Blackbeard’s Daughter – Book Review


Dear swashbucklers,

Recently I had the opportunity to read an interesting story from author, Diana Strenka. Her  version of how Blackbeard the pirate came to be. The story is told by his daughter, Margaret Teach. Edward Teach is her Father, Blackbeard.

Edward is the son of a noble England family. Wealthy owners of a shipping company. From a young age, Edward was groomed to carry on the family business. A legacy he hated and had no intension to fulfill. He longed to sail the open seas. Free of the scheduled life that chained him. They lived in a mansion on the English coast. He calls it a dungeon of doom.

Blackbeard's DaughterOne day he told his father, “I wish I could be a sailor.”

“Get that foolishness out of your head.” His Father hired Elid to watch, care, and educate him. Elid was well traveled. He educates Edward in Latin, which he hated. He did like the lavish, evening parties at the Teach mansion. Edward is five. He was forbidden to attend the parties by Father until his tenth birthday.

Once Edward defied his Father and snuck down and attended a party. Of course he was caught. Resulting in a severe whipping by Father on his back. Elid received a severe paddling. That night changed relationships. Elid and Edward harbored deep grudges against Father. Edward dreamed of his escape to the open seas.

After that night Elid has continual nightmares. During one, he accidently injures Edward, dislocating his arm. His Father kills Elid. Stabs him to death. Later, Edward steals the knife, still covered in Elid’s blood.

Edward’s new educators are two young attorneys. He turns ten. That night he attends the party and other festivities for the first time.

Two years later, Edward has been mated with Eleanor Stanley. His parent’s decision. She’s beautiful, ocean blue eyes, long curly blond hair. They are to be married on Edward’s seventeenth birthday, in five years.

Grandfather has a mistress, Elizabeth. He doesn’t love his wife. That’s why he’s always gone. While on route to Elizabeth’s home, Again,  Grandfather is murdered by Samuel, one of Elid’s relatives. He stabbed him in the chest. He never believed the story of Elid mysteriously sailing back to his hometown in France. Samuel was later hanged for the crime.

Grandfather’s will left nearly the entire fortune to Edward. Small pensions to Grandmother, Elizabeth and her future daughter.

On his 17th birthday, Edward and Eleanor are married. A splendid affair. He sold the shipping company. Wanting no part of the family business. Grandmother died several months later.

A year later, Margaret Teach is born.  The year, 1698. Soon Edward purchases a vessel, “The Midnight Rose.” He spends more and more time at sea.

Edward wants to sail for the colonies. Across the ocean to the Province of Carolina. Eleanor doesn’t want to go. She wants Margaret to receive a proper education. He gives up his dream for years.

Then he goes away to sea for years. When he returns, she agrees to sail to America. The year, 1707. They sold their mansion. A few servants accompany them on their journey.             They loaded their belongings on the ship. “Goodbye England! Goodbye forever!” They sailed away. The ship has rats, they quickly discover.

On the ship, Margaret meets Jack. He’s going to New York to be an actor. His parents are dead. His aunt, Emma Kingston, lives in New York. He’s ten. He and Margaret touched a rat. They both became sick from the fever and rash. Jack dies. The sailors buried him at sea. Margaret was horrified and heartbroken.  She recovered from the fever.

“Land, ho!” They arrive in America.  Edward takes his family to see Lady Bethany Teach, his aunt. The next day, she holds a grand ball to introduce her family to the neighbors. She begins building a plantation for them seven miles west of there. They live with her for months while the construction goes on.

On a cool day in October, their home is ready. They would never see Aunt Bethany again, as they moved. Their new home; white picked fencing, iron gate, brick sidewalk, blue house, wrap-around porch, crimson carpets, bedrooms upstairs. A true paradise.

Queen Anne’s War has begun in the Province of Carolina. A battle over land. The Indians are attacking. Aunt Bethany’s home was ransacked. She fled to England.

Edward and Eleanor are expecting their second child. Soon, the war comes to their home. The Indians attack. Eleanor and Margaret are captured while Edward is wounded. He’s somewhere else. They escape the Indians and are captured by the Spanish. She has a miscarriage, lost the baby. Then released back into the forest by the Spanish soldiers.

