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Friday, October 5, 2007

The Anvil Stone: Book 3 of the Macsen's Treasure Series

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In fifth-century Britain, only a few souls believed Merlin the Enchanter’s prophecy, that the “once and future king” called Arthur would one day rescue them from fierce and deadly Saxons. In a world where “king” simply meant “warlord,” many wondered: would there even be a Britain left for Arthur to rule once he was born and old enough to wield a sword of his own?

One man refused to let that dream fade into nightmarish despair…

“Freedom is all that matters.” So says spy and master of disguise Marcus ap Iorwerth of his greatest dream. For years, he has courageously struggled to unite Britain’s feuding internal factions and derail the ever-encroaching Saxon threat that has made his homeland a deadly place.

So when a mysterious stranger delivers a gruesome, bloodstained effigy fashioned to look like him, Marcus immediately knows it’s both a warning and a challenge. He and his wife Claerwen—whose gift of second sight makes her a target as well—run headlong into the daunting fray. Rival factions are instigating war both among themselves and with the Saxons, and while Marcus sets out to quash their treachery, Claerwen discovers another crisis. Those same factions have mounted a desperate search for one of Britain’s most cherished symbols—a magnificent sword of the ancient high kings that has been lost for decades. She knows the sword must be found; it is part of Britain’s future and will pass to a great king called Arthur who has been prophesied to come. With battle about to erupt all around, Marcus learns the stranger, an assassin bent on killing him, may be one of the last sources that could lead him and Claerwen to the sacred sword.

Recipient of:
2006 Colorado Independent Publishers Book Awards ("Evvy" Award), 3rd Place, Fiction Category
2007 Eric Hoffer Book Award, Notable, Fiction Category
2007 Independent Publisher Book Award ("IPPY" Award), Bronze Medalist, Fantasy Category

In the Shadow of Dragons: Book 2 of the Macsen's Treasure Series

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It is said that long before the Dark Age king of the Britons called Arthur was ever heard of, his golden reign was prophesied, and after decades of invasion and civil violence had wracked post-Roman Britain, his presaged leadership offered a rare promise of future peace. Events leading to that time—some of them full of hope, more often full of sacrifice—inevitably began to fall into place…

When the mysterious druid Myrddin Emrys—known in legend as Merlin the Enchanter—is certain the high king is in imminent danger of yet another assassination attempt, he summons iron-willed spy and master of disguise Marcus ap Iorwerth to unearth the conspirators and destroy their plots. Marcus reluctantly agrees to help after his wife Claerwen, driven by her otherworldly gift of visions, insists that she must accompany him on the quest.

It is soon discovered that Pascentius, the youngest son of an earlier and well-hated king, is allied with dreaded Saxon mercenaries and readily poised to reclaim his father’s throne. But before Marcus and Claerwen can spoil his plans, a second conspiracy of personal revenge closes in on them. Falsely declared fugitives by the very ones they had sought to help, they become trapped in a labyrinthine intrigue between their accusers and the traitors. In a desperate race against time, they must endure hardship and profound personal loss, while pushing Britain towards freedom, peace, and the future called Arthur.

Recipient of the 2002 Colorado Independent Publishers Book Award for Fiction ("Evvy" Award)

Into the Path of Gods: Book 1 of the Macsen's Treasure Series

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They placed themselves into the path of gods, the gods of the ancient Celtic people: a man of incorruptible courage, a woman with the ethereal gift of visions, and the mysterious druid who became known in legend as Merlin the Enchanter…

In the war-torn fifth century, after the end of Roman rule and before King Arthur’s rise to power, spy and master of disguise Marcus ap Iorwerth diligently works to place the rightful high king in control of Britain. One of his duties, discrediting brokers of foreign mercenaries, leads him to Claerwen, an ethereal woman whose gift of visions draws him into the path of gods, a destiny as unshakable as the love they come to share.

In time, they realize Claerwen has inadvertently become ensnared in a lethal conspiracy to locate the priceless sacred symbols of Britain’s high kings. Known collectively as Macsen’s Treasure and lost for decades, the symbols have become the target of a mazelike network of unknown enemies seeking power. Claerwen knows nothing of the treasure and Marcus makes every effort to protect her, but he is betrayed and disappears. Alone and homeless, Claerwen must decide whether to believe what everyone tells her, that Marcus is dead and she should go into hiding, or to follow her instinct and the path of gods on a daunting quest to find him and the truth of Macsen’s Treasure.
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