Dargo, Eco Hero!

A Treasury of Feel-Good Stories, Book1

Fiction - Short Story/Novela
85 Pages
Reviewed on 10/31/2021
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

I wrote Dargo as a way of dealing with my despair about the state of the world. Sick of all the doom and gloom, I created a humorous story. Dargo is primarily an adult fairy tale and is a tribute to all those who work so hard to make the world a better place - for you, I wanted to offer some respite, some laughter and cheer.

The story is based on my personal experiences and relationships. The Spirits I know personally. I wanted to introduce them to you in case you’ve not met them beforehand. You can introduce them to your children too (with care)—a fun way to teach them about nature. For more stories in this vein, see my ‘Treasury of Feel Good Stories' series.

Yay, Renaissance Women! Ladies, seeing as we weren't allowed to participate last time, let's get into big-time now! My official training is disease ecologist, but I am also a musician, illustrator, writer, and theatre producer. Intelligent fiction designed to inspire and entertain; novels and novellas that I describe as spirit-lifting. My fiction is character-rich and has been described as richly realized and deeply evocative. I do strive for this! I also create non-fiction and teach so as to help others discover their creative selves. I am an ardent conservationist and am working to create new habitat for wildlife. Character research is a favorite pastime - that's a real bone he's chewing on!

    Book Review

Reviewed by Natalie Soine for Readers' Favorite

Dargo, Eco Hero! by Karina McRoberts tells the fascinating story of Dargo, who works at Fischer and Co. Express Marketing Solutions and Event Management. Dargo is a delightful young man who some may consider a bit of a weird, geeky type of guy. Jake is the office hottie and they all report to the Superior Being, Mortimer Fischer. Mortimer puts Dargo on unpaid leave due to a lack of productivity. On his way home, Dargo is swept up in an unusual windstorm and lands at Jollypark, an amusement park he used to visit as a child but it is now abandoned. At the park, Dargo meets Flame, a nature spirit; Terran, a rock giant and spirit of the land; Vivian, the water spirit and Mariah, the spirit of the wind. With help from his previous colleague, Lucinda, Dargo has to find a way to save all of them – and all of us.

Dargo, Eco Hero! is by far one of the best and most unique books I have ever read, with a vitally important message. Karina McRoberts uses humor to address a serious subject – taking care of our planet, the environment, and the ecological system that we all rely on for survival. This poignant story is filled with fascinating characters, places, and events – all enhanced with beautiful pictures. I particularly enjoyed the way old and new songs and films are incorporated into the dialogue to enrich the characters. The smooth flow allows for quick reading which makes it perfect for parents to read to their children. Overall Dargo, Eco Hero! is a thoroughly enjoyable story that is highly recommended for young and old.

Astrid Iustulin

Things are not going very well for Dargo, the protagonist of Karina McRoberts' Dargo, Eco Hero! He is on the verge of losing everything and being fired from his job. However, there is an adventure that awaits him just around the corner, and that will unexpectedly change his life. It all starts when Dargo meets Flame, Terran, Vivian, and Mariah, four nature spirits. They will teach him to like natural phenomena again and to spread his love for them. How will it end? It will be great fun to find out.

The state of our planet is a problem that afflicts all of us, but so far, I have never found a story that could help raise awareness in the same pleasing and compelling way as Dargo, Eco Hero! McRoberts writes an engaging and entertaining story with a protagonist whose evolution is interesting to discover. At first, Dargo dislikes Flame and the other natural spirits (the moments in which he protests against the damages caused by fire and water with their respective spirits are hilarious). It is a pleasure to read how Dargo's way of thinking gradually changes and what he will do to help his new friends. I believe that Dargo, Eco Hero! is a book that will appeal to readers of all ages because it has something to teach both adults and children. It is with great enthusiasm that I recommend Karina McRoberts' book to others. I am sure they will be delighted to have found it as much as I am.

Deborah Lloyd

Dargo Fernandez is viewed as a weird man by his work colleagues. He has lost everything important to him – money, girlfriends, entire jobs, self-respect, the list goes on. Most importantly, he has lost heart. After being placed on leave, he left work and walked toward his home. Soon, he was at JollyPark, an abandoned amusement park of happy childhood memories. Although he was not sure how he got there, being miles away, more magic was in store for him. In the adult novella, Dargo, Eco Hero!, written by Karina McRoberts, a fascinating tale evolves as Dargo’s journey continues. As he encounters one Nature Spirit after another, he grows in environmental knowledge, learning about the goodness of fire, earth, water and wind. The Spirits also has a plan for him.