Later, Indians took them in. During a Spanish soldier attack, Eleanor is killed. Margaret is the only survivor. The soldiers prepare to execute Margaret as a traitor. Edward arrives. Kills them all, saves his daughter. He picks up Eleanor’s dead body. “We’re leaving.” They walk home.

Later at home, they buried her on their property. The home was ransacked by Indians. Esther was hiding in the cellar. Edward, Margaret, and Esther decided to move south. They walked away. Selling would take too long. They move to a town called Bath, North Carolina. Margaret is eleven.

On route to Bath, in a tavern, Esther is raped. She’s 25. Soon they reach their destination, Bath. Edward finds a home, fancy and spacious. Soon, they purchase slaves at an auction. Also farm animals. He hires a governess, Mistress Ashley to educate Margaret. She learns the normal things including French and nursing.

After purchasing a boat, Edward leaves Margaret in charge and goes back to sea. Esther is pregnant. Edward is the father.  When he returns from sea, Margaret insists they marry.

Edward goes back to sea for many months. He returns with a beard. He’s there for the birth.

She has a boy. Name’s him Thomas. He has a lung disorder. Fights for his life. The condition improves with time.

Esther tells Edward to leave. She’s had enough of his leaving for long periods of time to go off to sea. He leaves. Goes back to sea.

A year later. Edward returns from sea. He has a thick beard. He tells Margaret he’s a pirate.

Two years later, Esther dies from consumption. She’s buried on their property. Not allowed in a cemetery. 1716.

Edward is at sea again. He leaves letters and gold coins in a box at the seashore under a mossy stone for Margaret. They communicate this way for a long time. “Tell everyone I have died. Make up an excuse.” She tells everyone he drowned at sea. They have a funeral.

In another letter, months later, Edward joined Captain Hornigold’s crew. He’s a pirate. A life-long dream fulfilled!  Sailing the Bahama coastline. Fighting the British.  He has a long, dark, beard.

Margaret wants her and Thomas to join him at sea. She fears for his life.

Months later, Edward writes back. He’s a ship captain now.  At first he says no, no life for a young lady and boy. But later reconsiders. He’ll be back the first of November to pick them up. They will be pirates on his sloop.

Daniel, her steady, proposes to Margaret as she prepares to sail. She says, “Yes.” But wait until they sail. She wants her dad’s blessing.

In November, Edward’s beard is long and black. Bradded at the bottom. Looks like the devil himself. Blackbeard knows Daniel. He’s married. She breaks off the engagement. Daniel yells, “Blackbeard is hear!”  Blackbeard shoots him in the stomach. The ship sails.

Margaret and Thomas settle into life as pirates. Her Dad gives her shooting and sword lessons.

Robert Fox is a trained doctor onboard the ship. He works with Margaret. They become very close.

There are battles at sea. Blackbeard relegated a new ship. “Queen Anne’s Revenge.” Larger and grander. More crew.

Before long, Robert proposes. They are married in a week. Blackbeard performs the simple ceremony. Miss Margaret Fox. After months, she’s pregnant.

Months later, the ship is attacked by English soldiers. Margaret is injured. Loses her baby. She named him Jonathan. Robert is captured. She believes he’s dead. She vows to unleash all hell on the men who killed her family.

Blackbeard attacks an English Base. Margaret fights like a cruel, murderous, woman. She loved killing men. A trophy rage.

Months later, they face an English fleet of ships. Blackbeard is the target. He is killed. Beheaded by sword.

Margaret and Thomas are captured. The English will sell off Blackbeard’s property in Bath, North Carolina. The slaves as well. The English release her.

Later, on the shore, next to the mossy stone, she reads a letter that Edward had given her to read in case he died. He included a treasure map. He has amassed a treasure for her. Blackbeard’s treasure. The treasure was buried there, under the stone.

At nightfall, they began to dig. Robert shows up and helps them dig. He also received a letter from Blackbeard. They plan to have another child in time. They unearth a rusty chest. It was filled with personal artifacts, jewels, gold and silver coins. A million pounds of gold coins alone.

