I have just finished reading Apollo’s Raven, and I absolutely loved it, every single, beautifully placed word! I didn’t want the book to end, so I am hanging out for Book Two. When I first began reading Apollo’s Raven, I had no idea of what to expect, not knowing very much about ancient Britannia, or the power of Druid magic. Reading this wonderful book, was akin to embarking on an epic journey of love, betrayal, mysticism, and Druid’s dark magic, all of which surrounds Catrin, the Celtic warrior princess who was determined to fight for her family’s Cantiaci kingdom, no matter what.
As Catrin is struggling to interpret her mystifying connection with a particular raven, which seems to be following her everywhere, she meets the captivating Roman, Marcellus, son of a high ranking Roman official who has landed in Britannia with a cohort of reconnaissance soldiers ahead of an invasion-ready legion. As a result, distrust is fomenting between two Celtic kingdoms and among members of their royal families. Torn between loyalty to her father, King Amren, and her forbidden love for Marcellus, she finds her inherited gift/curse of ancient Druid magic sometimes a hindrance, often life-saving.
Britannia is being battered not only by warring tribes and invaders, but by warring families! The burgeoning influence of patriarchal Rome’s empire is beginning to threaten some and create thoughts of treachery in others, while elements of dark magic and mystery surround a trusted druid, who perhaps shouldn’t be trusted at all. Then there are historic prophesies and curses returning to haunt Catrin and her family, including the terrifying shape-shifting ability of her murderous half-brother. Catrin’s father places his utmost trust in the Druid, Agrona, but is she who she once was?
The political and romantic turmoil requires the teenage Catrin to use all of her fierce physical prowess and intelligence to quell the uprising of violence and intrigue between her father’s kingdom and that of a rival king’s. The visible presence of Roman soldiers in the surrounding countryside is inflaming the rivalry between the two kingdoms and their respective royal families. Not only that, both Marcellus and Catrin are seemingly cursed by the misdeeds of their respective ancestors.
An unpredictable, spell-binding tale, made so much richer by the historical integrity of the research carried out by the author, Linnea Tanner.
-Anne Frandi-Coory 19 August 2017