Review: The Eighth Birthday Wish

The Eighth Birthday Wish by Bruce E. Arrington is a children’s fantasy about a little girl named Sophia who seeks a magical birthday gift from the residents of the Great Rock Faery cave.

Sophia Enters the Great Rock Faery Cave
Sophia Enters the Great Rock Faery Cave

Young Sophia is surrounded by siblings that sing well, but she cannot carry a tune. Determined to become the finest songstress, she goes on a journey with her parents to the Great Rock Faery cave.

Only she can go inside and pick the singing voice of her dreams from one of the faerie. Problem is that none of them have a suitable voice. Sophia discovers a faerie in a most unusual situation. The little girl then learns the rewards of unselfishness, which is the best birthday gift of all.

The Eighth Birthday Wish is a story told in rhyme, and lavishly illustrated with Sophia’s adventures. Lita could not wait to see how the little girl’s dilemma in the Great Rock Faery cave turned out. The simple story delivered a satisfying conclusion.

Fantasy fans of all ages would enjoy this gem of a tale. Lita shall look around her garden and see if it has an entrance to the charming Great Rock Faery cave.

The Eighth Birthday Wish on Amazon US

The Eighth Birthday Wish on Amazon UK

The Eighth Birthday Wish on Goodreads

Bruce E. Arrington on Goodreads

Bruce E. Arrington website

Bestiarum Vocabulum: Wee Wildebeest

The Bestiarum Vocabulum is the wizard’s encyclopedia of faerie beasties and mundane crossovers living in the lake and forest near Lita’s castle.

Wee Wildebeest
Wee Wildebeest

wee wildebeest [wē wildə bēst ] noun,  c.1835; < Afrikaans  wildebees < Dutch  wildebeest, means “wild”  wild + beest  “beast”; also gnu.

  1. Denizen of the Clockpunk Wizard world.
  2. A herbivore herd animal that eats grasses containing trace levels of ambient magic. Mature females stand six hands high (24 inches) at the withers; males reach nine hands high (36 inches). Males weigh 4-6 stone (55-75 pounds), and females are 3-5 stone (44-64 pounds). Because wee wildebeest are not sentient magical creatures, they cannot cast spells. Predators hunt them for the traces of residual magic in their flesh. Wild wee wildebeest thrive in the sere interior grasslands on large floating islands. Heat demons and wild wee wildebeest congregate for protection from predators. Grassland satyrs were the first to domesticate wild wee wildebeest.
  3. Personages: The wild herds on Veldt Island in Ephraim’s Curious Device, and the domesticated herds on the Raeburn Island ranchland in Old Bony Blue Eyes.
  4. See “Bestiarum Vocabulum: Grassland Satyr

Dramatis Personæ: Probability

The Dramatis Personæ is the roster of conjurers and sentient magical creatures staying in the many rooms, grottos, and byways of Lita’s castle. Here is an entry in the guest book for the Clockpunk Wizard Wing.

Miss Probability
Miss Probability

Probability [prä-bə-ˈbi-lə-tē] proper noun, c. 1550;  ME probabilis from probare to test < L probābilitās; also Luck’s Child, Luck’s Brat (derogatory), Daughter of Fickle Numbers, Baby Needs New Shoes

  • Profession: Heir-apparent for the Personification Office of Lady Luck
  • Race: Human, female, nine-year-old child
  • Appearance: Blue eyes, blond hair, medium build
  • Full Name: Amabel Probability Juliana Luck
  • Formal Title: Lady Luck to Be
  • Honorifics: Miss Luck, Miss Probability
  • Education: Homeschooled
  • Milieu: Probability is a denizen of the Clockpunk Wizard world
Probability's Home is a Castle in the Upper Wager Meadows of Fluke Island
Probability’s Home is a Castle in the Upper Wager Meadows of Fluke Island

Probability is the oldest child of Sorceress Lady Luck and Death’s Wizard Mephistopheles.

Her younger brother is Chance Luck, and her family awaits the arrival of a second daughter. Probability also has a grandmother, Sorceress Amabel, who was the previous Lady Luck.

Because the magic for the Death Personification Office is harmful to children, and her parents are estranged, Probability lives on floating Fluke Island with her mother and brother. Their home is a sprawling casino and castle complex in the Upper Wager Meadows. She has not met her father. Probability plans to visit him where he lives on Undying Island, beyond the rim of their plate-shaped ocean world, when she is old enough to survive the journey.

Probability is Gifted in Mathematics, Language, and the Magical Arts
Probability is Gifted in Mathematics, Language, and the Magical Arts

Probability is a precocious child in mathematics, language, and the magical arts. Her well-to-do mother hires the best tutors for the non-magical aspects of her children’s education.