Margaret bought back her family that the English sold into slavery, and moved to New York.

The End.

I found Blackbeard’s Daughter to be an interesting story.  In my opinion, author Diana Strenka did a good writing the book.

I found Edward Teach, Blackbeard, to be a very difficult person to like. I also would have liked it better if Margaret Teach had of followed in her father’s footsteps—continued as a pirate after her Father’s death. To me that would have followed the story line better than moving to New York. But that’s just me.

Overall I enjoyed the book. I read Blackbeard’s Daughter  using my Kindle Unlimited subscription.

My rating: 5 stars

May good fortune guide your path.

J.A. Ireland

The Einstein Prophecy – Book Review


Dear suspense thriller fans,

Recently I read a good book set during Hitler’s time and the making of the atomic bomb. The Einstein Prophecy by author, Robert Masello. Here’s my review of this cult thriller.

The book begins west of Strasbourg, Alsace- Lorraine. August 4, 1944. A twelve year old, blond haired boy, climbed over ruins. His clothing tattered. Boys are searching through the rubble for collectables.

The Einstein ProphecyPrivate Teddy Toussaint was watching the boys. Lieutenant Lucas Athan was there as well.

The boys found foil dropped by German planes to confound Allied radio transmissions.

Athan and Toussaint are part of the clandestine advance guard. The Cultural Recovery Commission. In private life, CRC’s were museum curators, art dealers, and professors, like Lucas.

Germans were pilfering valuable artifacts from European countries without cease.

A fierce battle over a little town called Saint-Lô, in Northwestern France has 11,000 dead.

Lucas and Private Toussaint were traveling to a place far beyond the front. Alsace-Lorraine. They’re looking for the iron mines. A bomb shelter. At the shelter, Lucas wants the art.

“The art is for the Fṻhrer!” Emil said strongly.

The mayor leads Lucas and Toussaint into the bomb shelter past dozens of frightened people. Their looking for a stone box. Five or six feet long and a few feet high. Lucas finds paints. A lot of artwork. Statues, urns, clay, amphorae, paintings.

He finds crates marked for the Eagles Nest, Hitler’s private mountain retreat. Suddenly there’s an explosion. Land mine.

Later, Lieutenant Lucas Athan is a college professor again. PhD. Princeton University. Sept. 2, 1944. He spent two weeks in the hospital following the explosion and surgery. Lost an eye. Wears an eye patch. He knows Albert Einstein.

The USS Seward, a Red Cross ship was full of wounded American soldiers in the North Atlantic. Protected by the Geneva Convention and escorted by two navy destroyers. The seas are teeming with U-boats, the wolf pack.

Dr. Simone Rashid PhD, educated at Oxford is on board with her father. They share a cabin. She’s 27. Both Arabic. Her mother died when she was ten.

Dr. Abdul Rashid PhD is Chairman of National Affairs Dept. at the University of Cairo. Also educated at Oxford.

Their ship was hit by a torpedo. Simone finds a crate in the cargo hull marked “Priority A-1 Importance.”

Newspaper Headlines. “Navy Convoy Torpedoed in North Atlantic.”

“USS Van Buren Sunk by U-boat.”

“USS Seward the Red Cross Ship safely at the Dock.”

Einstein and Kurt Gödel are friends. A younger mathematician by thirty years. Gödel is married to a former Viennese cabaret dancer six years older than him. She likes gardening.

Robert Oppenheimer, the head of the top-secret project to develop an atomic bomb was there.

Simone and her father are at Princeton, in New Jersey. All the way from Cairo, Egypt.

Lucas is working, teaching a class at Princeton. Colonel Macmillan talks to him about the sarcophagus. The one he and Private Teddy Toussaint found in the iron mine outside Strasbourg.

The sarcophagus is at Princeton. Macmillan and President Dodds want Lucas to learn why Hitler wants it so badly. It was to be taken to Hitler’s private home. The Eagles Nest.

Lucas thinks it’s a two thousand year old casket. He will examine it tomorrow at Princeton.

Oppenheimer is trying to build the atomic bomb. He needs Einstein’s help to work on the equations. Quantum theory.

