still inspired by your work in my own writing endeavors! Thanks for writing so many of my childhood favorites!
Reply by Bruce Coville
Hey, Jamie-
Many thanks for this note. As I have grown older in this business I have come to believe authors go through three phases of hope/desire. First, you long to get published. Then you hope that the books will be successful and that people will enjoy them. And, finally, you hope that they will be remembered. So a message like this one means a great deal to me.
It is also very heartening to know that my work is providing inspiration for your own writing, as that was definitely the case for me with the writers that inspired me as a young reader. Good luck with your creative endeavors!

Bruce Coville
Katrina from Midwest wrote on August 8, 2022
Hello Bruce!! I am a long time fan of your Unicorn Chronicle series. I started reading your first one back when l was a teenager in the 1990's. I am now reading the last one..The Last Hunt. I must say l am truly enjoying it; even now, in my 40's. Do you think you will ever do a spin off from any of the characters in this series? And maybe start a whole new chronicles even if it doesn't entail unicorns?..All the best, Katrina
Reply by Bruce Coville
Hi, Katrina -

Many thanks for this message. I am especially gratified to know that THE LAST HUNT is holding up for you. I took so long to finish the series (And felt so guilty about it for so long!)

I am republishing the books now in slightly revised editions (I split LAST HUNT into three smaller books) and working with them has fired me up with thoughts of possibly doing new volumes. I do love that world!

Ashley Lauren Cornejo from West Sacramento wrote on July 25, 2022
Hello, Mr. Coville.
I am trying to find a paper copy of book 6 "The Wounded Tree" within the Unicorn Chronicles, but I can only find the Kindle book. I was wondering if book 6 was ever released in paperback form, and are you still planning to release a seventh book?
Thank you!
Reply by Bruce Coville
Hi, Ashley -
I'm sorry for the delay. Shortly after we had vetted and uploaded the files for the Kindle edition I became quite ill, which knocked me seriously off-schedule. I'm (mostly) recovered now, and hope to complete the final corrections for the print version in time to upload it before the end of this week. I can't guarantee I will make that mark, but I do promise that it will be coming soon.
Again, my apologies for the delay.

All good wishes,
Bruce Coville
Emily from Newark, NJ wrote on July 9, 2022
Hi there Mr. Coville,

I read Into the Land of the Unicorns when I was in 3rd or 4th grade in 1999/2000, and thought I'd look you up to see what you're up to and tell you about how your books influenced me as a kid, and how special they were.

Into the Land of the Unicorns was my first real chapter book, and from then on I just couldn't stop reading, and writing. I've been writing creatively ever since. I remember being so amazed at how immersed I was in Cara's world, and how it felt like I had traveled to Luster, too. I read whatever I could from the series at my library, and then read Jeremy Thatcher Dragon Hatcher. I'll never forget that book either, because in 5th grade I had the version of the book with a tiny Tiamat next to an egg on the cover, and I tried to recreate that picture by drawing it myself. I was so proud of how it came out that I showed my teacher, asking if it was good, and she said, "I don't think it's good--I think it's incredible, and you are a real artist with a lot of talent."

I never stopped drawing after that, and hundreds of my first pictures were pictures of dragons. I put your name down every time someone asked me who my favorite author was, and when I did a report on my favorite author in 7th grade and wrote to you, you wrote back to me with a personalized letter. I was so thrilled! All of this is to say that I wouldn't be a writer, or an artist, today without those books.

I'm about to turn 31 in a few weeks, and a lot has happened since those days. But despite all of the craziness in the last 20 years, the whimsy, fantasy, and joy your books gave me all those years ago stayed with me. No matter how hard it got out there, I knew reading would always be there to enjoy. I write for a living now (but in a lawyer-y way and not the fun way), I have a digital painting canvas, and I've got folders full of planning for my first novel. It's been a dream of mine to inspire a kid the way you inspired me when I was a new kid in town, and poor enough that the library was where my parents took us for a fun weekend activity. I think about the kids growing up today, and I think they could use a little bit of joy and whimsy now more than ever, and I can only hope to give them a fraction of what you gave me! I've had a lot of stops and starts with writing over the years but remembering your books today, and all those memories, has reminded me how important fantasy and imagination is, no matter how old you are.

Anyway. I hope this wasn't too long or rambling, or too out of left field, haha. And there are new books in the Unicorn Chronicles! I can't believe it. You KNOW I'm going to have to get them haha--one day I want my own kids to read them, too. Thank you for all you do!

Emily P.
Reply by Bruce Coville
Hi, Emily -

Many thanks for this wonderful and thoroughly heart-lifting message! I cannot tell you how it delights me that Luster has stayed alive within your heart. Even more delightful is knowing that the books have inspired you to want to inspire children of the next generation. That is a truly beautiful and worthwhile goal, and I wish you much joy in the pursuit of it!

All good wishes,
Jennifer from Rochester, NY wrote on May 19, 2022
I discovered the Nine Tanleven books as a grade schooler just learning to read. I read (and re-read, and re-read...) them growing up. As an adult I found an old set at a book sale and have enjoyed the stories every bit as much as I did nearly thirty years ago. Some books just stay with you for the long haul. Thank you for these wonderful stories. Cheers!
Reply by Bruce Coville
Hi, Jennifer -

Many thanks for this lovely message. The Nina ("Nine") Tanleven books are very close to my heart, partly because I based Nine and her dad upon my daughter and myself. And their house is based on the house we were living in at the time I wrote them. It delights me to know that the books still hold up for you!

All best,
Rita from Seattle wrote on April 28, 2022
I first read Into the Land of the Unicorns years and years ago, and it's always been one of my favorites, so I've been trying to track down the books again in ebook format, as I need the text-enlargening features, as much as I prefer physical books. I found the first two and the 3rd-book-split-into-two easily, but I can't find The Last Hunt anywhere as an ebook. Does it not exist as an ebook? Will it ever be turned into one or more ebooks?
Thank you!
Reply by Bruce Coville
Hi, Rita -

The fourth book, THE LAST HUNT, will now be split into three parts, making them books 5, 6, and 7 and the revised series. Book 5 is now available, under the title of THE INVASION OF LUSTER. Book 6, which will be called THE WOUNDED TREE is almost ready. Then it's on to Book 7, which I have not yet titled, but which will reveal all the secrets and mysteries and wrap up the story. Hope you'll enjoy these!