Lady Luck personally teaches Probability and her brother the magical arts. Her mother anticipates that Probability will attend the Agatha University of Magical Arts and Sciences, and become the most powerful human sorceress of her generation.

As many girls are wont to do, Probability adores unicorns and horses. Her mother maintains a horse stables, and accompanies the children on frequent equestrian outings. Because unicorns need special care, Lady Luck has not yet acquired these magical sentient equines for Fluke Island, despite her daughter’s constant requests.

Lady Luck's Daughter is Called "Baby Needs New Shoes"
Lady Luck’s Daughter is Called “Baby Needs New Shoes”

Probability is not allowed in her mother’s casino until she becomes of age. Nonetheless, the little girl has a flawless mental ability to compute odds, calculate entropy decay rates, and mathematically predict when her brother will bring up a yucky boy’s topic during dinner.

Find out more about Probability’s adventures in these Clockpunk Wizard stories:

Review: Thought Symbols Magick Guide Book

Thought Symbols Magick Guide Book by Colin G. Smith is a nonfiction how to book for transforming conscious desires into graphical representations, and using the subconscious to make them come true.

Use Meditation to Enact Symbols
Use Meditation to Enact Symbols

Thought Symbols Magick Guide Book describes the origin of using symbols, also called Sigil Magick. The book gives a systematic guide of how to turn positive statements into pictorial representations that anyone can draw. Gentle Reader then uses meditation, or other techniques, to enact these symbols. Within weeks, the results manifest themselves as positive changes to the Gentle Reader’s life.

This easy to follow book was free of mysticism and vague references to obscure topics that make others of its ilk tiresome to get through. What Lita liked most about the book was its emphasis on manifesting positive desires, rather than dragging down the psyche with “I don’t want this” catalysts. Another likable aspect of this book was how to merge the thought symbols approach into a better-balanced lifestyle.

Self-improvement seekers looking for a pragmatic approach for turning positive motivations into life events would enjoy Thought Symbols Magick Guide Book. Lita recommends it for Gentle Readers who want the good in life to come true.

Thought Symbols Magick Guide Book on Amazon US

Thought Symbols Magick Guide Book on Amazon UK

Thought Symbols Magick Guide Book on Goodreads

Colin G. Smith on Goodreads

Colin G. Smith website and blog


Praised by Readers’ Favorite with a 5 Star Review: Lita Burke’s Ephraim’s Curious Device

Ephraim's Curious Device – 5 Star Review by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
Ephraim’s Curious Device – 5 Star Review by Jack Magnus for Readers’ Favorite

Readers’ Favorite recently read Lita’s fantasy novella, Ephraim’s Curious Device, and awarded it with a lovely 5 star review.

In Ephraim’s Curious Device, a wizard seeks a magical thingummy to free his kidnapped familiar. It is the second story in Lita’s Clockpunk Wizard series, where wizards with ~twisty~ magic live on a plate-shaped ocean world. The wizards fly their fantastic airships between islands that float far above the sea. Here is what the Readers’ Favorite reviewer had to say:

The Clockpunk Wizard series is a marvelous and magical melding of steampunk with epic fantasy that is fresh, original and really quite exciting.

Ephraim’s Curious Device is Book 2 of Lita Burke’s epic fantasy series, The Clockpunk Wizard. Kadmeion, a young wizard, and Sir Bright, his Metal-Man and companion, have been summoned by Lord Hissalumieon of Mevil City. When they get there, the lord and his wizard, Nob, inform them of the quest Lord Hissalumieon needs them to complete. Read more of the review…

Ephraim's Curious DeviceRead Chapter 1 of Ephraim’s Curious Device for FREE now.

Watch the Ephraim’s Curious Device book trailer.

The Ephraim’s Curious Device e-book is available now with instant gratification for Kindle US/UK, Nook, and Kobo.

Curious how the Clockpunk Wizard adventures began? See how Kadmeion befriended a very unusual familiar in Forever Boy–read Chapter 1 now for FREE.

Continue your explorations of the Clockpunk Wizard world in Old Bony Blue Eyes–read Chapter 1 now for FREE.

He Bewitched It with Look Away

Lanith and Nyle Went to Rune School to Learn About Tredan's Days as an Enchanter
Lanith and Nyle Went to Rune School to Learn About Tredan’s Days as an Enchanter

Lita takes Gentle Reader to the Enchanters of Sye world today, with an excerpt from her story, Tredan’s Bane.

