Thrilled to support Diana in her blog tour for The Necromancer’s Daughter which I loved!
From Diana: Today I thought I’d share a snippet from Chapter 9 when Aster’s life takes a terrible turn:
In silence but for her heart’s pounding, Aster poured the tea and handed a wobbling cup to each man. As she knelt on the mat at her father’s knee, she stared at her pale hands. Her hair tumbled over her shoulders in a wild white froth. When she was a little thing, her father had called her his snow fairy, but in truth, she was nothing so delicate or whimsical. In contrast to the sunny complexions of Verdane, she was as ashen as death.
The king waited for her compliance, but how could she agree? Desperation marred his reasoning. She knew nothing about ruling, nothing about courtly manners or intrigue, or the tenets that underlay the Red Order’s intolerant faith. The kingdom’s powerful would trample her into the ground and seal her grave.
A healer and dabbler in the dark arts of life and death, Barus is as gnarled as an ancient tree. Forgotten in the chaos of the dying queen’s chamber, he spirits away her stillborn infant, and in a hovel at the meadow’s edge, he breathes life into the wisp of a child. He names her Aster for the lea’s white flowers. Raised as his daughter, she learns to heal death.
Then the day arrives when the widowed king, his own life nearing its end, defies the Red Order’s warning. He summons the necromancer’s daughter, his only heir, and for his boldness, he falls to an assassin’s blade.
While Barus hides from the Order’s soldiers, Aster leads their masters beyond the wall into the Forest of Silvern Cats, a land of dragons and barbarian tribes. She seeks her mother’s people, the powerful rulers of Blackrock, uncertain whether she will find sanctuary or face a gallows’ noose.
Unprepared for a world rife with danger, a world divided by those who practice magic and those who hunt them, she must choose whether to trust the one man offering her aid, the one man most likely to betray her—her enemy’s son.
A healer with the talent to unravel death, a child reborn, a father lusting for vengeance, and a son torn between justice, faith, and love. Caught in a chase spanning kingdoms, each must decide the nature of good and evil, the lengths they will go to survive, and what they are willing to lose.
The Necromancer’s Daughter by D. Wallace Peach
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
What a beautifully written fantasy book. Stunning prose, engaging characters and a simple but effective plot weave a rich tale of the love of a daughter for her father, and the concerns and morality of awakening the dead.
I loved it from start to finish. There is conflict, uncertainty and excitement, heartfelt scenes, and tender moments in this story.
Aster is a lovely character who the reader can’t help but warm to. The love interest between her and Joreh isn’t overstated, neither does it dominate the plot, instead their relationship gently grows as the story unfolds. I also love her father, Barus.
I was so glad how the story conclusion held such a complete awareness and understanding of love and life in such a sweet fulfilling way. I better say no more for fear of spoiling it for you!
I was also interested to read the inspiration behind the story – a retelling of the story of Kwan-yin from Chinese mythology. And the dragons… they were larger than life! And boy did they like their apples!
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A long-time reader, best-selling author D. Wallace Peach started writing later in life when years of working in business surrendered to a full-time indulgence in the imaginative world of books. She was instantly hooked.
In addition to fantasy books, Peach’s publishing career includes participation in various anthologies featuring short stories, flash fiction, and poetry. She’s an avid supporter of the arts in her local community, organizing and publishing annual anthologies of Oregon prose, poetry, and photography.
Peach lives in a log cabin amongst the tall evergreens and emerald moss of Oregon’s rainforest with her husband, two owls, a horde of bats, and the occasional family of coyotes.
Amazon Author’s Page: https://www.amazon.com/D.-Wallace-Peach/e/B00CLKLXP8