I'm stirring up something amazing!
This December 3rd, I will release Lady Macbeth: Daughter of Ravens, Book 1 in The Lady Macbeth Saga. I'm really excited about this novel. It has been, literally, a decade since I first started writing the book. I have to admit I'm a bit nervous. I just realized that it takes a lot of nerve to select one of Shakespeare's most famous characters and try to make her real, likeable, and complex. I hope I've done the job!
Something wicked this way comes . . .
Gruoch is born to rule, but long before she becomes Macbeth’s queen, ancient forces claim her soul.
Marked from birth by the old gods, Gruoch is initiated into the ancient religion of her ancestors and begins learning the mysteries of the Goddess Cerridwen. But not everything is as it seems. Soon the Battle Goddess Morrigu imposes her will, and Gruoch finds herself at the mercy of the Wyrd Sisters.
With King Malcolm plotting, the Wyrd Sisters schooling her in arcane craft, and haunted by dreams of a raven-haired man she’s never met, Gruoch feels her fate is not her own. That is, until she meets a druid named Banquo. Gruoch’s heart is swept away when Banquo awakens something in her more powerful than duty, magic, or destiny: love.
This retelling of Shakespeare’s classic work leads readers through an unforgettable saga of one woman struggling to escape her fate without blood on her hands.
Begin the Lady Mabeth Saga with Lady Macbeth: Daughter of Ravens.
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How about a sneak peek? Below, please find the Prologue for the novel. Keep coming back, I will be release Chapter 1 on my blog very soon! You can also join my mailing list for an early look.
Lady Macbeth: Daughter of Ravens
PrologueI’ve been defamed. The Bard of Avon dubbed me a villainess, an angry, evil murderess. I’m forever painted as an ambitious, blood-hungry queen. They’d have you take me for a mad woman. Slander. Small men tell lies. Poets tell half-truths. Maybe I am a bit mad, but who wouldn’t be after all I have seen? Regardless, I don’t want you to believe such deceits. I don’t want my name to go down in the annuals of times with such epitaphs. My name. What is my name? Have you ever heard it? Did your professor of English ever utter it? My name is quite the mystery. My father gave me one, my aunt dubbed me with another, but in the end, my wyrdness ruled all. Yet I’ve always wondered, who was the Bard really talking about when he titled his Scottish tragedy Macbeth?
I was born in the year 1010 of an Irish princess and an heir to the throne of Scotland. My mother was the reward from a raid into Ireland and a false treaty thereafter. She’s forgotten now, but I want you to know her name. I owe her that. They called her Emer after the Irish legend of Cu Chulainn. She was tall, thin, and had blonde hair that stretched to the floor. My mother died a short nine months after becoming my father’s, Boite’s, bride. My beginning brought her end. They believe she lived sixteen years. Not a long life. And me, I came into the word killing.
As I’ve sought to make sense of my life, my visions in the cauldron showed me my beginning. How did I eventually end up as I did? Andraste would have said it was all destined from the start, but I’m not so sure. My ill-fated birth came at the end of another of my father’s campaigns. As the corpses were paraded past the castle to the burial mound, I emerged squalling from the womb. I was handed to my father who was covered in more blood than me; the sticky red liquid on his chainmail stained the white of my swaddles.
“See here, child,” my father whispered, lifting me to the open window casement. “These men are of your blood. I set the mark of the old gods upon you,” he said, tracing ancient runes upon my brow, my natal blood mixing with the blood of the dead men. “Avenge your kinsman. I call upon the Morrigu, the ancient and dead Goddess of these lands, and ask her to claim you. Let her rise up and take you. Let her whisper battle cries for lullabies. Avenge with the magic of the old gods. Rise up, child, and carry our banner forth. Remember that you are a child of Kenneth MacAlpin’s line and rain vengeance.”
Dark clouds moved across sky occluding the full moon. A raven’s shrill pierced the silence.
The old gods had listened.
“Hear now, sweet babe, Gruoch, hear how the raven calls.”
Thus the first name fell upon me, Gruoch, an awful sounding name uttered from an angry and vengeful man. Behind my father, the midwives crossed themselves. Though he attended the mass of the White Christ, those close to my father knew his heart belonged to the old ones. And me, the farthest from him, felt his beliefs most of all. Perhaps, in this, he did me a single justice.
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