Magical charms vendor Lanith, and Enchanter Nyle, have joined forces to search for Lanith’s missing husband Tredan. The two sleuths journeyed to the Rune School, and are now examining the various materials that Tredan left behind from his days as an Enchanter.

They discover that Tredan suffered from a long-term compulsion spell cast by the Enchanters’ adversaries, the Church Magicians. He left behind a charm that the Enchanter Grandmasters have safeguarded until now. Because the charm will harm any Enchanter that touches it, Lanith will check it while Nyle stands a safe distance away.

Nyle produced the case containing the tool set he had used earlier. He handed her a pair of magnifying spectacles. She removed the silk ties from the charm bundle, unfolded the sumptuous black velvet cloth, and spread it on the table. Tredan had created this charm under the pressure of a Church spell. He knew its magic was forbidden by the Enchanters. It must have been a horrible contradiction for him. Her heart was breaking.

Nyle Handed Lanith a Pair of Magnifying Spectacles
Nyle Handed Lanith a Pair of Magnifying Spectacles

A glance confirmed it was Tredan’s artistry. Lanith selected a tool. She slipped on the spectacles and adjusted the magnification. Lanith paused.


“Yes, Lanith?”

“Does the exposed charm affect you?”

“No effect.”

“Then it will stay dormant until fed essence. It’s one of Tredan’s standard designs. I don’t want to wake the interior spells. Instead, I’ll draw out the charm’s remaining essence. It’ll tell me plenty.”

She’d have this chance to taste his Enchanter essence after all. Lanith touched the charm with a tool, cleared her mind, and took the dot of her husband’s Enchanter magic from the charm.

Lanith Took the Magic from the Charm
Lanith Took the Magic from the Charm

Oh, Tredan.

What are these nasty spells doing inside of your lovely charm?

Lanith removed the tool, tucked it away, and set aside the spectacles. She clasped her shaking hands on the tabletop. Her tears came as a silent and anguish-filled trickle. Nyle put his hand on Lanith’s shoulder, leaned down, and pressed his cheek against hers. His sweet Enchanter essence warmed her skin. It soothed her heartache.

“What did you find?” Nyle asked.

“Tredan’s charm kills an Enchanter. It senses the closest Uslar Ring, extracts the Enchanter’s spirit, and captures the ghost.”

“Not even Sciomancers hold unwilling ghosts.”

“There’s more. Once a ghost is inside, this charm will animate the Enchanter’s body and allow the charm’s holder to control it. The holder can then command the Enchanter’s magic.”

Animating a Dead Enchanter
Animating a Dead Enchanter

“That’s terrible,” Nyle said.

“I knew nothing about Tredan’s proclivity with this ugly magic. Murder? Animating a dead Enchanter? I should have felt it with my magical empathy.”

“His Divine’s spell was thorough. It was impossible for you to have known.”

“This charm denigrates Tredan’s magic career,” Lanith said. “My heart doesn’t believe it. But the evidence is here.”

“The bad news is he’s written more spells after this one. Have you seen him with a journal?”


“Then he bewitched it with Look Away.”

(Tredan’s Bane excerpt Copyright 2012 by Lita Burke. All rights reserved.)

Read more in Chapter 1

View the book trailer on YouTube

Tredan’s Bane on Amazon US

Tredan’s Bane on Amazon UK

Tredan’s Bane on Smashwords, Kobo and Goodreads

Finished: Glitter Ponies

Welcome to Lita’s castle here in the Northern Realms. Step into her magical laboratory and see what’s on the slab.

A Fairy in Glitter Ponies
A Fairy in Glitter Ponies

Lita is happier than a dragon that has sniffed too much fairy dust. She has finished her next story, Glitter Ponies.

In this Clockpunk Wizard tale, Lady Luck’s young daughter helps Wizard Kadmeion and his assistant Sir Bright discover the cause of a mysterious unicorn illness. Our magic men face the most dangerous challenge of their budding wizardry-for-hire careers—girlfriends. All three learn that when they mix wizardry, luck, and unicorns, love is deliciously unpredictable.

A Glitter Pony on Wuddlekins Island
A Glitter Pony on Wuddlekins Island

Electronic pigeons have whisked Glitter Ponies off to the proofreader, editor, and beta readers. These clever people already visit with the wee glitter ponies, mad doves, and unicorns on Wuddlekins Island.

No time to rest.

Lita will brew a cup of tea, and scheme some marketing madness to get her new story out to Gentle Reader. Watch her blog for the book’s release date, and other details about the wizard’s curious vacation to the elf-kind floating island with the sparkly horses.

Read the Glitter Ponies back cover blurb.

Also see:

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