This book is correctly described as an adult fairy tale, and it is a quick read. At the same time, it is full of a nuanced narrative and situations and a complex story is told. This book is a unique way to call attention to the harm caused by humans to the planet. Each spirit describes the damage caused to their being, adding a different way of understanding climate change. The tale is brief, yet filled with great adventure of heartwarming and heartbreaking moments. This book could also be shared with elementary school-age children as a starting point for meaningful discussions. Author Karina McRoberts has crafted a captivating story in Dargo, Eco Hero! It is the first book of a new series, A Treasury of Feel-Good Stories. Readers will greatly anticipate additional books by this author, full of adventures, intriguing characters and important messages.

Amy K

Amy K.
4.0 out of 5 stars A Fun Read for All Ages!
Reviewed in the United States on February 10, 2020
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“Dargo: A Feel Good Novella” by Karina McRoberts truly is what it says, “a feel good novella”. I was not quite sure how to take this novella, but it overall really was quite cute. As the author states, this is basically like a fairy tale for adults, but it can also be read to children. My 9-year son is always concerned about the environment and truly seeks to make the world a better place for future generations, so I took the opportunity to read this story with him and he absolutely fell in love with the magical characters and the plotline as a whole. This really is a fun and well-rounded story that will leave you feeling refreshed and happy.


Stephen R. Wilson
5.0 out of 5 stars Fell in love with the characters
Reviewed in the United States on January 29, 2020
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Most everyone has been there before – rock bottom. Well, this is where Karina McRoberts first brings us as she opens this tale of a young man named – Dargo. Instead of going all melodramatic and going for the jugular with a sob story worth crying a river over, K. McRoberts takes us on a wild, outlandish adventure.

The adventure that she puts her characters through shows a level of innate humor and imagination that makes this story funny and absurd while still remaining down to earth. Everything about the story is relatable even when you know that it is highly unlikely that it will ever happen in real life. That’s what makes this short literary romp so enjoyable. It’s something that you can read from cover to cover - with a lot of laughs along the way.

When you get to the end, you know that you have fallen in love with the characters and their stories.

Amy Williams

Amy Williams
5.0 out of 5 stars A fun, quirky, light-hearted quick read
Reviewed in the United States on January 30, 2020
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Dargo isn’t the hardest worker in the world. He would rather do the least amount of work possible and have fun while doing it. However, this gets him in trouble at his job. He’s given a forceful, unpaid week off of work to muse on if working there is in his best interest. Whilst wandering, he meets a fortune teller at a local theme park. This lovely woman needs his help to free her. Will Dargo become a hero? Or will he fall flat?

This brief novella is packed with laughter, light-heartedness, and humor. I chuckled as I read about Dargo’s escapades and all of the vibrant characters he met. The writing is compact but brilliant, relatable and still somehow fantastical. I highly recommend this if you are looking for a great read before bed or to relax after a long week.

Grady Harp

Grady HarpTop Contributor: Children's Books
5.0 out of 5 stars ‘They call the wind Mariah…, or Nilch’I, or Dine’, Vayu…etc
Reviewed in the United States on February 23, 2020
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Australian author Karina McRoberts is a writer, artist, musician, theater producer, and conservationist – a rich tapestry from which to derive novels of magical realism and romance stories. Her writing style is infectiously fascinating, able to make such mysteries as time travel and associated strange romantic affairs not only credible and entertaining, but also an inspiration to strive for living to our creative potential.

Having read several of Karina’s books, expectations for this new novella were high: can an author of successful mysteries pen an adult fairy tale? The answer is a resounding Yes! She dips into the pleasure by introducing the titular character – ‘Dargo Fernandez loses everything. Money, keys, girlfriends, sporting contests, advancement opportunities, entire jobs, self-respect…Heart. Dargo’s going nowhere, and when he arrives, he finds he’s somewhere else entirely. With nothing left to lose, he tries his hand at lifting spirits.’

Given this ‘at the end of his rope’ character, Karina places him in JollyLand where he encounters an automation Gypsy fortune teller who (mechanically) informs him he is to meet a short, bright, and beautiful stranger – and pow! – there is Flame, a very alive fortune teller who introduces him to Tarran, the spirit of the land… and to tell more would diminish the pleasures of discovery that Karina’s story presents.