Wally is cleaning the conservation wing. Orders from President Dodd’s office. In the center of the room, a long box, coffin like, peak roof. Made of white stone. Images carved on the lid and sides.

There are bats in the conservation wing, lots of them. Wally is attacked. Bitten. Severely injured.

Professor Willard Libby worked at Princeton under a Geggenheim Grant. Recruited by Columbia for a top secret project. Delaney would carry the torch.

Delaney and Lucas are in the conservation room with the great white chest-calcita alabaster. Gabled roof with elaborate carvings worn away with time. It’s cold! Egyptian hieroglyphs. The sarcophagus of a King?

Simone Rashid talks to Lucas at the local pub. She tells him the sarcophagus belongs to the Egyptian people. She’s staying at the Nassau Inn. “If you open that sarcophagus without me, you will live to regret it.”

It’s the tomb of Saint Anthony of Egypt, the reputed father of Christian monasticism, and battler of the demonic hordes sent to torture him and test his faith.

Simone and her father discovered it in a cave in Egypt, in the desert along with countless Urns.

Lucas isn’t making any progress in identifying who is in the sarcophagus at Princeton.

Simone Rashid received a visiting appointment to the Middle Eastern Studies Department at Princeton, per Colonel Macmillan.

Lucas knows from his hydrochloric acid test, the ossuary is from Egypt and Syria. “Sahara el Beyda” or “White Desert” 1800 to 2000 years old.

He plans to open it tonight after the museum closes at 8:00pm. Andy Brandt is standing in the hall listening. He touched the coffin and ran away screaming! It’s freezing!

Simone was joining Geophysics Professor Delaney and Athan in the conservation wing for the great unveiling. But not her dad. Her dad is understandably upset. They had ventured into the White Desert together, descended into the cave, found the sarcophagus. Sailed it across the Atlantic. Now he is excluded from the opening.

Lucas, Delaney, and Simone are in the conservation wing with the sarcophagus. Lucas is filming the opening. Colonel Macmillan’s idea to film the event. A Bell & Howell Eyemo assembly is used to film.

They cut through the rusty chains. Open the lid. “Oh my God!” A jumble of bones. An iron crucifix. Only one was human, the other was, who knows? An ape? Deformed child? Hideously disfigured.

The camera starts acting up. A wind starts spinning around the room. Spinning faster. Lights flickering. They set something free. Something as old as time. Utterly bad.

Andy Brandt has a key to the conservation room. He secretly copied it off Delaney’s ring. He snunk into the room to see the white stone chest and felt sick every since. He’s a German spy. Now he’s sick. The chills. The flu.

Simone tells Lucas the ossuary contains the bones of Saint Anthony, they believe. Found in the White Desert of the Sahara.

Wally Gregg is dying from Saint Anthony’s fire. The Saint who wrestled with demons. The box contained an evil spirit that Anthony captured.

There’s an assignation attempt on Einstein’s life at a football game. Lucas rescued him and is injured. Wally Greg was the attacker. But Wally died from infection after bat bites. The morgue Doc, Farrell pronounced him dead. Afterward, according to Farrell, Wally Gregg came back to life. Knocked Farrell out with a metal block.

Lucas sent the film he made when they opened the stone casket to the army by courier.

Delaney ran three isotate tests. The human remains date from about fifteen or sixteen hundred years old.

The creature buried with the human remains was 10’s of 1000’s of years older. But it died at the same time, Delaney reports to Lucas. They drive to the army base to pick up a package. Colonel Macmillan’s orders. It’s a copy of the film. The original was sent to Washington.

Saint Anthony’s fire is a plague, a disease of the skin.

A passage is read from Ambrose in the fourth century. Warning monks about demons. How they lie. Change their shapes and forms, by Simone’s father. He believes the demon story. No one else does.

Lucas looks like a pirate with his black eye patch. He watches the film again. The projector starts burning. Parts of the film are blurred out by the military. Suddenly there’s mice everywhere.

Simone’s father died suddenly. He slipped getting out of the tub, cracked his head, and drowned. She felt completely lost. He was cremated. Simone dumps the ashes in Lake Carnegie.

