This blog is a celebration of novel, novel characters!

I love reading novels, and as an artist I know a great exercise to stretch one's illustration skills is to portray characters from a description in a book. This blog is a challenge to myself to do just that so I'll be posting illustrations from whatever book I'm currently reading. Feel free to add comments and send me your fan art for these great titles too!

Monday, April 8, 2013

The Firebird Trilogy by Kathy Tyers

I hope everyones week is off to a great start!
Lately I’ve been reading a lot of historical fiction set in the late 1800s, but I do read a wide variety of fiction genres.  Soon, you’ll see posts on contemporary stories, mystery, suspense, sci-fi, fantasy, and more!  There will also be a mix of new releases and classic tales.  Whenever I get the chance I’ll sneak in something special.

With that in mind, now it’s time for something completely different…


Are you interested in Sci-fi/fantasy stories?  Yes/No

If you selected “Yes”: Continue reading

If you selected “No”: Continue reading!

I love reading fantasy and sci-fi books but more often than not they go from being whimsical to just plain weird.  After a few misses I gave up reading anything in the genre aside from classics, such as Tolkien and C.S. Lewis, until last year when a friend of mine introduced me to an author named Kathy Tyers.

Her Firebird trilogy presents such a well-written and captivating story that I highly recommend it for anyone looking for a good read, even those who normally might not like the genre.  If you enjoy series like Star Wars and Star Trek then you definitely will want to check it out if it’s previously passed by your radar.

The first book was originally published in 1987, and the trilogy completed in 2000, but the version I own is the 2011 reprint that contains all three books of the trilogy in one annotated edition.  To be honest I’m not 100% sold on the annotations.  I think they're interesting since I’ve already read the series, but if I were a first time reader I would probably just ignore them until after I’d read through the story, the plot is so good you won’t want any distractions!

When I think about the series, it’s one that would be really cool to see as a movie, a comic book, an animated film or all of the above.  A whole team of designers could spend years developing the look of the costumes, hairstyles, architecture, ships and worlds, so I almost hesitate to put my pencil to paper on this one for fear I won’t be able to do it justice.  But, nothing ventured, nothing gained, right?

Firebird getting ready for a flight
This is the main character, Firebird, she's is a Princess and a Pilot.  In the first book she's mostly wearing her military uniform, but in the last book we would get to see her all decked out in her royal finery.  The possibilities for a space girl are simply endless.  When I get the chance in the future, I may have to sneak in more drawings of this series because I like it just that much!

Firebird dressed up

The main man of the story, Bennen Caldwell, is of course, the man every guy wants to be, and every girl wants to be with, on his home planet!

Brennen Caldwell wears a star on his uniform to indicate his telepathic abilities.
Check out the older covers of the series.  Each printing variant gives you a different take on what the setting could be like.  I really like the artwork on the first edition copy.  The 1999/2000 series covers have a bit of a Star Trek flavor.


After the trilogy there are two sequels.  I’ve read the first- “Wind & Shadow,” but the most recent, “Daystar,” is still in my To-Be-Read collection.  In the future I’ll post on both. 

Kathy Tyers Website:
Her Facebook:


  1. Your site is so unique, Monica! I look so forward to seeing each of your book reviews and sketches. Keep up the great work!

  2. Yay for Kathy Tyers! Definitely a writer worth both reading and studying. I need to read the first version sometime for comparison. I like that cover. I also like Fusion Fire and Wind & Shadow.

    I think you need to draw Firebird "decked out." I like the way you have her arms crossed. She would do that.

    1. Ya sometime I probably will draw her all decked out. That would be fun :)

  3. Oh, more great pictures! Yes, now I have to add more books to my TBR file.

    Ummm . . . do you do medievals too? :D

    1. Oh, I forgot to mention how much I especially like Brennen's sketch. You should paint that one up. :D

    2. I most definitely am into medieval stories! I have a drawing of Robin Hood that I'm almost done with, I'll post it when I finish. I love castles, knights, and princesses. Surprisingly I've never been to a renaissance fair, although I've been able to visit some really cool castles in Europe when traveling with family.

      Coloring Brennen's sketch wouldn't take too much time, if I get a free moment I'll give it a go ;)

    3. Oooh, yes, you must post the one of Robin Hood. Lovely!

      I just love your stuff!