About the Book
Book: Wellspring of Life
Author: Allen Brokken
Genre: Middlegrade Christian Fantasy
Release date: November 4, 2022
Lauren (12), Aiden(9), and Ethan(5) have been reunited with their mortally wounded Father. But, they must take him to the Wellspring of Life before it’s too late.
The Dark One suffered a massive loss when twelve-year-old Lauren and her younger brothers Aiden and Ethan rescued their father from his clutches. However, the battle left Father horribly burned and barely hanging on to life. However, they found a clue to his salvation, the fabled Wellspring of Life.
As the children trek across the wildlife of the prairie, take sides against them to drive them off their path. Meanwhile, the giant known as Skull Crusher hunts them mercilessly while seeking to master the Darkness so he can destroy the family once and for all.
New friends join them in their quest to save Father, but they could also choose the Darkness and lead them further astray. The children’s mission to save their father will fail if they can’t find the Wellspring of Life in time. Will they have the faith to stay on the narrow path to redemption?
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About the Author
Allen Brokken is a teacher at heart, a husband and father most of all. He’s a joyful writer by the abundant grace of God. He began writing the Towers of Light series for his own children to help him illustrate the deep truths of the Bible in an engaging and age appropriate way.
He’s dedicated 18 years of his life to volunteer roles in children’s ministry and youth development. Now that his own children are off to college he’s telling stories and sharing clean humor on social media @allenbrokkenauthor, and through his website allenbrokkenauthor.com.
More from Allen
Wellspring of Life was a blast to write! As a writer, one of the things I’ve had to contend with is that my characters rarely take me on an easy linear path from the start of a book to the end. As I work on a story, things tend to develop organically, and suddenly, the story’s conclusion is very different than when I put the first word on a page.
That’s where I found myself at the end of book 4 in the series, Armor of God. Unfortunately, the devastating way Father was wounded wasn’t in the original outline of the story or the series as a whole. So I had to write a whole book to determine if he survived. I also wanted to collaborate with a good friend, K. A. Cummins, author of the Snowglobe Travellers series, on a possible crossover. These combined to let me try out some new things as a writer.
For example, Wellspring of Life has a glitter bomb, a murder of wicked crows, and no good egg stealin’ prairie dogs, to name a few of the twists and turns you’ll find in this book. The kids also meet some new friends along the way. I enjoyed this the most because the new kids reflect the personality of my kids’ best friends from our homeschool co-op. Despite these kids now being off to college, we all had fun brainstorming their roles in the story.
Speaking of homeschool co-op, the book is dedicated to the Wellspring Homeschool Co-Op that my kids grew up in. Their verse is Proverbs 4:23 “Guard your heart because it’s the wellspring of life.” I couldn’t find a more appropriate theme for this book that deals with the consequences of an unguarded heart.
So I hope you take the time to pick it up, because it’s a wild ride across the prairie with a message of redemption I’m sure your family will enjoy.
The Towers of Light series has found a special place in my heart. It is just the sort of story that I would have loved and devoured as a child, and the same is true now a few decades later! As such, these books are versatile enough that older children can read them on their own or adults can read them out loud. As author Allen Brokken notes, he intentionally identifies the adults in the stories by titles rather than proper names—such as Father, Knight Protector—in order to make them more relatable to the young audience. These books should be read in chronological order, as they do build upon each other and form an ongoing storyline. With that in mind, something that I greatly appreciate is the brief summary of each previous book that Brokken provides, along with a description of each faction from the story, a cast of characters, and notes on the world of Zoura. Placing these at the very beginning of each book is so helpful, and can also help to facilitate discussion between adults and children as they enter again into the battle of light vs. darkness, good vs. evil.
Book five in the Towers of Light series, Wellspring of Life returns readers to the perilous circumstances of siblings Lauren, Aiden, and Ethan, whose seriously injured Father is in desperate need of healing from the Wellspring of Life. They face even more challenges to their faith as they continue on their quest to find healing for their Father and to dispel the darkness from Zoura. In keeping with the series, each book becomes more intense and slightly more complex, and Wellspring of Life is no exception. I think that this encourages readers to truly think and to engage with the story and with the conflicts therein, right alongside the main characters. The Biblical teaching that Brokken infuses into Wellspring of Life is age-appropriate for a middle-grade audience and is interspersed cohesively into the narrative without feeling stilted or sanctimonious. Not all of the children’s friends share their devotion or even their faith, an accurate portrayal of real life, and these exchanges prove to be some of the most enlightening. The theme explored in Wellspring of Life is redemption, and Brokken demonstrates how redemption applies not only to those caught in Darkness, but to those who belong to the Light, as well.
Wellspring of Life, along with the rest of the series, blends the simplicity of rural life with the ingenuity of fantasy to create a story that fuels the reader’s imagination in all of the best ways. I love that Lauren, Aiden, and Ethan work hard and are respectfully obedient yet able to think for themselves, and that they will challenge authority when it goes against their conscience. Brokken portrays them as true children, with humorous quirks, and they do make mistakes, as do the adults. In our current world where many kids are hooked to screens all day long, I find it incredibly refreshing and heartening that the children in the Towers of Light series naturally spend their time outdoors and that they compassionately connect with animals and interact with each other face-to-face with truthful, honest discussions. The dialect and colloquialisms in this fifth book, in particular, are endearing and provide comic relief. We are all always learning while, hopefully, growing and maturing in our faith in Christ, and Wellspring of Life encourages readers of all ages to let their light shine no matter the circumstances.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.
My rating: 5 stars ♥♥♥♥♥
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Texas Book-aholic, November 10
Inklings and notions, November 11
Blossoms and Blessings, November 12 (Author Interview)
deb’s Book Review, November 12
Locks, Hooks and Books, November 13
Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, November 14
Adventures of a Travelers Wife, November 15 (Author Interview)
Library Lady’s Kid Lit, November 15
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 17
For Him and My family, November 18
A Reader’s Brain, November 19 (Author Interview)
For the Love of Literature, November 20
Lights in a Dark World, November 21
Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen, November 22 (Author Interview)
To celebrate his tour, Allen is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.