What would you do if you suddenly became both infinitely psychic and unable to tell even the smallest of lies? And if, in your bewildering new condition, you were also exiled from your homeland, destitute, and unhappily in love with a darkly seductive Elf who'd forced you to undertake an impossible quest? Such is the Fate of Tomas the Rhymer, the reluctant poet-hero of this extensively researched historical fantasy novel, wherein the Celtic and Norse realms of Elves, gods and spirits converge with Viking Age Europe's real events and shifting world-views--and evoke some haunting parallels with our own era's rapid changes.
Steven Forrest on THE RHYMER AND THE RAVENS:
"First off, I gobble up any book that sends me hurtling out of my familiar world. That's especially true when it carries me to a land where my own ancestors walked, a place I recognize at some dim cellular level. Set at the edges of ninth-century western Europe, The Rhymer and the Ravens achieves all that splendidly. It is, elementally, an excellent yarn, written for grown-ups willing to stretch themselves further. But I love the book, and The Elves' Prophecy and The Bridge, which follow it, for another set of reasons. I'm an astrologer, which means I believe in a living, meaningful universe, a universe whose basic fabric is symbolism. I've put my life into that work and had some success with it. But it's been an uphill climb, mostly because the collective mythology of the present world is so one-dimensional and literal. We've left so little breathing room for magic.
We won't re-enchant our universe with theories. We'll do it as our foremothers and forefathers did, with stories. The Rhymer and the Ravens won't change the world, but it's a step in the right direction. The protagonist, Tomas the Rhymer, starts out as many of us do, with all the basic ingredients of higher consciousness, but with no tradition, support or training. By the end of the novel, he's a Mage. And on that path we've watched where he's placed (and misplaced) his feet. Jodie combines her own formidable intuitions about this process with a truly scholarly knowledge of the Norse and Celtic mysteries, all of which blend smoothly into the tale. In reading it, one receives a kind of esoteric initiation almost without knowing it.
The second and third books of the trilogy carries a now-mature Tomas far more deeply into that world. It feels a bit like reading about Castaneda's Don Juan, except that now Don Juan is not a shaman in a culture I don't understand very well. He's my father's father. For a "fantasy" that feels more real than today's headlines and for metaphysical writing that carries the quiet authority of lost Bards and Seers, The Rhymer and the Ravens is an unparalleled experience."
Read the critical acclaim for The Rhymer and the Ravens.