Perian's Journey
by Sue Bridgwater & Alistair McGechie

Original hardback jacket illustration by Graham Ward

New cover design for paperback and eBook:
Original map - Alistair McGechie
Graphic re-styling - Jan Hawke


Perian's journey begins high on a mountain when he first sees a beautiful flower at the heart of a dark thorn. It is to be a journey beset with many perils and filled always with contrast, as the forces of good and evil in the outer world mirror the successes and failures of Perian's own life. In the classic tradition of the great quest stories, Perian encounters a wizard, a dragon, and high adventure; and also the betrayal and love, sorrow and joy, of everyday life.

Perian's Journey is both an adventure story told in spare, resonant prose, and an interior journey, as a boy grows to manhood and confronts his personal destiny.


5 Star Reviews (taken from

by Jan Hawke

This is a quest that threads its way through Perian's life, sometimes shining clear and at other times obscure and even terrible as the hero's story twists and turns from early heady triumphs and descends into despair and negligence, and then into doubt and a need to find some kind of vindication for the path his adventures have drawn him into.

A lot of the book has a dream-like, reflective quality that suits the story and the hero well, but one of the best things I thought as the tale unwound, lay in the 'guide', a wizard, and the main antagonist, a sorceress. Most fantasy has clear demarcation in the good and evil stakes and although this starts out that way, a growing ambivalence starts to emerge, once Perian's `blockbuster' challenges appear to have come to a happy conclusion and the action gives way to the business of attempting to follow a 'normal', if ennobled, path of marriage and parenthood.

From that standpoint, this is the book's main strength, as the 'life as adventure' motif teaches us all in the end; and so this is no safe fairy tale for children, but a mature metaphor for most people's journeys, and the knocks and setbacks that kick in eventually, almost invariably as we begin to get complacent with our lot. For sword and sorcery drama addicts this book may be disappointing at first, even though most of the mainstream action takes place in the earlier chapters. However, I'd certainly recommend that readers stick with it, as the tale deepens and scopes into a very realistic view of how much the little things matter to how a life should be lived with purpose and responsibility and, in the end, humility, if one wishes to truly do good by others and be an honest champion for the people they love.

by Stephenkingfan

Perian's Journey is written with a clarity and simplicity that communicates its deeper and sometimes darker themes with lightness.
Perian is a naturally gentle hero whose journey brings to my mind the Buddha's progress toward the Middle Way; while "we must not submit to Kemara [the dark lady but surely the darkness potential within us all?] yet we cannot overcome her".
Indeed I thought of Hesse's Siddartha more than once when I read this book which has the feel of a secular fable.
Wizards and dragons be here but the Hero's quest is ultimately one of heart and mind where Perian finds, forgets and remembers, through a process of inexorable change, both who he is and what matters most.


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