The Song Caster ~ a sweet fantasy novella to warm your heart

Let me start by saying I really enjoyed The Song Caster. I loved the narrative, the characters and the writing. The fairytale is familiar in the sense that our hero, Lute, must help a lesser protagonist (Benedeck) find what his heart desires and secure his fate at the risk of Lute’s own neck and future. The fact that Lute agrees to set out on this adventure speaks volumes of his character. I also love the way Shipley develops Benedeck’s character into this wonderful individual who truly deserves his share of happiness.

I really enjoyed the storyline stuffed with overbearing parents, magical instruments and yes…a dragon. There is humor and plot twists all mixed with a wonderful touch of romance. I found myself rooting for the characters and I was completely satisfied with the ending. It’s a sweet story, clean and fun, and suitable for all members of the family.

My only complaint about this story was a lack of development of Viralei’s character. I wished she had shown up sooner in the story and would have loved to have seen her as a more adventurous and daring type. I do like than none of Shipley’s characters are useless. There are no “walk-ons”, and everyone has a purpose and place.

The Song Caster is well-crafted and an excellent addition to the Wilderhark Tales. I would highly recommend it to anyone wanting a fun, adventurous fantasy read with a happy ever after fairytale ending. A solid 4 stars.

*I received an ARC of this book for free in exchange for an honest review. *

“The Song Caster” Cover Reveal

Hark! Hark!  Greetings from Gant-o’-the-Lute and his fine wordsmith, Danielle Shipley! The day of the next Wilderhark Tales draws nigh! Though the words of such magnificent tale are still hidden from thine eyes, I have been given permission by the scribbler of such stories to share with you the cover upon which her latest words shall be wrapped.  Behold!

Song Caster Cover, front Yes!  Gant-o’-the-Lute is returning in another adventure!

Yes, yes!  Tis unbelievable but true.  What?  What did you ask?  What mighten the tale be about? Good, question and I have such answer here upon this sheet of paper.  The back cover shall read thusly:

The dull doom of impending marriage at his back and a reticent royal at his side, remarkable minstrel Gant-o’-the-Lute is off in search of adventure, and you can be sure he finds it – complete with much music, magicked maidens, and a dangerous power so great, Lute might for once find himself outmatched.

The Song Caster
Book Four of The Wilderhark Tales

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An enchantress’s curse turns a spoiled royal into a beast; a princess’s pricked finger places her under a hundred-year spell; bales of straw are spun as golden as the singing harp whisked down a giant beanstalk – all within sight of Wilderhark, the forest that’s seen it all.

You’ve heard the stories – of young men scaling rope-like braids to assist the tower-bound damsel; of gorgeous gowns appearing just in time for a midnight ball; of frog princes, and swan princes, and princes saved from drowning by maidens of the sea. Tales of magic. Tales of adventure. Most of all, tales of true love. Once upon a time, you knew them as fairytales. Know them now as Wilderhark’s.

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The King has authorized me to release the official details to you from the Royal presses: Full Title: “The Song Caster (Book Four of The Wilderhark Tales)
ISBN: 978-0-9891846-3-2
Genre: Young Adult Fairytale
Length: Novella (212 pages)
Release DateTuesday, June 24, 2014
Future availability: Paperback ( and eBook ( and

Add “The Song Caster” to your Goodreads shelf today!

And be sure to keep your eyes open for the scribbler of this and other fine Wilderhark tales.  She has been known to pop into our town square before.  She may return again. And, as I am a purveyor and elocutionist of ARCs, I have been awarded the honor of perusing this tale for fair trade of honest opinion in the town square.  Such announcement shall be made in the near future.  Until then, I bid you ado.

Danielle E. Shipley Author PhotoDanielle E. Shipley’s first novelettes told the everyday misadventures of wacky kids like herself. …Or so she thought. Unbeknownst to them all, half of her characters were actually closeted elves, dwarves, fairies, or some combination thereof. When it all came to light, Danielle did the sensible thing: Packed up and moved to Fantasy Land, where daily rent is the low, low price of her heart, soul, blood, sweat, tears, firstborn child, sanity, and words; lots of them. She’s also been known to spend short bursts of time in the real-life Chicago area with the parents who home schooled her and the two little sisters who keep her humble. When she’s not living the highs and lows of writing young adult novels, she’s probably blogging about it at Her first novel, “Inspired”, is now available through J. Taylor Publishing.

Other books in the Wilderhark Tales: