Bestselling fantasy/middle-grade author Brandon Mull completed 2018 with the release of his newest book Dragonwatch, Book 2: Wrath of the Dragon King. The highly anticipated followup to the hit YA/middle-grade series introduces powerful new talisman, as draconic dominion threatens to overtake Earth. Dragonwatch, Book 2: Wrath of the Dragon King brings readers back to the hidden dragon sanctuary of Wyrmroost, where turmoil is already on the horizon for its inhabitants. The dragons have officially declared war on humans, after suffering a humiliating defeat at the hands of heroic protagonists Kendra and Seth. Now, two of the seven dragon sanctuaries have fallen… and Wyrmroost has become the third target. So YEM spoke with Brandon Mull about his writing inspiration and what readers can expect from the newest Dragonwatch novel.
Young Entertainment Mag: So, how did you first get involved in writing? Also, who are your writing influences?
Brandon Mull: As a kid, C.S. Lewis showed me how imaginative books can be with his Narnia series. Tolkien taught me fantasy can feel as real as history with Lord of the Rings. And J.K. Rowling proved that with young main characters, a smart and twisty story, and rich world building, you can write a story that both young and old readers could enjoy. Those are the kind of stories I try to write.
YEM: What inspired you to write the Dragonwatch series?
Brandon: In the Fablehaven series, the largest and most dangerous wildlife parks for magical series are the dragon sanctuaries, but we only spent time at a dragon sanctuary in one of the Fablehaven books. I dreamed up some new adventures for my main Fablehaven characters that happen mostly at the dragon sanctuaries and a new series was born.
YEM: So tell us about the newest book in the Dragonwatch series, Wrath of the Dragon King.
Brandon: In Wrath of the Dragon King we have Celebrant, king of the dragons, declaring war against the caretakers of his sanctuary and all humankind. An evil unicorn gets involved as a villain, and some unexpected flying creatures join the adventure. So Kendra and Seth have their hands full as they try to survive a dragon revolt and reclaim a cursed castle.
YEM: How did you create the world of Wyrmroost? Was it hard to create the idea of a hidden dragon sanctuary?
Brandon: I spend a lot of time daydreaming to create my magical wildlife sanctuaries. I imagine many powerful magical creatures trying to coexist in relatively close confines. So I build a complex history with hidden treasures and lost secrets. And I look for details that intrigue and excite me. To me that part of the work is very fun, though it takes a lot of effort.
YEM: Did you have a favorite fantasy book series growing up?
Brandon: Narnia was my favorite series as a kid.
YEM: Finally, if you had a dragon of your own, what would you name it?
Brandon: I would name my dragon Raxtus for good luck (because he’s just about the only nice dragon in the series).