editorial review quotes:
Editorial Review Self Publishing Review:
“A memorable new work of YA science fiction. The focal characters of this novel make for a brilliant trio of protagonists wrestling with powers they had previously thought were impossible. The true beauty of the writing comes in the development of these central characters. This is a patient, timely, creative and thoughtful book that discusses key social and environmental issues within the framework of a thrilling adventure. Fascinating and thought-provoking, the book and the magical realm of The Sandbox are well worth exploring.” Self-Publishing Review, ★★★★
“In The Sandbox, the stakes are high as alien technology and three, over-excited teenagers take the lead in this fun adventure story. Fantasy meets science fiction to create an action-packed plot that will keep readers guessing all the way through. With whimsical imagery, Patrick’s imaginative novel is entertaining, stimulating, and captivating.” Rating: 5 out of 5 stars. www.bookreviewdirectory.com
Excerpt from The
“So what are you
doing in Oklahoma? Isla Duncan from the Kingdom of Fife,” asked Dan, competing
for her undivided attention.
“I’m doing a
sponsored handcycle for charity. The more miles I rack up, the more funds we
raise. My dad’s driving my support van, a camper van, you guys call them RVs.
He’s writing a book on the Scottish diaspora where all the Scottish emigrants
ended up in America, so we’re visiting libraries all over. Tracing family
names, contacting descendants. That sort of thing. Oh and our route takes in as
many of the Wild West movie sites as possible. We’re driving down to Texas
“You a big Cowboys
and… Indians fan, huh…” said Dan.
hesitantly, “My dad is.” She threw him a sidelong glance, uncertain if that was
OK or not. Dan busied himself nursing their nascent fire, neither judging her
or letting her off the hook. Sonny returned to the cave mouth to watch nature’s
spectacular demonstration of raw power outside, his eyes shining with
excitement as he stood as near to the entrance as he dared.
Settling on to the
ground mat, tracing out the pattern of a glorious sunrise with her fingertip,
Isla took time to assess her predicament. As her eyes became accustomed, she
realised the cave was the size of a large basement, with a wide entrance and
several smaller caves off-shooting in other directions, into ever deeper,
rippling in the wind, grinned at Isla, but startled by a sudden, especially
large gust, he staggered backwards, then quickly regained his composure to
prove he wasn’t scared. No sireee. But Isla didn’t
howling wind, and the intense whistling outside began to worry itself deep into
Isla’s skin. She shivered — then looked up. Even the massive walls and ceilings
of solid stone now seemed vulnerable. Each boy was trying to be brave but when
one spectacular gust reached deep into the cave as if some invisible giant was
groping for them, Sonny scurried back to join them by the campfire. Dan grinned
at Sonny’s failure to keep his cool.
Isla covered her
ears from the incessant roar of the beast and stared at the cave mouth as if
some horrific monster was about to burst inside at any second. Now the wall
etchings of birds flickered in the firelight and she felt surrounded, and
watched, by crows and by hawks.
Dan shuffled closer
to her and put an awkward arm around her back which she accepted gratefully and
spoke in her ear:
“This is quite
unusual. A really big one!”
“No kidding!” she
yelled back, eyes wide with fear.
“You couldn’t ask
to be in a safer place though.”
Isla didn’t seem at
all convinced. Behind her back, Sonny and Dan exchanged another rapid-fire
series of glances and expressions:
I don’t know!
“So what happened
to your legs?” asked Sonny, finally.
Dan rolled his
eyes. Dude! How could you?
What? What did I
“Car accident when
I was four. My mum died. It was me that killed her.”
I most recently completed a non-fiction book called Why have Adventures? for parents of young teens exploring the benefits of outdoor education.