The Rebecca Pendragon Trilogy
Rebecca is a 12-year-old orphan who has gone to live with her grandmother in rural Minnesota. There she learns her grandmother is not what she expected, magic is real, and her mother's death was not an accident. She also learns she is the real target of her mother's killer--the god Pan.
Rebecca's mother dies. She goes to live with her grandmother who shows her magic and magical creatures are real. She makes new friends, both magical and human. She learns caused her mom's death and wants to kill her. She learns she is the last living descendant of King Arthur.
Pan (who can't be killed) confronts Rebecca and her friends. In spite of her friend's advice, she faces him alone and defeats him in an unusual and unexpected way.
Rural Minnesota, Scotland
Based on a True Story
Plot - Premise
Plot - Other Elements
Coming of Age,Happy Ending,Meaningful Message,Twist
Mature Audience Themes
Main Character Details
Name: Rebecca Pendragon
Key Traits: Adventurous,Complex,Faithful,Honorable,Insecure
Additional Character Details
Key Traits: Adventurous,Complex,Confident,Decisive,Empathetic,Gracious,Honorable,Skillful,Selfless
Additional Character Details
Name: Cedric (dragon)
Key Traits: Adventurous,Badass,Charming,Complex,Confident,Decisive,Faithful,Gracious,Heroic,Honorable,Selfless,Skillful,Secretive,Sophisticated
Additional Character Details
Name: Pip (gnome)
Key Traits: Adventurous,Charming,Complex,Confident,Engaging,Faithful,Heroic,Honorable,Skillful,Funny,Romantic
The Rebecca Pendragon Trilogy is a fantasy adventure meant for middle grades and YA but has been enjoyed by people of all ages. After her mother is killed in a car accident, she has to move to rural Minnesota to live with her grandmother. She soon learns that Grandma has a unique relationship with a dragon named Cedric and a gnome called Pip. As she settles into her new life, she makes friends and learns her mom's death was not an accident. It was engineered by Marid, a minion of the great god Pan. She also learns she is the real target of Pan, the subject of a prophesy and the last surviving descendant of King Arthur--for whom Pip was the court jester. She meets a lot of magical characters and learns some valuable life lessons--including lessons in mindfulness. Reviewers have called it "a literary gift" and expressed the opinion that it would make a good movie.
After her mother’s death in a car accident, young Rebecca is invited by her grandmother (her only living relative) to live with her on her farm in Minnesota. Seeing the young woman very sad about her mother’s death and for being far from her close friends, the grandmother decides to tell her about the magical world that surrounds them and has been part of their families for so long. Rebecca starts to live with dragons, fairies, gnomes, and other wonderful magical beings, until discovering that she is the direct descendant of King Arthur, being one of the only ones to be able to wield his sword. However, she awakens the fury of the evil magical community, which wants to exterminate the human race, starting with the people closest to Rebecca, just as they did to her mother.
Authors Writing Style: FAIR
Franchise Potential: GOOD
Accuracy of Book Profile
One thing that could improve the profile of The Rebecca Pendragon Trilogy is to add Pan as the antagonist. As much as he finds redemption at the end and stops being a villain, he’s the one who causes the biggest problems for Rebecca throughout the trilogy. The list of characters only presents the protagonist and her mentors, and it would be more interesting if we could also get to know a little about the other side, the villain’s side.
Draw of Story
The mixture of the ordinary life of a 12-year-old girl with the entrance to a magical world previously unknown to her is a good start for the story that makes us want to keep following.
Everything revolves around a single theme (the evil that wants to exterminate humans while the good ones want to unite humans with magical beings), making the narrative a little tiring. As much as this is, in fact, the central plot and needs to be explored, we are facing a magical world with infinite possibilities, which could thus generate different and entertaining subplots.
Use of Special Effects
THE STORY RELIES HEAVILY ON SPECIAL EFFECTS
Primary Hook of Story
The hook is to see the personal growth of this young girl, who starts as an immature and stubborn child and ends up becoming a respected and conscientious queen. The hook (thinking about the entertaining side of the story) can also be: “accompanying an ordinary human living many adventures among magical beings.”
