Review – Retreat to Avalon
Fifteen hundred years have turned history into legend…
After three generations of struggle against ruthless invaders, Britain has finally clawed its way back within reach of peace and prosperity. Across the sea, Rome is crumbling under an onslaught of barbarian attacks, internal corruption and civil war. Desperate for allies, Rome’s last great emperor looks to Britain and the rising fame of her High King, Arthur.
Arthur believes the coming war is inevitable, but many are opposed. Dissent, intrigue and betrayal threaten to tear the fragile British alliance apart from within, while the enemies of Britain wait for the first sign of weakness.
Gawain, a young warrior craving fame, is swept up in Arthur’s wake as the king raises an army. While his wife and kin face their own struggles at home, Gawain finds himself taking on more than he bargained for and heading into the greatest battle his people have faced in generations.
Gawain is a young warrior, newly married, restless for battle and excitement beyond his settlement but also dutiful to his family and his clan. The Romans have left Britain, but their influence remains. Other forces vie for control and intrigue and alliances are ephemeral.
This is Gawain’s coming of age, in many ways, fulfilling a duty for another man’s cause and finding battle and politics are bedfellows. He’s a complex character – tender to his wife, loyal to his friends and leaders but also headstrong, creative and brave. The author does not shy away from the grimness of battle, the emotions of the men, far away from home and in dangerous territory. There is humour, there is grief. There are conflicting thoughts and needs. There is a land left in limbo, with warlords grabbing what they can.
There is Arthur.
King Arthur is a warrior – charismatic to an almost supernatural degree, yet a man, with a man’s weaknesses – rage, impatience, even hubris. He is a legend but a fragile one. He is the ultimate warrior-king. There is no magic, at least no obvious magic. Merlin appears, he is a mysterious figure with many allies and legends of his own. This is a time when Christianity was new to Britain and many of the old ways and believes lingered. Merlin knows it. Is he a wizard? Yes. Does he cast any obvious magic? No, but that makes him more intriguing and I really hope he appears in later books.
The author weaves a building tale of loyalty and what price that demands. His worldbuilding is detailed and rich, with the complexities of a society finding a new identity in an uncertain world. It’s far more historically accurate than many of the Arthurian legends and tales.
The emotive characters capture the reader and bring to life the trials of living in such a world as this, and such a time as this.
Some of the scenes are long, perhaps a little too detailed – such as the training scenes and day to day camp business, but overall a really good read.
The Third Edition Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles Book I is now available in Large Print format – currently on Amazon only – but should aggregate to the Barnes and Noble online store in a few weeks.
In a dark world where magic is illegal, and elves are enslaved a young elven sorceress runs for her life from the house of her evil Keeper. Pursued by his men and the corrupt Order of Witch-Hunters she must find sanctuary. As the slavers roll across the lands stealing elves from what remains of their ancestral home the Witch-Hunters turn a blind eye to the tragedy and a story of power, love and a terrible revenge unfolds.
18 rated. Amazon, Audible, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and more on the link below.
In a dark world beset by tyranny and lies can love and magic entwined bring freedom? A dark adult fantasy with sizzling sorcery, romance and revenge.
Erana er en verden full av magi og selv om forbudt, holder trolldommen seg fast for trolldom er mektig og følger ingen lov. Det er en verden styrt av undertrykkelse, men håpet vandrer i skyggen, alltid letende etter en sjanse til å blomstre. Det er en verden full av kjærlighet og fortvilelse i like mengder. Dette er fortellingene og mytene fra en slik verden.
Amazon UK https://amzn.to/3cP3IHM
Prisbelønnet fantasi, historisk fantasi og erotisk fantasi forfatter.
Britisk fødte A.L. Butcher er en ivrig leser og skaper av verdener, en poet og en drømmer, en elsker av vitenskap, naturhistorie, historie og aper. Hennes prosa har blitt beskrevet som ‘mørk og mektig’ og hennes poesi som ‘tankevekkende’. Hun skriver med en sikker og noen gang erotisk følsomhet om ting som kunne ha vært, ikke var, men kan bli.
Alex er forfatter av ‘Light Beyond the Storm’ krønikeren og ‘Tales of Erana’ lyrisk fantasi serie. Hun har også skrevet flere korte historier i fantasi og romantisk fantasi stil, og har streifet innom gotisk skrekk stil, innkludert ‘Legacy of the Mask’ serien. Med en bakgrunn i politikk, klassiske studier, oldtids historie og myte, bringer hun et eklektisk og unikt preg til arbeidet sitt, som blander virkelighet og drøm i alkymistiske deler og bringer figurene og verdenene til live.
What stalks the land cannot be but is.
Where magic is outlawed a troll Shaman calls from her deathbed to her heiress, Mirandra Var, daughter of the storm. Mirandra vows to find her missing kin, sort friend from foe, and claim the dangerous secrets guarded by unthinkable creatures. If she succeeds, she will become the leader of her tribe. If she fails, there will be no tribe to lead.
Amz UK audio https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B08K3SDVBS/
Deep in the rain forests of Guatemala, an ancient Mayan temple holds a mythical secret. The legendary Fountain of Youth lies within, but not all myths are fairy tales. The temple ruins have been seized by the Core, a sinister cult determined to unlock the mysteries of immortality.
When their captured friends are spotted near the temple, Bobby and his cousin Jinx must journey into the dark heart of the jungle to save them. Harnessing their extraordinary abilities, the boys will undertake an epic quest to fulfill a centuries-old prophecy.
Cut off from their allies, Bobby and Jinx combat supernatural barriers, raging rivers, and deadly beasts. They’ll face savage natives, vengeful ghosts, and ruthless mercenaries who can conjure a person’s darkest fears. Past and present will collide, with the power of eternity on the line. Can Bobby fulfill the prophecy and lay the temple’s spirits to rest? If not, Bobby and his friends may become permanent inhabitants of the Temple of Eternity.