By Alecia Stone
I don't think the themes of a book are at the forefront of a writer's thoughts, at least, that wasn't the case for me. They sort of unfold over the course of writing a book. While writing Talisman Of El, I did note down a few themes while others were unveiled after I finished writing the book.
- Things are not always what they seem
Sometimes when we try to analyse things merely from an objective point of view, we only see an outline of the truth. In order to see the bigger picture and get a better understanding of situations, we have to dig deeper. Charlie has always known that he was different to others in some way, he just couldn't figure out why. He only starts to realise the truth when his world is turned upside down.
- Fear of failure
This is probably one of the greatest fears people have. Perhaps it's not so much the fear of not succeeding but rather of rejection. A number of the characters in my book are faced with this dilemma. Charlie has such a great responsibility, and he dreads the thought of failing in fear he will lose the people he loves.
- Self Discovery
The quest for identity occupies so much of our lives that sometimes there is no more room in our minds for other thoughts. Charlie embarks on a journey of self-discovery in a quest he hopes will give him answers to who he is and why his life is spiralling out of control. What he discovers is beyond his wildest dreams.
There are many types of relationships to explore in life and every person we meet has an impact on our lives, even if it is of the smallest effect. Relationships bind this story together. Friendship plays a huge role in Charlie's life. Being an orphan, he relies on the support and loyalty of his friends to keep him on his feet. His relationship with the other characters propels him to act and ultimately shapes his choices.
- Order and Chaos
I think it's safe to say that chaos and order go hand in hand. Order sometimes instigates chaos and vice versa. There always seems to be a battle for authority between the two. As Charlie ventures the land of Arcadia, he witnesses the effects of an ongoing war and the struggle of a civilization trying to instil order back into their world.
To be courageous does not mean to be without fear. Charlie learns this lesson when someone he cares about is fatally wounded. He realises the importance of standing up for what he believes in which ultimately allows him to overcome his fear.
Often when we are faced with the concept of death, we start to wonder about the important things in life. Charlie's bid to help a friend leaves him with a difficult decision, one that will not only have an effect on his life but that will also change his friend's life forever.
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