Hi, all! It's been a fabulous reading week chez moi. I'm hoping it continues beyond this week, but I am ending on a high note with the third title in Douglas Nicholas's excellent dark fantasy series, Throne of Darkness. And thanks to the publisher I'm able to offer up a copy of this latest release to one of you lucky readers. (If you haven't read Something Red or The Wicked just yet, I am giving away a copy of Red here.)
Molly and her troupe find themselves in an odd situation, conscripted by none other than the Roman Catholic Church to deal with issues involving King John. Seems the nation's ruler has enlisted the help of a sorcerer who leads a group of shapeshifters intent on ridding the country of John Lackland's northern enemies. These shapeshifters, two hundred in number, would decimate the northern lords, including Sir Jehan and Sir Odinell. Having heard of their past deeds involving issues of a more otherworldly and evil nature, the Church hopes that Molly, Nemain, Jack, and Hob can rid the country of these monstrous beings and the magus who controls them. In exchange for their help, the Church's representative promises their support for Molly and also swears forgiveness of her heathen ways.
So Molly and all are blackmailed into service, so to speak. If they are successful in their task, Molly won't burn at the stake (according to the Pope's man) and if they aren't, they'll most certainly be dead anyway. But how can Molly and team refuse when to do so would greatly impact their friends and supporters in the north?
While Nicholas doesn't delve too deeply into the history of the time, Throne of Darkness is woven around the unease and restlessness of England in 1215 and the signing of the Magna Carta. King John (for those of us who can't keep the monarchies straight) is the very same of Robin Hood fame. He's also the king who lost Normandy to France causing all sorts of upheaval. And he did indeed war with Pope Innocent III but no mention of attempted alliances with Muslim nations.
There's quite a bit of folklore in Throne of Darkness, indeed in the series as a whole. The bouda, magical white cows, and of course the Irish mythology with Molly at it's center. For a book I'd been so greatly anticipating, Throne did not disappoint. I had hoped, though, that we would finally get Molly's story in Ireland. I don't know if that's in future plans at all but I do know that I for one would welcome another installment!
And now for the giveaway: to enter, simply fill out the Rafflecopter below before Monday, April 20. US only and no PO boxes please.
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