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Released: February 2016
ISBN: 9781310425547
ASIN: B01AOWGL4C
Kindle US, Kindle UK
Smashwords
Apple, Kobo, Nook

Print Released: October 2016
ISBN: 9781910234242
Amazon US, Amazon UK

THE DRAGON IN THE GARDEN
Series: The Watcher Rising Series, #1
Author: Erika Gardner
Length: Novel
Genre: Contemporary Fantasy
Price: $3.99

There is magic beneath the mundane and in The Dragon in the Garden, Siobhan Orsini witnesses it all. No lie can fool her, no glamour or illusion can cloud her Sight. She sees through them all and wishes she could close her eyes. Returning to face her past, Siobhan inherits her grandparents’ house in California’s wine country. She encounters a talking dragon, a hot fallen angel, a demon lord, a Valkyrie, and, oh yes, her ex-boyfriend. And that is just in the first twenty-four hours. 

It’s time to find out why she has this power. 

Siobhan seeks out the Oracle and learns that only her Sight can help mankind navigate the travails of an ancient war. Our world is the prize in a battle between the dragons, who would defend us, and Lucifer’s fallen angels, who seek to take the Earth for themselves. Using her gift, she will have to make a choice that will decide humanity’s future.

Excerpt
The memory has haunted me for years.

In the middle of a bright California summer, dark days came. My mother and grandparents spoke in hushed, serious voices, arguing about my absent father. Was it my fault he left?

A soft whimper escaped my throat and my eyes burned. I needed a hug, but no one paid any attention to me that day. So I ran away to the refuge of my grandparents’ garden where I could hide among its statues and flowers.

My eyes lingered over the familiar garden ornaments. I passed the old birdbath, the statues of gnomes, and a cheerful squirrel. I ran one hand over the stone deer. Its brown paint had faded from years under the sun. Walking with quick steps down the gravel path, I made my way to the center of the garden, my special spot where my favorite statue waited.

A gnarled apricot tree grew there. Right now it was covered with tiny green apricots. Later in the summer the sweet fruit I loved would ripen. I would get to pick them with my parents, no, just with my mother. My lip trembled. My father wouldn’t be here.

The bright-green dragon lay curled at the foot of the apricot tree, partially covered by vines. My mother called the color jade green—the same shade as my eyes. As a child she talked to all the statues, but I only spoke to the dragon. I named her Daisy. Sitting down next to her now, the tears welled up at last, spilling over my cheeks. I wrapped my arms around my legs, making myself into a little ball of five-year-old misery.

“Child, why are you sad?” said a woman’s voice.

“Who said that?” I asked, wiping my cheek.

“I did.”

“Where are you?” I stood and peered at the plants and statues around me.

“Right here.”

“Are not,” I retorted.

A soft laugh filled the air and the woman spoke again. “Perhaps you are right. Easy enough to fix, I suppose.”

The breeze picked up. The space beneath the apricot tree shimmered. Ripples warped the air like the heat over the barbecue when my father cooked. The sweet notes of wind chimes filled the yard. Grandma and Grandpa didn’t have any wind chimes. I whirled around to find the noise.

Under the branches appeared an enormous green dragon’s head. My mouth opened in a silent O and I held my breath.

What the reviewers are saying
A light fantasy novel involving every kind of magical creature, The Dragon in the Garden is the first of The Watcher Rising series, and packs a punch. In addition to the magical war going on around Siobhan and two men vying for her attentions. Romance is also blooming between her brother and another character which readers hope becomes book two. On the other hands, the plot flows well with a few minor twists . . . a great story for lovers of dragons and hot fallen angels, making this a good book to add to any to-read list. ~ Sarah E. Bradley, InD'Tale Magazine

• • •

Fallen Angels, Dragons and magical creatures
From the first page I was captured by the wonder of the story unfolding page after page. Following Siobhan as characters entered and left her life in the past and the present. It was magical to watch as her team built for the chance at success while discovering new secrets that have long lay dormant. Excitement and dread at every turn, every battle won or lost. Breathless wondering if Siobhan's race to succeed is enough to overcome all the forces of chaos aligned to destroy the hopes of Humanity once and for all by killing Siobhan. ~ BigDom, Amazon

