What's my favorite hobby? That's easy. I LOVE to read. In fact, my sign name is "book" signed with the hand shape of my initials. A dear friend who is deaf-blind gave me that sign name.
Between the covers of a book, anything is possible. Reading can take us to magical places where anything can happen. We experience the world through another's eyes and thoughts. Or we gain new knowledge about a subject of interest. There is no end to enjoyments when we open a book.
I am deaf-blind. But that doesn't take away my ability to read. I learned braille so I could regain access to the world of words. Some people who are blind like to read braille books made of paper. I like electronic braille using a refreshable braille display. I download book files from a website called Book Share and read them on my Braille Note M Power.
Recently, I read an excellent book that I would like to tell you about now. What's particularly special about this book is that I know the author. He's an online friend of mine. His name is Scott Stoffel and he just happens to be deaf-blind, too.
Hector's Magic is a fun and engrossing story that takes you on a magical adventure. Hector is an awkward young man who is trying, rather poorly, to support himself as an amateur magician. Soon, a peculiar little man shows Hector where he can find real Magic. It's not a talent, but a place.
In Magic, Hector finds himself in the middle of a terrible crisis. All the wizards of Magic have been turned to stone by an evil witch named Vandori. The future of Magic is in grave danger. Who will save the wizards from permanent doom?
Hector may be clumsy and rash at times, but he is brave and willing to learn. With the help of a host of unusual friends, Hector sets out on his magical quest. Rishana is the baker's daughter who befriends Hector. Vinnie is Hector's pet parrot. There's also a talking horse named Windwalker who can literally walk on the wind. The prince joins the gang. And, always, they are aided by Nilwart, a very old and eccentric wizard.
The entire book is filled with adventure, riddles and humor. One thing I can tell you about Scott Stoffel, he is a very funny man. You can always count on him for a good laugh. This is clearly evident throughout the book. (I loved the part when Nilwart accidently dresses Hector in a grass skirt.)
Hector's Magic is special for another reason. It is not just a story. It's also a game. The book includes the unique Reader's Challenge that allows you to really become involved in the adventure.
At the end of each chapter, you are asked various questions about the plot, what Hector should do next or how to solve a riddle that will help Hector on his journey. Each answer will earn you up to three points. A wrong answer could get you zero points for that chapter. A really bad or reckless response will result in a strike. If you collect too many strikes throughout the game, there is a penalty at the end that will reduce your over all score.
Can you solve the riddle of the Cobra Room? Have you ever seen a Sand Snake? Should Hector trust that Unicorn? How would you defeat a Nightmare? Listen to Vinnie's warning... "Danger, Danger!"
I loved the Reader's Challenge because it let me be part of the book. I found myself reading more and more so I could get to the next question. It became a personal battle for me to try to outsmart Mr. Stoffel. I Rarely did. I ended the game with 35 points. Unfortunately, I had too many strikes and had to deduct five points. The results: "You were good." I guess I'm not much of a magical adventurer.
This is more than just a good read. It's also a fund raiser. A portion of every book sold will be donated to The Foundation Fighting Blindness. Enjoy a book. Play a game. Support a good cause. It's the perfect combination.
Below is the press release for Hector's Magic. This includes price and ordering information.
Enjoy your journey to Magic.
From Scott Stoffel:
My newest book “Hector’s Magic” is now available at the Café Press Fun Fountain www.cafepress.com/funfountain or by mail order.
To order by mail, send your name, address, and a check to:
211 Station Square Blvd.
Lansdale, PA 19446
The book is available in paperback or as a text file on computer CD. Both formats include the unique Reader Challenge game to make reading more fun and interactive.
The following prices include shipping and taxes:
CD with text file: $15.24
A gift of $2.00 is donated to the Foundation Fighting Blindness for each sale of the book or CD. You will find information about the fund-raising drive on the back cover of the paperback or on the front of the CD.
When a real-world magician discovers the mystical realm of Magic, he unwittingly becomes the only thing standing between a powerful and mysterious witch and the kingdom. Unless he can master the fabulous magic powers he never knew he had, the glory of Magic will soon be gone.
But you can do more than merely read the exciting story! Try your hand at the optional Reader Challenge game and help Hector the magician and his new friends save Magic from the witch and her fearsome hoard of Mongrels. See how well you can solve the problems confronting the characters by answering the Reader Challenge question at the end of each chapter. Use your wits and Special Items to score points and avoid dangerous strikes. The game is easy to learn, simple to play, and can be played almost anywhere. It’s your turn to be the adventurer!
But even if you do not wish to take on the Reader Challenge game, Hector's Magic is a fun and lively fantasy adventure story for readers of all ages.
Special Notice from the Author:
Scott's Mad World
I added a feature to my new website:.
You can now get the first five chapters of Hector's Magic for free.
Go to the site and click on Bookstore,
then scroll down to Hector's Magic.
Where it says "Read free sample chapters" click on either Rich Text or Plain Text to view.
You can also click on "Click Here to Get a Hard Copy" to visit a web store where you can buy a paperback or CD copy.
I hope to have more books available in the near future. DB authors can contact me about free advertising or publishing services.
Hope you will visit www.scottsmadworld.com.
(Written on June 5, 2009. Updated on July 23 2009)