My friend Hope Ann is releasing her book Shadow of the Hersweald tomorrow. It’s the third book in her fantasy retelling novella series and my favorite so far.
The fact that I enjoyed this one so much shows that I rather like anti-heroes. Because our main character Haydn is certainly an anti-hero. He’s got good intentions and he’s got boundaries, he’s not exactly a bad person, but as he says, “There are some who don’t deserve a pardon.” He’s determined to make sure they don’t get it.
The other characters are equally fascinating and very well developed for the length of the book. In fact the whole story felt much longer than a novella. The plot was very rounded and I got a great sense of this new part of the world.
The Hansel and Gretal aspect of the story became apparent pretty quickly, but it went places I didn’t expect it. I probably should have, but I don’t tend to doubt perfectly nice characters. Anyway siblings are one of my favourite character pairings and this didn’t disappoint.
If you like fairytale re-tellings or Christian fantasy, I highly recommend this. I’m looking forward to see what aspect of this diverse world Hope will bring out next.
About the Book
They would have to come that afternoon. Haydn glared at the rutted road twisted away from the gate beneath him, slithering into the shadows of the Hersweald. And what was the flaming idea behind leaving him in charge? Tregaron in the hands of a criminal… that would put them all in the good graces of the province governor, no questions asked.
A battered soldier from a defeated army, Haydn knows there is only one end to the arrival of the Prince’s governor. Except he hasn’t counted on the Prince himself. Or the pardon which his recent foe has declared to acquit all those who fought against him.
A pardon Haydn detests.
A pardon that refuses to punish the rebels now threatening his own village. And threatening his sister.
Guilt-ridden from his own actions during the war, Haydn knows there are others who have no conscience at all. Others who are using the freedom of the pardon to forward their own desperate schemes.
With enemies closing in on all sides, a pardon that refuses punishment, and nightmares of murder and fire haunting his every thought, will Haydn recognize the truth or will his fear condemn everything he loves to destruction?
Although the history of Aslaria and the conflict between the Prince and the rebel, Tauscher, flow chronologically through the series, each novella in the Legends of Light series is a stand-alone story. Each novella focuses on one of the nine aspects of the Fruit of the Spirit while twisting fairy tales in a clean, exciting, and inspiring manner.
“Open the gates, Dyfed,” Haydn called down. His voice jolted the men to their feet.
They sprang into action under the terse orders of a short figure with muscular arms. The heavy planked gates swung open with protesting groans. The great doors quivered against the earthen walls as the horsemen approached.
Mathias was in the lead. The man’s hair was grayer than last time. Thinner too, perhaps, but his grizzled face, set jaw, and sharp nose belied any change in either strength or personality. His blue eyes never glanced upward as Haydn saluted. But another pair did.
Haydn stared, his arm frozen in mid-motion. Traveon… Where had he come from? Of course, it was expected the governor would bring his son. Some said they’d reconciled during the war. Or maybe it had more to do with the death of Mathias’s wife.
Traveon’s lean face flashed a quick smile and his hand brushed his brown hair in a sharp salute. Haydn’s throat tightened, his breath hissing between compressed lips. He’d braced himself against arrest or judgment before his mother and Gorawen. But Traveon… He bit back an oath. Now they’d be one happy circle of family and old friends.
Haydn blinked and swallowed hard as the last horseman passed through the gates. He gave a quick nod to the men below and the doors squealed shut. Haydn pivoted. His boots clomped down the steps, each thud echoing like a heavy drumbeat.
“Keep watch until Eurof returns,” Haydn ordered over the heavy crash of the bar falling back into place.
About the Author
Hope Ann is a Christian authoress who lives on a small farm in northern Indiana. She was homeschooled and now helps teach several of her eight younger siblings.
She has been writing for over five years and has so many story ideas that she doubts she will ever stop. Her favorite genre to write is high fantasy with a touch of the allegorical. A close second is futuristic suspense. Her goal is to not only entertain with her stories but to provide inspirational fiction for young adults.
Predictably, she loves reading fantasy, fairy tales, mythology, and futuristic suspense. Her favorite authors include J. R. R. Tolkien, Charles Dickens, Frank Peretti, Mark Twain, and Serena Chase.
Her hobbies include photography, movie making, knitting, tree climbing, writing e-mails to friends, listening to Celtic music, and collecting shiny trinkets for story inspiration.
When the last time you got to dress up fancy?
I heard something about this week being #internationalprincessweek and though I want trying to dress up as a princess, the dress is shiny enough.
I made this dress for a Shakespeare Ball put on by fellow students in my historical dance class.
I put a lot of work into the underlays, which left me with barely enough time for the visible dress. Safety pins however are a costumers best friend and I ended up with something good enough for the night. I plan to make a new overskirt and and some sleeves before the next event I wear it to, but for now I'm going to take a break and get back to writing on writing.
#elizabethancostume #fancydress #fancydresscostume
There is a new book from @author.hope.ann! I had almost forgotten how much I love Hope's books, but just reading the blurb was enough to remind me. It sounds awesome.