• • •

Great read!
The novel draws you right in and has you captivated until the very end. The descriptions are so vivid that it is really easy to lose yourself in this imaginary world. The characters pretty much come alive from the narratives and you kind of miss them after finishing the reading. Loved it! Recommend it! ~ Irena K, Amazon

• • •

Angel, Demons, and Dragons...oh my!!!!
Erika Gardner's debut novel THE DRAGON IN THE GARDEN is a fresh spin on all things fantasy. It is a lovely tale about a young girl with the ability to see through deception. She discovers a hidden dragon living in her grandmother's garden. The dragon warns Siobhan of a future in which she will rise up and her choices were determine humanity's path. Years later, Siobhan inherits the house and returns to her home town. This kicks starts her story filled with life and death choices, making decisions for the world's fate, and falling in love with an immortal. Gardner does a brilliant job weaving in mythical and celestial creatures in an urban California town. Angels, demons, dragons, gryphons, and others abound in this magical world. Fans of Kevin Hearne or Patricia Briggs would enjoy this story. ~ Wendy, Amazon

• • •

Yes, please! The Dragon in the Garden delivers . . .
Erika Gardner is more magician than mere author. She conjures up a richly imagined realm that exists just beyond sight--unless you happen to be the Watcher. Gardner delivers everything I love about fantasy: a heroine growing into her extraordinary gifts; brisk, breathless plot twists; antagonists who personify evil squaring off with heroes (both mortal and angelic) who I love to love. And a dragon of course--a magnificent, wondrously drawn DRAGON. The book is smart, funny, and filled with compelling mythology. I couldn't put it down. Book Two please, Ms. Gardner! ~ JJ, Amazon

• • •

If you like Charles de Lint and Patricia Briggs, you will like this
Erika Gardner's debut novel has everything: epic struggle between good and evil, characters that feel real and grow with the story, mythology, swordplay, romance. Like de Lint's and Briggs' novels, the world of mythology co-exists with the mundane world and only a few can see past the illusions. Unbeknownst to humans, Good and Evil are in a primal battle for the world, and its fate rests with one young woman who isn't sure that what she sees is real. It takes some angelic and draconic intervention to get her to understand her role as Watcher. ~ Kit BH, Amazon

• • •

Great read that fantasy lovers will adore
Great read that fantasy lovers will adore! Feast your eyes on all that the Watcher Sees - the magnificent dragon, the hideous hag, the angels both beautiful and terrible. If you love delving into new worlds, you won't be able to put it down. ~ Kimberly Emerson, Amazon

• • •

A novel to escape into...
What appealed to me immediately about the character of Siobhan is how, as she fumbled her way into adulthood she lost the "gift" that was so pure in childhood, but rejected by society and smothered by therapy. Although I don't usually care for fantasy, this journey of hers in regaining her "truth"is lovely...and incidentally, becomes the key to saving the world! It's about trusting your instincts, following your bliss, and staying true to yourself. Gardner's prose is relaxed, making this an easy novel to escape into. ~ Amy Moellering, Amazon

• • •

a cup of tea and a couple cookies and immerse yourself in a world full of legend and love.
"The Dragon in the Garden" is a joyous fanciful tale. It’s the kind of book you pick up when you want to curl up with a warm blanket, a cup of tea and a couple cookies and immerse yourself in a world full of legend and love. It’s a story of a world that we all wonder if we actually live in. Something special – very special – lays just beyond the mundane. ~ Kristi Reynolds, Amazon

• • •

but I just loved this book
Fantasy novels are not my usual "go-to" read, but I just loved this book! I was captivated by the story from the beginning. The writing is descriptive and I was able to visualize exactly what was happening. The characters are well-developed and it is easy to feel their connections with each other. Thoroughly recommend this book! I am looking forward to the next one! ~ Deborah Naccarini, Amazon

• • •

A supernatural allegory for maturing womanhood
With a degree in Medieval History and Biological Science, Erika Gardner is a perfect candidate for writing a fantasy blending mythology and science . . . I take The Dragon in the Garden as a parable of maturing womanhood and attempt to make sense of all-too-common (unfortunately) heartbreaks through the prism of allegoric imagination. ~ Marina J Neary, Amazon

 

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