The Crystilleries of Echoland

Children - Fantasy/Sci-Fi
380 Pages
Reviewed on 03/27/2018
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Author Biography

Tal Boldo is a self-published award-winning novelist and audiobook reader and producer. She likes to write under pseudonyms that relate to her stories. Her teen fantasy, The Crystilleries of Echoland, was published under Dew Pellucid, and is a 2018 Los Angeles Book Festival Runner-up in the Children's Books category. Her adult love story, Looking Glass Friends, was published under E. L. Neve, and won 11 awards. Visit her publisher website:

    Book Review

Reviewed by Liz Konkel for Readers' Favorite

The Crystilleries of Echoland by Dew Pellucid begins as thousands of children disappear with only one child ever having returned. Will Cleary returned with a falcon and a wolf to watch over him, but his twin sister remained behind in Echoland, another world filled with reflections of us called Echoes. All Will's parents have done since he came back is to plot ways to find his sister, often barely acknowledging his existence. When his faithful protectors reveal a shocking truth, Will is pulled back into the world he doesn't remember on a journey to find his sister. Along the way, he turns to new allies for help as he's swept into the discovery of the missing children, into solving a murder, and into helping the rightful heir onto the throne.

Dew Pellucid blends together an exciting fantasy adventure with a murder mystery in a journey of growing up. Echoland is a unique and ghost-like mirror world with transparent trees and people. Everything is described in ghostly detail, but often reflects our own world with a mix of absurd and ominous twists. Every little detail of this world matters in the larger picture of the story. It's a wondrous and yet dangerous place that pulls you along for the journey. The stakes are high with Will's life constantly at risk, but his journey through this world teaches him bravery and true friendship. Will's friendships are the strongest connections he has as both of his parents seem to shrug him off whenever he's around, too occupied with trying to find his sister to really see him. Dea and Damian are more than just his pets, they're his protectors, the ones watching over him since he returned home, and the ones that lead him back to Echoland. His life at the beginning is only briefly touched upon, but it's clear he's alone except for his pets so, when he makes friends in Echoland, it further illustrates how important that bond is for him.

His new friends liven the story up while also giving a sense of heart to the tale and providing him with people he wants to protect. Peter is his first real friend in this world. He's a magician who starts off a bit suspicious, but quickly turns into Will's strongest supporter. He has a mischievous side to him, but he's also loyal and compassionate. Animals play a large role throughout the story as Will's pets are the catalyst for his return to Echoland, but it's the Echo Wolf he bonds with later that fills a certain void. Peter has a strong attachment to his dog Poudini, who has an emotional place in the story. Fun nods to common things in our world maintain a lot of the humor throughout as Echoland has Crystalmas instead of Christmas and Poudini is a fun play on the famous magician. The illustrations are stunning and capture important moments throughout with an array of blue hues that capture the lucent essence of the world. The Crystilleries of Echoland is a hero's journey in a story of strength and courage with a dazzling array of illustrations.

Melinda Hills

Will Cleary is the only child to survive being taken to Shadowpain by evil Echoes, mirror beings to the Sounds, the real humans in our world, in The Crystilleries of Echoland by Dew Pellucid. Unfortunately, Will’s twin sister has been missing for almost 10 years and his parents are still searching, not understanding the truth of the dual worlds. Will discovers the truth, though, and must escape to Echoland to fulfill a mission to save the real Prince who is his own Echo. The evil that killed the former King is trying to establish complete control. That means danger for Will and his new friends in the Orphanage of Castaway Children, Sounds and Echoes alike, as his agents, the Fate Sealers, carefully watch everyone. With animals to help them and ancient maps to guide them, Will and the group experience tremendous adventures and escape danger to try to protect the true Prince, who will be crowned King on his thirteenth birthday if the fake King can be stopped. Will the children be able to solve a 200-year-old mystery and reestablish peace between the topside world and Echoland?

Amazing and imaginative descriptions of a mirror underground world make The Crystilleries of Echoland by Dew Pellucid a fantastic tale full of adventure and bravery. A tremendous, unique concept! Beautiful illustrations depict the magic of the environment and help the story along. The pace of the story is quite fast, though, so it may be tricky for younger readers to follow, but the action is exciting and the cooperation of the children is a valuable lesson. The Crystilleries of Echoland is a great first volume in what promises to be more adventures involving Sounds and Echoes in an enchanted land.

Romuald Dzemo

The Crystilleries of Echoland by Dew Pellucid is a beautifully illustrated and well-written fantasy that will warm the hearts of young readers — and old dreamers. My eight-year-old son found delight in reading this with me. It’s a story set in a parallel world, known as Echoland, a world that reflects the reality of our own, only referred to as the Sound world by those who live in Echoland. Echoland is threatened by evil and young Will Cleary is thrust into a magical world, the “see-through” land, where he encounters many castaway children in a fortress. Here he must solve a two-hundred-year-old riddle. The destinies of Echoland and the Sound world depend on his success. But this is a very dangerous adventure, and even with the help of the most gifted boy in Echoland and other daring kids from the fortress, can Will Cleary beat the monsters and bad men that lay traps for him?

The first thing that struck me was the fluidity of the language. The prose has a magic of its own, a charm that compels the reader to keep on reading, and the reader notices this from the very first words of the narrative. Dew Pellucid’s world building is impeccable and the precision in diction is unique. The setting of this book has something eerie about it, but it excites the reader’s imagination all the same. The colorful illustrations complement the writing. The vivid descriptions combine with natural-sounding dialogues to create an exciting reading experience. The Crystilleries of Echoland offers a wonderful escape to readers who want to get away from the doldrums of an empty day. The narrative voice is strong and compelling and the characters are filled with life and emotions that readers — both young and old — can relate to.

Stephen Fisher

The Crystilleries of Echoland by Dew Pellucid is an engaging story that begins with the Clearys. Ten years ago Will and his twin sister disappeared. Will was found, but Emmy is still missing. Every day their parents keep using the same insane means to obsessively search for their lost daughter with no luck. Will was found with his two pets; Dea, a wolf and Damian, a falcon. Wanting to help find his sister, Will is awakened by his pets talking to him. He is enlightened by his pets telling him about Sounds and Echoes. How Will is a Sound and his reflection is an Echo. In reality, Sounds have substance and Echoes are their translucent reflections. As the story moves along, everything takes a drastic turn when Will finds out that his chemistry teacher is also a part of that world. When Will walks past him as he enters the classroom, he tells Mr. Drinkwater that a Fate Sealer had tried to kill him. Everything after that event flips this fantastic story and kicks it into overdrive.

Dew Pellucid does a superb job of describing in intricate detail the wondrous world of the crystal clear Echoes. The author creates an entire world with a mirrored society that coexists with ours. The characters that she has created in both worlds are believably real. The crystalline Echoes are mostly described in the boarding school that Will and his new-found friends attend. As the author moves the story along, there are many surprises, twists, turns, and even power struggles; just as in most scholastic societies. They have strict rules with dire consequences when rules aren't followed. Dew Pellucid is able to describe events in such detail, using a slew of adjectives that show the author as being able to spin a yarn and she excels at it. I was intrigued by how fast these pages turned for me as I was immediately drawn into the story, and was willingly held captive for its duration. The Crystilleries of Echoland is an entertaining read for all ages.