Welcome to The Book of Three!
This is my graphic adaptation of the first book in The Chronicles of Prydain, a series of children's books by Lloyd Alexander, an award-winning American author. The Book of Three was first published in 1964.
This series of five books is a coming-of-age tale using the classic monomyth framework, a high fantasy written for children but often beloved by adults, who remain the most ardent fans.
My adaptation is a labor of love. It is unauthorized, and the original books are still under copyright. My only profit in its creation is the joy and satisfaction of making this world come to life in a visual format, and connecting with other fans of the series.
If you enjoy this comic, and want to read more, (because it's slow going and I'll never get around to all five books!) please purchase The Chronicles of Prydain and support these great classics. If I, through these pages, inspire one person to read them who otherwise would not, I consider this a success.
Final Note: if you remember the 1984 Disney animated feature, The Black Cauldron, you will find much you recognize. That film was based, extremely loosely, on the first two books of this series. While it was groundbreaking in terms of animation, it fails on every conceivable level as a faithful adaptation. Disney announced in 2016 that they had re-optioned the film rights and were planning live action films - however, as of January 2022, there has been no further news on this topic.
Aaaaaah I've loved this book since I was eight! This looks great! Excuse me. Gotta squee some more.
Aww, so glad you found me, and hope you continue to enjoy this. If you're interested, I have done a lot of other straight illustrative work on the series. It's on my gallery at dA: http://saeriellyn.deviantart.com/
I have not even read page one of this, but I subscribed anyway. "Munchings and crunchings!" Awesomeness :D
Hooray more subscribers! :) Leapings and shriekings of joy!!
Hope you like my interpretation. Thanks for commenting!
This is mighty fine work which I only just discovered today, sorry for overlooking you!!
Thanks! Not much of an overlook...I've only been here about 12 hours. lol Thanks for the comment!
So pretty. Especially the blonde girl.
Since you do not know her name, I take it you are a stranger to this book. Welcome! That doesn't happen much. My fan base mostly already knows this story, so it's nice to hear an opinion from somebody getting it fresh through my work. I hope you'll continue to let me know what you think!
I love your work! I reread the series at least once a year, and I'm so glad that you're faithful to it. (One thought though, I was hoping to see a shaggier Gurgi.)
He may well look different once I get to him in Chap 2. This cover was done as a separate project and there are some discrepancies, but overall it worked well enough to use.
Glad you like it! Please don't hesitate to share your thoughts! Hearing from fans really helps keep me motivated.
OMG!!!!!! I was totally thinking about doing something like this (in manga style) but seeing this is amazing! I am soooo looking forward to reading this! Fantastic art, and one of my FAVORITE stories (like, it's up there with The Hobbit and The Enchanted Forest Chronicles!!!)
Super cool (I'm really excited!)I hope you end up doing the whole series :D (no pressure, no pressure at all!)
lol, yes, I already have friends expressing anticipation over the appearance of Adaon, or how I'm going to adapt Taran Wanderer. I can only think as far as the next chapter or I get totally overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of this project. If I get through Book One I will consider it a near-miraculous accomplishment!
Glad you like it and always happy to hear from another fan of the series.
Finally! I have time to myself to view your amazing work, Dawn. Now if I can only get some more stuff done...
This was my first fantasy series. A great pleasure in my life was making it my 2 sons' first fantasy series. We all love it.
Now I get the pleasure of introducing them to your wonderful adaptation. Thanks!
My sincere pleasure. Hope you guys enjoy reading as much as I enjoy creating.
I was directed here by the below link. This has been/is one of my favorite series of books, right up there with LOTR and my all time favorite The Unlikely Ones. That book is really amazing.
I wanted to complement you on your artwork. Believe me, I know about passion projects, (Had a fourteen year adventure in LA trying to sell the screenplay to Unlikely Ones.) and this looks really cool.
Disney just bought the rights to the series, and as Producers really get drawn to Graphic Novels, (See what I did there?)
you might want to send Disney a link to your site. I've worked with illustrators, and you are as good if not better.
Thank you so much Greg. I get a huge traffic surge every time that Vox article surfaces, but the vast majority of viewers never interact. I so appreciate your taking the time to give feedback.
I'm well aware of what's going on with Disney and am of several minds on it. Though nothing would make me happier than to be rewarded (by something other than personal satisfaction, which is substantial, let me add) for my work on this project, my first instinct about approaching them is to fear that they would exercise their clout to shut me down. I know back in the day with Narnia they threw their weight around at anyone using the name in domains, etc. It's unlikely that whatever they decide to do with a film will follow the books as faithfully as I am doing, and frankly, I'd rather stick with Alexander's vision than Hollywood's.
I am musing on the possibility of approaching the books' publishers via an agent, though. If something like this were to go to print I think it ought to fall under their jurisdiction. So we shall see!
that looks interesting subscribed *thumbsup*
Awesome, thanks for the sub! Hope you enjoy.
