"Rowan of the Wood", Winner of the Indie Excellence Award for Young Adult Fiction, tells the story of a young boy Cullen who meanders through the redwood forest every day on his way to school, losing himself in books and fantasy worlds full of elves, fairies, and wizards. He loves to escape to these magical lands because reality for him is not fun at all. Cullen and his two misfit friends, Maddy and April, are terribly unpopular amongst the other kids, and they regularly endure ridicule and bullying. Cullen's life changes incredibly one day when he uncovers an ancient magic wand that is inhabited by a powerful wizard, Rowan. Inadvertently, Cullen releases Rowan from the wand and finds himself possessed by the wizard, with a great power and an obsessive need to find a lost love. When danger is near, Rowan emerges from the frightened child to set things right. He and Cullen try to understand what has happened to them, only to discover a deeper problem. Nearly fourteen centuries ago, Rowan and his bride Fiana were separated on their wedding day. Rowan manages to survive, trapped in time, until Cullen releases him from the wand. Fiana uses dark magic to stay alive as she continues searching for Rowan. Over the centuries, Fiana descends deeper into the darkness becoming something evil and eventually giving up her search... until a young boy brings Rowan back to her.