McRoberts makes this novella ring with a fine atmosphere that allows us to suspend disbelief and enjoy the journey while encountering the forces of Nature in imaginative terms. And she adds wonderful color photographs of nature that add to the joy. This is a terrific diversion from reality and an invitation to rediscover forgotten nature! Grady Harp, February 20


5.0 out of 5 stars As promised, definitely a feel-good story
Reviewed in the United States on January 30, 2020
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I actually really like novellas but authors don't publish them as often, which is a shame...it's like a bite-sized treat! Maybe that's why I particularly enjoyed Dargo. Short, punchy, good characters and a plot that didn't make me sad. It's funny, there's good observation that's gone into developing the characters, and it's so relatable that I found myself really immersed in the novel, and was thinking about it after I'd finished it too, which is rare. Overall, I really enjoyed Dargo.


N. N. Light
5.0 out of 5 stars Dargo will inspire you to make a difference!
Reviewed in the United States on April 28, 2021
The novella asks the question: can one person make a difference? The simple answer is yes! This is illustrated through the creative work in this novella surrounding Dargo and his 'elements'. Beautifully illustrated with evocative photos and images, Dargo comes alive in your hands.

The struggles Dargo faces are not unlike the struggles the planet faces every day. The two stories are woven together and leave the reader with a smile.

Reading this novella, you can't help but see Karina McRoberts has an appreciation for the aboriginal beliefs about the elements that make up the world.

An important novella in the 21st century as we face hard decisions about the environment. Fictional Dargo and the living Greta show one person can make a difference. Dargo will inspire you to make your difference. Recommend to everyone who lives on this planet we call Earth.

Disclaimer: I read this on Kindle Unlimited.

Thomas Anderson

Gives Voice To The Environment In A Way No Other Writer I Have Seen Has Been Able To Do

Dargo, Eco Hero! gives me the best kind of Wizard of Oz vibes. The author has nailed the same type of warmth as L. Frank Baum but puts her own unique spin on main character Dargo and his band of merry cohorts.
The ecological lessons conveyed in McRoberts’s work are huge ones. She is successful in creating quite an impact with her words and the experiences of her cast of characters. I was especially impressed with the mixture of personification and metaphors found throughout the writing. The imagery she creates leaves readers breathless at times. Her writing is timely and gives voice to the environment in a way no other writer I have seen has been able to do.
Dargo: Eco Hero is a short read, easily digestible in one sitting, it packs an important punch–and one we all need to feel right about now. Protecting and appreciating the earth for the miracle it is tops this author’s list of priorities. Readers looking for a hard dose of truth in their fantasy reads will appreciate McRoberts’s style and character development. I highly recommend Dargo’s story to anyone looking for something different, something fun, and a book that will leave them smiling.

Thomas Anderson for Literary Titan

Kim Calderon

Irresistible Appeal to Both Adults and Young Readers and One of Those Books I Would Love to See Transformed into Motion Picture.

Dargo's life is in crisis. He is about to lose everything he has worked for when his superior, Mortimer Fischer, puts him on unpaid leave due to a lack of productivity. When Dargo is back home, an unexpected and extraordinary windstorm takes him to the amusement park from his childhood, which has now been abandoned. It is there where his life takes an unexpected turn, and he meets four unusual spirits. Mariah, Terran, Vivian, and Flame are four forces of nature that need Dargo's help to save the world. They need him to develop a love for natural phenomena and spread it to others to save nature. Dargo must get along with the spirits, and with the help of his colleague, Lucinda, he must go through a drastic change to save his friends and the future of the world.

Dargo, Eco Hero! by Karina McRoberts is an incredible tale that retells the story of a geeky protagonist who is going through a tough time. His meeting with four natural spirits changes his life and encourages him to grow into a hero figure. McRoberts brings in her expertise from her years as a conservation scientist and allows readers an in-depth look into the environmental issues our world currently faces. There is an undercurrent of urgency that keeps the reader engaged and hooked to the plot, and the gorgeous writing and focused scenes lift the beauty of the story and inspire readers to care about the world around them. The book's characters are fiery and filled with delightful natures, and while it has strong shades of the supernatural, it still brims with realism, magical and exacting.

The current environmental conditions of our planet are a great worry to us all. Our planet is falling into ruin as our ecological systems crumble and the environment becomes more polluted. This fictional book provides awareness and inspires readers to be more generous in taking care of the environment. It is a story with an irresistible appeal to both adults and young readers and one of those books I would love to see transformed into Motion Picture.

Kim Calderon for The Book Commmentary