It could appeal mostly to children who are fans of fantasy and like this premise of the common girl who discovers she is a special being in another world, following the premise of similar films, such as Alice in Wonderland and The Wizard of Oz.
Simply by narrative, no. Despite being a trilogy that brings together several magical beings and has an interesting adventure, it doesn’t have the dramatic appeal necessary to garner many awards. However, the story makes room for different creations in the audiovisual adaptation that could give the narrative new, more artistic, and exciting nuances.
Similar Films/TV Series
ALICE IN WONDERLAND - AN ORDINARY GIRL ENTERS WONDERLAND, MEETS MAGICAL BEINGS AND EXPERIENCES NEW ADVENTURES. THE WIZARD OF OZ - AN ORDINARY LITTLE GIRL ENTERS A MAGICAL AND COLORFUL WORLD, MEETING DIFFERENT BEINGS AND BEING USEFUL IN HELPING HER NEW FRIENDS. THE CHRONICLES OF NARNIA -CHILDREN ENTER THE WORLD OF NARNIA THROUGH THE WARDROBE, MEET MAGICAL BEINGS AND TRY TO HELP THEM.
What’s New About the Story
The premise and course of the story are kind of similar to other stories we’ve seen before, however, the way the dragon communicates through grandma’s body is somewhat original. Perhaps it would be interesting to explore these magical features more deeply to make the book more unique and more entertaining.
They all have a well-defined arc, which shows growth in each one. The young Rebecca is the one who changes the most, from an almost childish position to the post of the queen of magical beings capable of uniting peoples. The antagonist himself also changes drastically throughout the narrative, becoming a kind being at the end. The dragon who disliked humans comes to know the positive side of people and tries to defend them in the end. These arcs all make the characters even more likable.
Uniqueness of Story
It’s not a rare gem because we’ve seen countless similar stories, movies, and fables. Therefore, the author could even keep the story as it is, but maybe create a more original universe with its own rules to make the story more unique.
Film: Streaming TV Series: Limited Run / Mini-Series, Streaming
WORK IN PROGRESS
Despite being entertaining and telling a story with a nice moral at the end, about forgiveness and thinking about the common good to feel good about yourself, the story ends up sounding repetitive, rounding the same topics over and over and without great surprises, since it is a universe already seen previously, and thus ends up not drawing much attention because of it.
Tips for Improvement
If the idea is to reach an audience as young as seven, some changes could be made to better target this age group. In the profile, the author writes that the trilogy has extreme violence, which alone would distance children of that age and parents who would most likely not feel comfortable with this adult content. For example, there are countless disputes between beings, and dragons are often used (in one case, used as a weapon), which makes the plot a little scary for the little ones. While it is an original feature of the book to see Rebecca’s grandmother receive the dragon spirit inside her heart, thus speaking in a different voice and gaining fiery eyes, it can at the same time seem frightening to children, who may imagine that the lady is possessed by some sort of spirit, as widely seen in horror movies. It’s interesting to have this dragon-human connection through the heart, but it would be interesting to apply a different visual resource to present that in the adaptation so it doesn’t sound too scary. It’s essential to have in mind the target audience suggests 7-year-old kids, and we must consider them when adapting the book. It’s nice to see how the book gets straight to the point right from the start. This helps us to connect with the story without much difficulty. However, when we enter what could be the second act, things lose their dynamism, and we are left running in circles about the same topics, conflicts, and situations. We already know right away about the conflict between humans and magical beings, and that evil beings want to destroy humanity. It’s a good trigger and central theme to guide the story, but talking about this subject all the time ends up making the narrative slow and unsurprising. The dialogues could be less explanatory as well. We see a long sequence of teachings to little Rebecca and explanations about the magic universe when we could simply learn these rules more organically entirely by watching Rebecca live and interact with other beings in the wizarding world.