Lillian helps Followers.
Royce hunts them.
With the appearance of a mysterious stranger who can spin heat into rain, their worlds collide in a storm of treason, local laws, and buried pasts that threaten to destroy them both.
And a teaser:
All the gold in the world won’t help Lillian and her city as they struggle against a drought. Rain on the other hand…
Rain might be worth more than blood.
#thestormbringersname #legendsoflight #legendsoflightseries #hopeann #fairytaleretellings #retoldfairytales #rumplestilskin #rumpelstiltskinretelling #fairytaleretelling #newbook #2022release #2022releases #fantasy #newfictionreleases #newfantasy #newfairytaleretelling #booksbooksbooks
Happy Birthday to Kendra E. Ardnek @fairytalearista, an awesome human and the creator of I've of my favourite fictional multiverses. May this be a year of more joy and less sorrow.
Now the best thing you can do for an authors birthday is buy their books. Kendra however had some of her books on sale, for FREE, from now until the 9th.
(For Kindle Unlimited readers, Kendra's books are always available to you.)
Included are ROSE PETALS AND SNOWFLAKES (Austen Fairy Tale #1), THE SEVEN DRAWERS (standalone and adorable), SEW, IT'S A QUEST and THE MERCHANT OF MENACE (Bookania Quests, the first book and the most recent one, many puns), and WATER PRINCESS, FIRE PRINCE (Rizkaland Legends #1, portal fantasy, prophecy, redheads, and quotes from classics). Also, THE WORTH OF A KING (standalone, probably the most traditional fantasy of Kendra's books, but also Rizkaland adjacent) is free the 8th and the 9th. Don't miss out.
I already own her books as ebooks, but as soon as my mail comes my physical collection will be a little closer to complete. (The other four books I own were hidden under the light blue fabric.)
#booksofinstagram #portalfantasy #fantasyromance #yafantasybooks #fairytalerelling #bookania #rizkalandlegends #janeaustenretelling #snowwhiteretelling #freeforkindle
Sort of. I'm not exactly attempting Nanowrimo, but I do have goals that involve writing a new book this month. Beginning it that is. I don't know when I'll get to the end.
What are your November plans? Or do you not really make plans and just freewheel madly through life? That can work too sometimes.
More on the plans and what adversely I'm writing is over on my blog.
Random fact: I don't really drink tea, but Taiwan milk tea is a different story. Probably because it's cold and has sugar.
I promise the random lace is relevant. Sort of. There's some mention of sewing in this book?
Yes, I'm making excuses, but the lace had just come in the mail and after I washed it, it was so delightfully messy. It's all ironed now.
As Long As We Live by @cortneymanningauthor is a lovely retelling of Snow White and Rose Red that sadly fell victim to my reading slump. However, it was also the book that helped me get out.
You should read it (probably, I don't want to tell people what to do, especially when it comes to their reading taste.) Of you want to know why you should read it, click the link in my profile to go to my review and find the excuses I have for not having reviewed it already.
#fairytalerelling #snowwhiteandrosered #snowwhiteroseredretelling #frostedroses #booksofinstagram #booksbooksbooks #beautifulbooks #bookswithfae #faerie #bookswithroyals #badbookstagramgoodbooks
Nadine Brandes has a new book coming next year. It's called Wishtress. Not Wishtrees, which is what I first read it about. Tress, like long hair and females, not trees with leaves.
It's been quite a while since I read any of Nadine's books, do I'm excited to see what this one is about.
The lovely graphic was designed by @meganmcculloughbooks
Nadine is @nadinebrandes
Happy Book Birthday to Runaway Lyrics by C. O. Bonham.
I have an interview of one of the characters over on my blog (link in profile) asking with directions to the rest of the blog tour. It's probably the character on the corner, but hard to be certain as this book features identical twins.
I can draw and I will now unleash my power across the world!
The power to visualise my costumes before I make them that is. My drawing skills aren't all that awesome, but I've gotten them to a useful level.
Moving on from discuss the troubles with clothing in writing fantasy, I'm now discussing making cosplay. In particular, I'm working on a design for Kyrin Altair from the Ilyon Chronicles.
Link is in my bio, the fact that it's now spring in Australia is not.
I just finished reading Prophet's Apprentice by Cassandra Boyson. I've read a lot of good books and I'm not sure I could call this one spectacular or groundbreaking in anyway, but I just really, really liked it.
It's a solid example of a book that uses fantasy to explore supernatural themes. Sort of a chosen one story, but not about being chosen as a hero to save the kingdom, but as a prophet to do, well, the weird stuff prophets get up to. Wyn doesn't really know what she's doing it why she's been chosen.
The characters are fun. Wynn is super capable, except when it comes to most prophet matters, Phillip keeps tripping over his own feet and the prophet is a nutter who adores Wynn, is both wise and child-like, and does everything the great one asks of him without being perfect.
It was a good book and I'm definitely planning to read more by Cassandra Boyson.