The following bit combines a lot of things (or, more correctly, ways of doing things) I've done before into one big blob. To begin with, the initial idea came to me in a dream, much like Blue Flash. The setting is on one of the Channel Islands, like RoC and the Sea – though this time on Santa Catalina – and which also like that is set in TrolleyWorld. Meanwhile, what's actually created here is not a story of TrolleyWorld, but a story from it, like Deadly Flash of Blue, the Doc Savage novel from Blue Flash's “Pasadena-D.”

But, even though the story would be just that in TrolleyWorld – a story – that doesn't mean I didn't go all mappy and stuff creating a TW-Santa Catalina and railroads and backstory...you know, like I do. So what I've ended up with is a story from TrolleyWorld and another chunk of TrolleyWorld to be what the author there set it in.

Confused anyone yet?

To break it down into two areas, the following is information on the “real” TrolleyWorld Santa Catalina –



TrolleyWorld Santa Catalina Island
Santa Catalina – Los Angeles County, Republic of California

Population: 41,020

Main City: Catalina City (pop. 17,400)

Other Cities/Towns: Caerleon (pop. 16,080), Fisherman's Village (pop. 125), Lyonesse (pop. 5,200), Norton Estates (pop. 340)

Education: Santa Catalina school district (eighteen schools), Universidad Nacional de California: Santa Catalina – UNSC (second youngest of its nine campuses).

Economy: Fishing, ranching, tourism, UNSC, ceramics.

Government: As a large island, separated from the mainland by thirty kims of ocean, Santa Catalina's government is somewhat unique. While legally a part of Los Angeles County and composed of six different incorporated communities, it acts like a single political entity, with a separate island council of eight members and a council head – sometimes referred to as “the Governor of Catalina” – along with the more normal city/town governments and county representatives. And while the Los Angeles County President and Board nominally have power over this council, in practice the island is allowed to make and live by its own political decisions with very little interference from “the mainland.”

However, only about a quarter of the island is privately owned. Fully three-quarters is made up of the “Catalina Nacional Park” and thus controlled by a mix of the Californian Parks Ministry, Los Angeles County, the island Council, and the Rancher's Union.

Transportation: Transport to/from the mainland for the island is via three ocean-going transport companies to the harbors at Henning Bay, Caerleon, and Twin Bays, with the Los Angeles Aero Line aerodyne company flying in to the “Airport in the Sky.”

On the island, most water transport is provide Ferrys de Catalina, a branch of California Coastal Railways ocean division's “Blue and Green Fleet” and land is by Catalina Island Railway, also owned (since 1973) by California Coastal. The island also has a large number of dirt and gravel roads connecting its cities, most sufficiently good to take ORVs, though the rest are limited to walking and horse travel.



Now, having made a “real” place in TrolleyWorld, next is the fiction that someone (suspiciously named “David Johnson”) wrote in TrolleyWorld, using that place as a backdrop. The Lady of the Isles series is a young adult trilogy telling the story of one Laura de Reynosa who, through unlikely events common to many such series, gets involved in a vast conspiracy to take over the island. And (again, as with such things) it's up to her to stop it.

Laura's IDAs far as style goes, think of it more of a 1950s/60s YA style (if occasionally “edgier” – it does have a war in it!) than a modern day YA series like “Hunger Games” or “Divergent” or such. And again, like many YA series, this particular one is a “reboot” of a much older version updated for a more modern period. For instance, Mexico as the “Evil Empire” has been replaced by Texas (Mexico remained the “bad guy” in a lot of Californian fiction long after relations between the two countries normalized. Still, the original Lady of the Isles series was unusual in still having it be the antagonist a good fifteen, twenty years after other authors had gone to the next and still current generic baddy, Texas), the magic of the “Lady of the Isles” that Laura originally used in her fight has been replaced by scientific-sounding “psychic powers” (just as non-existent, but less mystical) and indeed, the “Lady” herself has been replaced by, if by anything, a computer (or “analog information processor” on TrolleyWorld). And so on. As an alt-wikipedia article from TrolleyWorld on the series puts it:

Relation to the Original Books [edit]

Lady of the IslesThe original Lady of the Isles series was composed of eleven books, published between 1959 and 1967. Meant for a younger audience, they were both shorter and had less “adult” themes (while the villains were trying to start a war and usually carried guns, neither Laura nor any of the other main characters was hurt besides being “knocked out”[35]) than in the new series. Since it was much longer than the current trilogy, Laura repeatedly fought similar attempts by the antagonists to either buy out or chase away the populace of Santa Catalina. Book eight's plot is widely considered to be barely changed transparent copy of book three's, for example, right down to the scene where Laura breaks out of the back of the real estate office that is a front for the conspirators using her magic to make the lock tumblers line up due to their “memory” of what being open felt like.[36] This is a particularly lazy solution for an escape given that the villains had been making allowances for her magic since the fifth book, and would not have placed her in such a simple trap.

Still, they were very popular in their day and are looked back upon fondly by current adults who read them in their youth.

Laura landed with a thump...With the new series, very little of the original remains except for character names, some of the locations, and the basic idea of a young girl who must fight using powers she has gained to preserve her island home. Even many of the main concepts of the original were modified: Political changes over the years meant that the Mexico Empire as the “villain” was replaced by the Republic of Texas. Laura's powers were in the original described as “magic,” and came from the “Lady of the Isles,” a supposedly legendary figure from pre-Spanish times (a “legend” actually no older than, and created by, the books themselves[37]) who Laura actually meets on certain occasions within the series. In the new, her abilities are stated to be para-psychological ones, sparked within her by an accident with a science experiment, and the “Lady of the Isles,” while still a “legend” known to characters within the series, is only mentioned offhandedly once in the first book and never seen in any of them, save by some minor characters in the third book who begin to refer to Laura herself as such.[38]

In fact, the very reason for the conspiracy to take over Santa Catalina is changed. While in the original, there is a supposed “richest gold mine in the world” on the island, found by loyalists just before the revolution threw out Mexican rule in California and kept a secret all these years, in the new books, capturing the island is simply a first step by Texas towards bending California's will to itself and using it as a puppet to help take over most of western North America.

map of Texas's desiresAnd while in the last books of both series, Santa Catalina is invaded, in the original (War of the Isles), Mexico invasion seems to be limited to the island, for there is no mention of any other military action against California, either happening at the time nor threatened, and the assumption seems to be that they could simply take over the island without California doing anything to stop them.[40] In the new (Lady of the Isles), the landing is seen as part of a general blockade of California (including an admittedly unlikely alliance with Novy Rossiya), potential naval bombardment of several coastal cities, and troops gathering in Texas for an invasion of Northern Mexico, while the Californian military is shown fighting a major battle off of the Monterey coast.[41]

Side note: The footnote links there are just as fake as the article itself, and are only to help create that “Wiki” feel...



The following three pages are the promotional announcement by Freeman Press designed to go in magazines and newspapers in many TW North American nations (though not Texas – they don't have publishing rights in Texas. Another reason it's the baddie for the books). The bacover blurbs on the books gives you an idea of what the series would be about if I was to actually write it (which I'm not likely to, to be honest. A meta-Doc Savage book I can probably get away with – lots of Doc fans hungry for new material. A book that's fiction in another fiction I haven't even finished yet? Hah!) while the ad-copy guy gushes on on how great it is.

Side note, the three books are blue, green and white because someone thought that, stacked, they'd represent the blue of the ocean, the green of the island, and the white of the clouds.

Queen of Catalina

Prince of Texas

Lady of the Isles