Lucas sees Andy Brandt at the museum acting like an animal.

Police Chief Farrell and Lucas are at Andy Brandt’s apartment. There are paintings of Saint Anthony in the apartment.

Taylor is Einstein’s secret bodyguard.

Simone is at the main library. She thinks something is there. She’s terrified!

Einstein finds a dead body. The face was dehydrated, sucked dry. Lips were tight to the gums and showing. Eyes were open and empty. Staring into infinity. He could be 20 or 200. Smelled like a swamp.

Lucas has the ossuary back. The police returned it to him. Carved on the lid is the ancient sign, a diamond tilted to one side, with a diagonal line crossed over it—drawn in pencil, underlined three times. Represents the forces of containment! A seal! The seal was broken when the coffin was opened.

Legion is the demon that Simon’s father was studying. That killed him.

Brandt’s corpse was sucked dry like a piece of dried fruit.

Simone wants to hunt down the demon that killed her father and kill it. She needs Lucas’ help. “Ok,” Lucas says. The demon becomes a swarm of flies and attacks Lucas and Simone.

The demon takes the form of a panther and kills Taylor, Einstein’s friend.

Lucas and Macmillan are moving the sarcophagus. Simone is angry. The diamond sign is gone. The demon vandalized the ossuary to make sure it could never be used to imprison the demon again.

Lucas and Simone are in Delaney’s office. The office was destroyed. Delaney is badly injured.

Einstein is paddling his boat in the lake. A man appears in his boat. A hulking brute with a neurological disease looking appearance. “Call me Beelzebub.” Lord of the Flies. He had emerged from under the canvas. Smelled like a corpse. A storm began to blow in.

Lucas and Delaney battle the creature as it attacks Einstein in his boat. They use the ancient iron staff with the crooked handle. Delaney brought it from the museum.

The creature possessed Delaney. Lucas had to kill it now!

Lucas kills the creature the same way Saint Anthony killed demons. By raising the staff toward Heaven. A massive charge of blue flash, jagged lightning bolt through the iron handle like the finger of God into the creature. Scorching it. The creature quickly dies. Convulsing. Smoldering. Falls dead into the lake. Looks charred and lifeless. Floats, smoking away.

Lucas is alive. He saves Einstein.

Lucas and Simone marry. Einstein gives Simone away.

President Truman announces the dropping of the atomic bomb over the radio. Harnessing the basic power of the universe. Nagasaki. Hiroshima. The war is over! NYC is in celebration like Mardi Gras. Sailors are everywhere. “VJ!VJ!VJ! Victory over Japan.” The Japanese Government in Tokyo has accepted the Allied Surrender Terms. NYC is a party town.

April 18, 1955. Albert Einstein suffered a ruptured aneurysm abdominal aorta and died. He was 76. He was cremated after his brain was removed for study. His ashes were scattered at Princeton. The Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton.

His final work, Russel-Einstein Manifesto Published on July 9, 1955 in London. A decoration against thermonuclear war.

A dire prophecy of what might occur if people of all nations did not find some way to live together in peace. Otherwise there lies before you the risk of universal death.

The End.

The Einstein Prophecy was an enjoyable book to read. It was a cross between The Mummy and Raiders of the Lost Ark. Many of the characters reminded me of the main characters in those two movies as well. Especially Lucas Athan. He reminded me strongly of Dr. Henry Jones PhD, Jr. (Indiana) with a black eye patch.

The Einstein Prophecy was a number one best seller in both the action adventure and scifi sections on Kindle at one time. I read it with my Kindle Unlimited subscription.

I hope you enjoyed my review.

My rating: 4.5 stars

Until we talk again.

May good fortune guide your path,

J.A. Ireland

The Haunting of Blackwood House – Book Review


Dear friends,

There’s nothing like a scary story about an old house, deep in the woods, that appears to be infested by ghosts. Author, Darcy Coates has written a very entertaining novel that is a page- turner.

The Haunting of Blackwood HouseMy review begins…Mara, due to her phony, spiritual medium parents, does not believe in ghosts and believes even less in spiritualists who claim to speak to the dead and remove spirits from homes.

