The Saturday Showcase
Last week it was scorchio outside, this week it's super scorchio with no signs of change for at least the next 10 days - Summer is finally HERE!
Today I have a fabulous Historical Fantasy novel for you, along with a Give-Away and Book Excerpt, immediately followed by a Guest Post, so let us begin
Children of Apollo
Adam Alexander Haviaras
Publish date: May 21, 2013 ~ Book Genre: Historical Fantasy
Publisher: Eagles and Dragons Publishing
Children of Apollo (Eagles and Dragons - Book I)
At the peak of Rome’s might a dragon is born among eagles, an heir to a line both blessed and cursed by the Gods for ages.
Lucius Metellus Anguis is a young warrior who is inspired by the deeds of his glorious ancestors and burdened by the knowledge that he must raise his family name from the ashes of the past. Having achieved a measure of success in the Emperor’s Legions in North Africa, Lucius is recalled to Rome where he finds himself surrounded by enemies, cast into the deadly arena of Roman politics. Amid growing fears of treachery, Lucius meets a young Athenian woman who fills his darkening world with new-found hope. Their love grows, as does their belief that the Gods have planned their meeting but when an ancient oracle of Apollo utters a terrifying prophecy regarding his future, Lucius’ world is once more thrown into chaos. Ultimately, he must choose sides in a war that threatens to destroy his family, his faith and all that he has worked for.
Adam Alexander Haviaras is a Toronto-based writer, blogger and historian. He is the author of Children of Apollo, the first book in the historical fantasy series Eagles and Dragons. Adam has studied ancient and medieval history and archaeology at the University of Toronto, Canada and St. Andrews University, Scotland. His second book, Killing the Hydra (Eagles and Dragons – Book II) will be released toward the end of Summer 2013.
Book Buy links:
Website/Blog - http://writingthepastblog.blogspot.ca/
Twitter - @AdamHaviaras
Adam’s Amazon Author page - http://www.amazon.com/Adam-Alexander-Haviaras/e/B009HH8IYC/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1372445985&sr=8-1
Book Trailer – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P4gpxDTeD8w&feature=youtu.be
Wattpad - http://www.wattpad.com/user/AHaviaras (Free short stories)
Historical Novel Society - http://historicalnovelsociety.org/?post_type=&s=adam+alexander+haviaras&submit=Search
Children of Apollo - Chapter III – ‘Bustling Streets and Baths’
Had Lucius known it was market day in Cyrene he might have reconsidered going at all, especially with two hundred men. Not that he doubted Argus and Antanelis’ grasp of command, it was the locals he was worried about and how they would react to such a large force of outside troops, especially after the previous night’s incident. He hoped that the business his men would bring would help the people to forget.
People gazed absently at the sight of the tribune as he made his way through the press of sweaty flesh, his helmet’s crest visible above all else. The sun had risen, it was stifling. This was a far cry from the quiet of the open desert. It was an assault on the senses.
He was pushed and pulled from all sides by men haggling over the price of animals, spices and pots. Old, haggardly women yelled at him as he attempted to make his way through the throng of bodies. Occasionally, merchants would grab Lucius’ arm in an attempt to drag him into their stalls where they wished to sell him bits of pilfered armour and weapons. It did not matter that he was a Roman officer or that his weapons were far superior to any the merchants had ever seen. On market day, any passer-by was fair game. Why else would anyone be there?
The variety of people amazed Lucius. There were merchants, both rich and poor, peasants performing menial tasks for anyone who would pay them. Rich ladies paraded themselves in perfumed litters carried by four to eight slaves while well-to-do citizens pushed into the fray with their own slaves in tow, shopping for household items. In the midst of the chaos, local auxiliary troops attempted to maintain some semblance of order as they rubbed along with everyone else. Nubians, Egyptians, Greeks, Massilians, Parthians and countless other peoples were all mixed together in an orgy of buying and selling.
Lucius glanced back in the direction from which he had come, could see the centurion’s crests of Antanelis and Argus, caught in the middle of the animal market as a herd of camels swarmed about them. Argus’ voice raged above the din of murmuring dromedaries. He smiled to himself at the thought of his friends’ progress toward the baths, hindered by both beast and merchant. They would need to bathe after that. Finally, Lucius neared the forum at the centre of town. It was packed to capacity. Local politicians waved their arms about in dramatic arcs, street performers enacted bits of classic comedies, and fortune tellers read what the Fates had in store in scattered bits of bone for those who wanted a little guidance. On the right, Lucius spotted snake charmers playing their magical flutes, their reptilian audience swaying to the lulling music like cradled babes to their mothers’ nightly hymns.
Lucius moved along, noticed the slave market to his left. There was a large wooden platform on which the slave trader paraded his goods so that buyers could make their choice. Lucius stood for a moment and watched. To one side of the dais the slaves were bunched together awaiting their turn: children, men and women. Lucius felt his heart seize up at the sight of boys and girls, no more than ten years old, who would be sold as labourers, house slaves or other unthinkable uses.
There were also many stunning women to be auctioned off. No doubt they would fetch the highest prices from rich matrons who needed body servants or rich men who wished to impress their friends by displaying an array of concubines about their homes. One girl of about twenty-two was brought up next. She was stunning in every respect with golden hair, green eyes and a figure to render Venus jealous; she wore only the slightest of coverings, intended to show her off. No doubt she was taken from her home somewhere in the northern provinces, perhaps Germania or Britannia.
“And now!” The auctioneer’s voice rose above the bubbling crowd. “Who could resist this young beauty?” He yanked the girl closer. She made a weak attempt to pull away, his hand closed tightly about her wrist. “Any takers for this virgin barbarian?” The man’s gaze concentrated upon the row of rich merchants in front. The virginity of the girl in question was unlikely, the pained, tired look in her eyes telling otherwise. She tried to hide behind her long hair.
Lucius, who could see above the heads of the crowd, felt a pang of dread for the young woman when an old, rich-looking Egyptian tossed a heavy pouch of aurea at the trader’s feet. The girl’s eyes filled with tears as she was handed over to the lecher, half-naked and afraid. Then, at that moment, as if looking into the crowd for help, she held Lucius’ eyes and shook her head pleadingly.
The torment of seeing this perfect being dragged away on the end of a rope held by that pig was almost too much. Lucius hated feeling so helpless and angry for there was nothing he could do. He tore himself from the poor creature’s gaze, turned abruptly and shoved his way through the crowd toward the other side of the forum and the offices of the Prefect. The girl shut her eyes and broke down, the reality of her situation all too harsh and terrifying.
Readers who sign-up for e-mail updates at Writing the Past
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before July 21, 2013
will automatically be entered in a contest to win one of three paperback copies of the book.
AND the first place winner will also receive a wooden practice gladius donated by Reliks.com.
The draw will take place at the end of July and the winners announced by video posted on Writing the Past and elsewhere.
On to the Guest Post!