Cover Image: Dark Hedges, Wizard Island, and Other Magical Places That Really Exist

Dark Hedges, Wizard Island, and Other Magical Places That Really Exist

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Member Reviews

Dark Hedges, Wizard Island, and Other Magical Places That Really Exist by L Rader Crandall is currently scheduled for release on March 3 2020. From a lost city in the desert to a cave alight with thousands of glowworms, learn about some of the most unusual places on earth and the myths, legends, and history behind each of them! Looking at places like The Skeleton Coast in Namibia, Wizard Island in the United States, and The Fairy Tale Route in Germany, This book takes young readers on a journey around the world to real places that sound straight out of fantasy. Featuring both natural and man-made wonders, this travel book combines history and storytelling to explore the far reaches of the earth.

Dark Hedges, Wizard Island, and Other Magical Places That Really Exist takes stories from history and legends and connects them to the places they are about. The history of castles, sieges, and wizard origins are shared with the information about the location you can visit that is tied into these stories. Some of these stories I had heard before, but many were new to me. I thought the tone was conversational and matter of fact, making the text accessible and enjoyable to readers. I liked that the locations were from all around the world, and no culture or group of people were set apart as bad or other- which often happens in historic or legend based text. The photography was stunning, and I adored the detailed bibliography- citing sources and encouraging further reading in the process always makes me happy even if I know a good number of readers are likely to ignore this section.
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Since this is not the full manuscript I wonder how much more we are not given.  I felt like the concept was very interesting. It is certainly a different approach to travel than a straightforward travel book.  I felt like the stories and history that is wrapped up in them do create a seductive pull towards some of these places.  I have been to a number of them.I would however would have liked to have them expounded on more.  Perhaps the information about each place could be widened a bit. I do think photos on a kindle are a waste.  This would be more interesting and easier to read in print form.
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Travel, myths/legends. A collection of places, some are one page intro/story and at least one photo.
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While it's a nice little introduction to some of the "magical" places in the world, it's definitely more of a coffee table book. I'd love to see this one in printed form, because the page designs are gorgeous and it's clear to see the intent of how it should be presented. Doesn't really work as an ebook unfortunately.
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This book is really great fun. You'll learn a ton of interesting facts and perfect for fans of fantasy and nonfiction alike. If you wished the settings from stories like of Lord of the Rings or Grimm's Fairytales were real, then this is the book for you.
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As a child, I always enjoyed reading about myths, and legends, especially of other places, and this book is no exception. I think it's wonderful that the author L. Rader Crandell, has created such a wonderfully magical place, for young children, and some of us youngish adults too!
I love the thoughtfulness of researching a place or people, to create a picture, and story, to pull the reader in, and get them eagerly turning the pages, to find the next exciting destination. 
I have a few grandchildren myself, who would be eager to read this, and I would certainly like to re-read this book, but in another format. 5 stars from me!
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Kids and middle-grade readers love myths and legends, so this book’s seamless combination of folklore with factual information is lovely.  The fanciful backstories combine with stunning pictures to take the reader on a tour of the mystical world.  The idea that little magic can be found here in the seemingly mundane world will appeal to all readers. Famous historical sites are enriched by the cultural legends that surround them and this book will have readers yearning for travel.
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Rating- 3.5

This book is kind of like a grandma's book which tells you somewhat mythic, somewhat real stories and makes you wonder. It has real places and a story to explain that place, a magical, or somewhat hard to belief. 

There is an explanation of Taj Mahal in India, so I know that explanation is true. But I can't tell about other places as they seem quite hard to believe like that of Lapland in Finland, or the Antwerp in Belgium or the Avenue of Baobabs in Madagascar but its still exciting to read about them and know the common folklore that continues.

If you are looking for a bed time story for kids or just a curious read, you might want to pick this up.
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As someone who adores reading fantasy stories and exploring the world, this book gave me a lot of places to add to my travel lust bucket list.
Dark Edges show us a lot of magical places that exist around the world, the myths and history surrounding those places, for example the Tower of London or the Great Blue Hole, giving us wanderlust of how such beauty can exist in our world. And for those who want to know more, it also has a bibliography so we can know where to search a bit more about the places and history behind them.
It's perfect for fantasy lovers, and it will make a perfect gift for my friends when it comes out- then we can add more trips to our future!
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Three and a half stars.  Neither completely useful nor completely useless, this book acts as an impetus to get you to some of the more mystical and mythic places on this planet.  I've been to six of the subjects, but there's certainly scope for me to be interested in many of the other places, whether they be a man-made edifice, or some magical location in nature that's steeped in legend.  It's certainly got shortcomings – why mention the Dark Hedges and ignore some TV programme or other it was filmed for? - and some chapters the writing, dramatising the folklore about the place, is a bit ropey and then some.  But it's generally OK – the pictures are fine, and while it seems a trivial subject it will add to quite a few bucket lists.  Especially as it mentions a place where lawn bowling features pins (the rest of the outside world has a jack ball to aim at), and it features the world's only evidence of a hot air balloon flight featuring an out and return leg, where the balloon can do a complete one-eighty against the wind.  Now that is a place of wonder.
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This book was created for younger folk, but curious grown-ups will also find it enchanting. It covers a great variety of exotic spots all over the world. Some of them are well known, such as the Tower of London, the Matterhorn, and Easter Island. Quite a few others I had never heard of before, including the Waitomo Glowworm Caves in New Zealand, the Great Blue Hole in Belize, and the Avenue of the Baobabs in Madagascar (where I learned that the trunks of the baobab trees can store more than thirty thousand gallons of water).

For each location there are a few pages of text including myths, folklore, and history. It's fascinating to learn how cultures all over the world have come up with fantastical explanations for the way natural wonders came to exist. Each site also gets one or two pages of gorgeous full-page color photos to whet your appetite for further exploration.

You'll find everything from the creepy (Komodo dragons) to the romantic (Taj Mahal) in this book.
I especially enjoyed reading about Lapland, where you can view the "fox fires"(Northern lights) up to 200 nights per year. You can even sleep in a glass igloo designed to let you watch the light show while lying in your cozy bed. As a fan of gee-whiz information, I was tickled to learn that the Laplanders (Sami people) have a special unit of distance unique to their traditional mode of travel. One "poronkusema" is the distance you can go before a reindeer has to stop and pee.

If you have a kid who dreams of world travel, they'll love this book. It also has a nice bibliography at the end with suggested resources online and in print for further study about each locale.
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I am a huge fan of myths, legends and stories from around the world.  I am also fascinated by geography, wonders of the world and finding new places to visit.
This book ticks all those boxes for me.  I read it on my kindle which doesn't do justice to the photos and design of the book, but this encourages me to buy it once published!

Throughout this book you will learn of spectacular places in the world, some that can be visited and others with an element of danger to them.  The places are described via myths, legends and stories about them.  Interspersed with this are photos of the locations.

I was particularly interested in Skeleton Coast in Namibia, The Giant's Causeway in Ireland and Iceberg Alley in Canada.  
I can see this book being incredibly popular with children of all ages.  It offers a fantastic look into wonders of the world, their legends and provides children with a reason to travel the world.  
It would make a brilliant gift!
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