through the land of illusion 

By Gunnar E. Garrett Jr.


​Fifteen-year-old Anika had no idea she’s descended from royalty and comes from an enchanted land in another realm. The only magic in her life is her grand magician father, William, whose clever performances always draw admiring crowds. Anika starts practicing a few tricks of her own—but disappearing was never on her list. When she’s confronted by two strange men searching for a pocket watch connected to Cora, her deceased mother, Anika is stuffed into a wooden magician’s box and transported to the land of Valgard.

There, she meets Eris, one of the kingdom’s four sibling rulers—who also happens to be Anika’s aunt. Eris needs help reuniting the kingdom, requiring the stones of the Gods, given to each sibling after the king’s death, to do so. One of the stones belongs to Eris’s illusionist brother, Merrick.

Anika is shocked to discover that Merrick is the reason her father fled Valgard years before—and that he’s holding her mother captive. Eager to help, Anika agrees to steal his stone to free her mother. But something about Eris’s elaborate tale doesn’t add up, causing Anika to question who the real threat is—and if perhaps she is aiding the wrong side.​

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​Dark secrets are unearthed and shocking twists await two families in this thriller set in rural Alabama.

Abby and her mother, Karen, are starting over. They’ve just traveled all the way from California to Alabama to escape their troubled past. Eddie, Abby’s father, is no longer with them—as Karen explains to their new neighbor and her son, Lucas, when they arrive at their new home. 

Lucas and Abby get off on the wrong foot when they take a tour of the town and stumble across a couple of bullies. After all, it’s a blow to Lucas’s pride when a girl tries to defend him. But soon after, a genuine friendship grows between the oddly matched pair. Romance blooms as they bond over the things they have in common.

But one night, everything changes. Violence erupts and insidious influences are revealed in a macabre twist, and it’s unclear who can be trusted. Lucas and Abby become closer than ever—a family of sorts. In fact, they’re about to go into the family business, but everything’s not as it seems.

From the award-winning screenplay comes My Father’s Joy, a thriller that examines the sinister depths of family ties.

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My Father's Joy 

By Gunnar E. Garrett Jr.