Sorry to be so late with this.
For the first paragraph, a couple of general comments, first. Most of you went waaaayyyy beyond one paragraph. Also, a couple of them were very good except for a tendency to ricochet between present and past tenses.
Among those who disqualified themselves through length but whom I wish to mention as very, very good are Brendan and Behind The Pyramids. Among the verb tense disqualify the best was Ori's.
So -- now, the winner and the runners up. Email me at sahoyt - at- hotmail - dot - com for what your choice of my book is. The first place gets one of my books and Dragon's Ring. The others get one of my books, excepting the Shakespeare trilogy AND the first of the musketeers' mysteries (sorry, guys, but I'm down to two copies.)
First place -- Synova, for your first entry. You really couldn't improve on that!
Then Pam and Mike (for Mike's last. The others were way too long)
Now, Rowena's contest -- the winners are fourth guy and Brendan. Please email her at rowena -at- corydaniells (dot) com with your snail mail.