Action from the first page. – Amazon customer
Plenty of twists and turns. – Amazon customer
Smoke that does not rise. Hens that do not lay eggs. Cows that give sour milk. And a little girl abducted from her bed in the middle of the night. For the girl’s father, it’s clear evidence the Fey have breached the geas that bound them beyond the veil between worlds. For Lucas Veritatus, ex-Sheriff of the North Country, it is just enough to draw him out of retirement to investigate. For Avenyë of the Ronami, a lawless tribe beyond the reach of the king, it is evidence that whoever is abducting Ronami children, her sister included, has now struck the realm as well.
First to the Witch of the Great Wood, and then across the Dragon’s Ridge mountains into the territory of the lawless, Lucas and Avenyë must join forces in an unlikely pairing to solve the mystery. Who is stealing the children, murdering their parents, and leaving the mysterious Eye of Darkness marks throughout the land? Have the Fey found a way to cross the veil? Or is some other darkness at work? And will Lucas and Avenyë’s own dark secrets drive them into each other’s arms, or thrust them forever apart?
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About the Book…
This novel represents a dual experiment for me. The first is a foray into a genre that I have not tackled in over twenty years. I began writing around age ten as an avid fan of fantasy, spending countless hours banging away at different stories on a manual Smith-Corona typewriter in the basement of my parents’ house. But getting into college I shifted away from epic fantasy to suspense and action-adventure, in keeping with my changing tastes in books. Returning to it now has been a kind of rediscovery, remembering all that I loved about this genre as well as the particular challenges and pitfalls it presents.
The second part of the experiment is combining genres. I’m hardly the first to do this, but I wanted to blend the modern psycho-thriller of forensics and forays into the malevolent mindset with the epic fantasy novel, replete with swords and crossbows and horses and, naturally, magick. After a fashion, I was inspired by works as diverse as Umberto Eco’s The Name of the Rose as well as Barbara Hambly’s The Dark Hand of Magic and The Witches of Wenshar. And due respect must be given to Raymond Feist’s Faerie Tale, which first taught me how frightening faeries can be.
On the whole, I think, I’m rather pleased with the result. What surprised me most was the depth of Lucas Veritatus, the ex-Sheriff of the North Country and the hero of Eye of Darkness. No less than three additional story-lines presented themselves to me as I composed this tale—at least one of them going backwards into Lucas’s past, while the others explore his future. I’ve no doubt that we’ll be seeing more of him. I hope you enjoyed reading this introduction to his world as much as I enjoyed writing it.