My favorite book ever! I hope you get to The High King! Sub button clicked.
I don't know how I missed this comment back in September - my apologies! Hope you are enjoying this, and egads...High King? We'll see! It'll be a miracle if I finish this one!
I love your Gurgi and Doli, so much better than the stupid Disney versions!
Thanks! Not fond of the Disney versions myself, which I'm sure comes as no surprise, haha.
Just started reading the Chronicles of Prydain to my mum, and being also a lover of graphic novels, I am thrilled to find your site! I shall savour every page, and congrats on your fantastic and imaginative representation of an awesome book!
I'm so glad to hear it! These books are meant to be shared - hope you continue to enjoy the comic! :)
And this was the first page, when all begins to star :)
Starting from the beginning :)
You will see a large range of quality! I didn't know ANYthing about comic-making when I began this project!
Wow, so you have a natural talent, because your storytelling (and art) is catchy :)
This is truly amazing. I need this for our Library!
Well...you're welcome to it, for a virtual library at any rate! :)
For doing this. Loved these books for 50 years. Seeing this strip is a dream come true!
Is it weird that I've never heard of this?
Nah - though as another...ahem..."senior" member of this site, it's weirder for you than most of its userbase. This series was published in the 60s - a brilliant set of books, sadly underrated in today's literature market. Holds its own with Narnia and IMO surpasses it in some ways. Alexander has been called the father of American fantasy...not many others were writing such work on this side of the ocean at the time.
Great books for the homeschooled kids. A level of character building you won't find in much of today's pop literature.
If you ever saw Disney's 1984 animated film The Black Cauldron, it was (VERY loosely and badly) based on these books.
You've accomplished so much since I first stumbled upon your work in early 2015. That was back when I was working on my own Prydain labour of love. I'm amazed by how invested you are in all your Prydain wanderings, based on the evidence I've seen on facebook, and the brilliant art you create.
I do hope that whatever happens with any future Prydain ventures from Disney, they do justice to the material, as you have.
Many thanks, Brendan! I noticed all the facebook notifications. :) Well met and welcome - clearly a kindred spirit. Hope you continue to enjoy.
I love how you made the characters into a graphic novel i had read the original books and they are amazing! And what you did was a brilliant idea to make it into a graphic novel! I was wondering,will you ever get this published? When you you have it completed and everything.
I wish I could, but the books are still under copyright by the publisher, so unless they authorize it, I can’t legally do that. Technically, even putting it online is against the rules, but most publishers don’t go after fan material, and I hope they just consider it free publicity! Glad you found me!
Really cool idea. I feel like my childhood heroes are back! Thank you for bringing the stories into the public eye again.
I dunno how public it is, but I’d do it anyway! Thanks for the encouragement and I’m so happy you found this.
Thank you so much!
I have just found this and blew through it all in one sitting. So glad to find others who have such a love for this wonderful series. Please keep up the good work!
Oh I'm so happy you found it. Thanks so much for commenting! Stay tuned; we've still got five chapters to go!
Wow. One of my favorite books of all time nxt to LOTR and Chronicles of Narnia. My first time encountering your work. Congratulations on the artwork keep up the good work.
Even though the 1984 Disney animated film made a poor adaptation to the books, I still appreciate the movie cause I got introduced to the books through the movie.
An accurate or close-to-the film adaptation to the books will be terrific to see. The story of Taran was so engaging has depth of wisdom. Lloyd Alexander was a master of his craft.
Oooh, welcome and thank you for commenting! I’m so happy you have found the comic!
Wow, your artwork is exquisite. I love this story and you brought this to life. I have young kids who struggle with reading. However, your comic is making this book an exciting pleasure to read. Thank you so much. Thank you on behalf of my students.
Oh, what a pleasure to hear that. I am so glad I can help introduce your kids to Prydain! Thank you for your comment!
I loved the series as a boy. Though I think the Disney version is underrated and am a bit annoyed that Eilonwy was snubbed as a Disney Princess, it's still wonderful to see a more faithful rendering of the original. Excellent work!
We do not discuss the Disney version around here; I am STILL bitter about it, and about their subsequent shenanigans with the film rights. But thank you, welcome, and I am so glad you enjoy my adaptation! :)
I am amazed at your skill, and appreciate the love and care you have demonstrated in what I have seen so far. This is my favorite book series of all time, and the books that helped me fall in love with books 34 years ago. Keep up the fantastic work. I look forward to more!
Thank you, so kind of you to say, and I have every intention! Stick around!
how it this not actually published??! it looks amazing. Thank you!!
My pleasure! Thank you so much for reading!
Just discovered all this -- the books/ your work and my heart is in rapture. Your illustrations are so beautiful, thank you for this gift!!
Oh I’m so glad you found me! Thank you for the comment!
I have enjoyed this so much it brought me to tears. I grew up with these books back in the 80s. I'm trying to find a way to sponsor you.
