Demolishing the Stronghold Author Interview and Giveaway!

About the Book

Book: Demolishing the Stronghold

Author: Allen Brokken

Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy

Release Date: November 4, 2023

Lauren, Aiden, and Ethan finally found respite for their whole family in the grove surrounding the Wellspring of Life. However, the threat of the Dark One’s forces still looms over the Heathlands, and lighting the tower of Light in Blooming Glen is their only hope of cleansing their land of The Darkness once and for all. While the family plans a surprise attack on the stronghold at Blooming Glen, the Bishop calls forth the Calamitous Drake, a monster forged from the essence of The Darkness in the corrupted heart of the Iron Mountain. In the midst of the battle, the monster scatters the family, leaving Mother, Uncle, and Tye in the hands of Lord Refi’Cul and the evil giant Skull Crusher who aims to make Tye his wife and become the Master of the Heath Wardens

The children must take to the skies to forge a weapon capable of defeating the Calamitous Drake. Will Lauren, Aiden, and Ethan’s faith give them the strength to Demolish the Stronghold?Click here to get your copy!

About the Author

Allen Brokken is a teacher at heart, a husband, and a father most of all. He’s a joyful writer by the abundant grace of God. He began writing the Towers of Light series for his own children to help him illustrate the deep truths of the Bible in an engaging and age-appropriate way. He’s dedicated 18 years to volunteer roles in children’s ministry and youth development. Now that his children are off to college, he’s telling stories and sharing clean humor on social media.

More from Allen

As I worked to close out the Towers of Light series, I had to work hard to develop something new and different that still fit the 1800s frontier setting.  I had a lot of pressure from my readers to bring a dragon to the prairie.  On multiple occasions, I had to remind my biggest fans that there aren’t any dragons on the prairie.  But they were insistent that dragons make an appearance.

So, as I put the final touches on the previous book, Wellspring of Life, I thought that the censors spreading evil could bring evil things into the world to corrupt the prairie. So, the concept of a dragon formed from the censor’s smoke made a lot of sense.  But what would a “Smoke Dragon” be like?  I shared the idea with my Realm Makers critique group, and they helped form something that early feedback says works well.  The dragon’s name, The Calamitous Drake, is also an homage to a line from “The Hobbit” that refers to Smaug as a great calamity.

With a dragon flying about, I also had to devise a way for the kids to engage it in the air.  This took significant research as I didn’t want to introduce giant eagles or something else that didn’t exist on the frontier.  As I investigated different options, I discovered that hot air balloons were more common in the 1800’s than I thought.  It turned out they served in minor roles during the Civil War and used a technology they called a gasifier to fill them up.  I took some artistic liberty with that, and Lauren, Aiden, and Ethan now had a way to get off the ground to meet the dragon in the air.

This story was so much fun to write, and early reviews from my biggest fans say it was the perfect end to the series.

Author Interview

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your book?

I learned a ton about hot air balloons and how they worked in the 1800’s.  I had no idea they creating things like something they called a gasifier to fill them up.  Really interesting stuff.

Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?

The one thing I kept hearing over and over was they wanted Dragons! “But there aren’t any dragons on the Prairie!” I would reply.  However, they insisted and in the end I feel like as an author you should listen to your audience when they REALLY, REALLY want something.  So I figured out a way to create a dragon for this book.

How do you overcome writer’s block? Do you have any advice for others in finding their process to overcome it? 

Time on my hands is my worst enemy. When I have no deadlines or far away deadlines, I just end up with fanciful ideas bouncing around in my head with no outlet. Give me a deadline, even a self-imposed deadline and words fill the page. Everyone is different.  Sometimes it is just a matter of learning what days and times you are most productive.

Do you read the genre you write? Why or why not?

Yes, it’s important to know what is out there and what your stories are comparable to.  It’s also good to be able to give good recommendations to others and to support other authors. I like funny kid books. Something that takes the edge off. Iggy and Oz and the Soda Pop Wars, by JJ Johnson, or I’d Punch a Tiger in the Eye for You by Ben Wolf come to mind.

How did you come up with the title for your book?

It came from the Bible, the idea of demolishing spiritual strongholds.  This book symbolizes God’s ultimate victory, so I thought it was a fitting title.

What’s your favorite writing snack, drink, and/or music?

Coffee, lots of coffee!  I also tend to listen to video game sound tracks when I like .  They tend to add to the suspense of the stuff rolling around in my brain.

Blog Stops

Artistic Nobody, November 11 (Author Interview)

Fiction Book Lover, November 12 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 12

Texas Book-aholic, November 13

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 14

Guild Master, November 15 (Author Interview)

Lots of Helpers, November 15

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 16

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, November 17 (Author Interview)

Blogging With Carol, November 18

Blossoms and Blessings, November 19 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, November 20

A Reader’s Brain, November 21 (Author Interview)

For the Love of Literature, November 22

Lights in a Dark World, November 23

Beauty in the Binding, November 24 (Author Interview)


To celebrate his tour, Allen is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.


  1. Thank you for sharing your interview, bio and the book details, I have enjoyed reading about you and your work and I am looking forward to reading Demolishing the Stronghold with my grandchildren

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