Oh goodness. Please, no need for that. Just join the discussion, be a part of our fan community, and share with any other fans of the series you know. That is all the reward I’ve ever wanted. 🥰
I remember reading The Book of Three back when I was a kid, but I never got around to reading the other four books. Now, as an adult, I read all the TvTropes entries on the Chronicles of Prydain, so I know how the entire story goes, but I just purchased the box set of the CoP and just finished rereading The Book of Three after catching up on your webcomic.
Now I'm reading The Black Cauldron and I'm going to finish the rest of the Chronicles properly even though I already spoiled myself at TvTropes. And it's all thanks to this webcomic that I finally got off my duff to finish this story properly. :-)
Oh I’m so thrilled to hear you’ve gotten back into this world! I hope you enjoy and are inspired by the rest of the books! Thank you for this kind encouragement - much appreciated.
In the last week or so, I finished The Book of Three, The Black Cauldron, AND The Castle Of Llyr. I'm about almost halfway through Taran Wanderer now (I just finished the part about the "cow dispute"). I should have Taran Wanderer and The High King done inside a week.
I love this story!
Hoo, well, buckle up - The High King will have you in tears before the end!
If you have Facebook, hunt up Prydain Fans United and you'll find a big group of like-minded fans to chat with about the books. :)
Just finished The High King a few days ago. I knew the ending was going to be bittersweet, but DAMN...
But the ending was so awesome, I reread the last few pages of THK five more times over the past couple of days just because I didn't want to say goodbye to Taran and Eilonwy and all the rest so soon. Looks like I'll have to try to find Prydain Fans United on Facebook soon!
Ahhhh welcome to the club! Also now that you’re done...you know what fanfiction is, I presume? There’s a brilliant sequel to the novels on FanFiction.Net - look up The Scion in the Lloyd Alexander section, and you won’t have to leave your friends behind.
The Scion at FanFiction.net in the Lloyd Alexander section, got it. Thanks!
Disney just bought the rights to the series, and as Producers really get drawn to Graphic Novels, (See what I did there?)
They’ve owned the rights for decades and reoptioned them something like six or seven years ago, but they’ve released zero official info on a live action version, and I frankly don’t believe they have any intention of making it. I will be thrilled to be wrong on this - but I wish I had any hope of them doing justice to it.
Loved every panel!!! The Book of Three was given to me as a birthday gift from my brother. This book is special to me because the book got me to enjoy reading. I could not wait to get the rest of the Chronicles fast enough! It was wonderful to see your labor of love out here and bringing the beloved Companions to life! I believe you're spot on with your renderings of the characters. Much love from Virginia USA!!!
Thank you Joe! It’s always great to hear from loyal fans!
This book is amazing and I found out about it In language arts class, PS I LOVE THE WAY TARAN LOOKS
I've been following this graphic novelization for years, and I've been meaning to reread it from the beginning. I just finished a full reread of the series, so now seems like the perfect time! One often hears that artists always appreciate feedback even on older works, and I hope that's true, since I plan on commenting as I read.
I first found this comic when doing google image searches for fan art of Prydain characters, and yours kept appearing and it became clear that they were part of a larger work. Your designs do SUCH a good job of capturing the characters in an instantly recognizable way that feels right, even if they aren't always exactly how I imagined them myself. And in most cases, they are just as I pictured them! It can be rare to find fanart that meshes so perfectly with your own interpretation of the characters, so we are incredibly lucky that you have created such an excellent graphic novel of The Book of Three.
Oh you are most definitely welcome to comment at any time! I think sometimes about how sad I’ll be once I’ve completely finished this, and it falls off the “new updates” list, and people gradually forget about it. By then I’ll no doubt have found something else to work on to take its place that will hopefully continue to engage fans of the series, because the community of friends I’ve formed through it has become very dear to me.
Thanks so much for these kind words on it - it’s always gratifying to hear that my interpretations hold up to others’, though I’m not offended when they don’t mesh. I see them so clearly now that it’s difficult for me to imagine them any other way, and consider myself lucky to be able to depict them in a way that satisfies both me and others.
I for one will not forget about it, not if I live to be a hundred. :)
I love this! I've been a huge Alexander fan since first reading "The Black Cauldron" (I know, out of order) in 6th grade -- 40 years ago (ahem)! There is a fascinating documentary of Alexander online which has added tremendous depth to what was, for me, already an incredibly meaningful series. Like another commenter says, your Gurgi and Doli, and really all the companions, look great!
I am a fan of the documentary by Jared Crossley! A few very old pieces of my artwork appear in it, in fact. It’s a fine piece of film. Pleased you found the site! You’re in good company.
Awesome! (I registered and acquired a screen name in the meantime.) Will have to check it out again. What items of your art are in it? I have the DVD but it's also on YouTube as I'm sure you know.
It’s been so long I don’t remember all of them! But I think he used this one: https://www.deviantart.com/saeriellyn/art/Last-Treasure-of-LLyr-79797378
And if you go through my gallery over there I’m sure you’ll recognize others.