She’s at a difficult time in her life. Having lost her job, the lease on her tiny one room apartment is ending and up for renewal or evacuate in 30 days. She decides it’s time for a big change in her life. Mara contacts a realtor, breathless Jenny.

After several disappointing housing prospects, out of desperation, Jenny tells her about Blackwood House. Blackwood is an old house. Built in the 1800’s. Enormous. Deep in the woods. Well under her price range.

“What’s wrong with it?” Mara asks suspiciously.

“It has a history.”

After a very brief explanation, Mara stops her. “I want to see the house.” Not believing a word.

A short time later, they’re at the house. Mara and her boyfriend Neil look the large, badly rundown home over. Even though she understands the residents included a serial killer also several murders were committed in the home by the killer. Somehow she’s drawn to it. She makes a bold decision. “I’ll take the house!”

One month later, Mara’s the proud owner of Blackwood House. She moves in. She has no job, no car. The house has no electricity. Many holes in the walls and roof. Rusty water. Bug, mice, and rat infested.

Mara’s first night she hears noises. Someone walking in the attack. Doors slamming. Chairs moving. Children crying. Even a body hanging by his neck from the banister. This continues night after night.

Neil thinks the house is haunted. The stories are true. He wants her to leave. After much fighting, he hires two spiritual mediums, Erica and Damian to rid the house of spirits. Much to Mara’s anger. She throws them all out and breaks it off with Neil in a rage. Mara refuses to believe in ghosts, spirits, or mediums.

Later, as the spirits are closing in on Mara, for the kill, Erica, Damian, and later Neil return and save her life. They are now welcomed. They prepare to rid the house of ghosts. Believing that Robert Kant, the serial killer is the dominant spirit. Rid him and the rest will leave. Or, that’s there idea.

The plan fails. Because…Victor Barlow, Mara’s great, great, grandfather who was a very powerful spirit medium built Blackwood House. He’s the dominate spirit.

Victor possess Neil. He is attacked inside by Neil and outside by his gr, gr, granddaughter Mara, who inherited his powers. Victor is destroyed. The spirits quickly retreated from Blackwood.

Blackwood remains a hotspot for supernatural activity. That’s what attracted Victor Barlow to the property in the beginning. Why he built the home there on the grounds.

Later, Erica and Damian rent rooms from Mara and work in the attic.

Neil and Pam, his mum, move in as well. Pam becomes the unofficial cook and does well with the country life.

Mara becomes a strong spirit medium in Erica and Damian’s company and loves her new career.

The story ends as Mara calls her mum, Elaine, and invites her parents over for dinner sometime. Their relationship has been estranged for many years due to Mara thinking her parents are frauds. Maybe not?

If you like haunting novels, Blackwood House is very good. It’s available free on Kindle Unlimited.

My rating: 4.5 stars

May good fortune guide your path.

J.A. Ireland

The Song of Kings – Book Review


Dear medieval times readers,

Recently I was contacted by author Richard Chance. He invited me to read and review his novel, The Song of Kings. Since he put a lot of work into the offer, I agreed to do so. I read his entire novel. Here’s my review of the medieval times tale.

The story begins as a bearded, old man is in a cell. He’s being tortured. His captors want to know who he is. Which he does not remember. Instead, he tells them a story…

The Song of KingsThe Crystal Palace was ten centuries old and still growing. It’s magical. Samakand, the capital city of Regis lay in the distance. The seat of the galactic empire. On a mountain of ice, a hidden world lay beneath the surface. The Emperor Ptolemy Sy’r Darya rules Regis.

Phalon, is the physician that is attending to the royal mother, Queen Eugenia. She is having twins. Phalon makes certain one baby dies. He plans to kill the Queen as well. The living child is named. “Little Leonidas.” The first born. The second child is allowed to die. Never encouraged to begin breathing. Therefore still born.

Dr. Langstrum, the court physician examines the dead infant. Pronounces it dead . Never suspects foul play by Phalon.

Phalon’s plan is to kill the Queen next. Her marriage was political to settle long standing disputes. He plans to control the only heir to the throne. He hung a ruby red, crystal around Little Leonidas’ neck. He said the ancient words, “vallo of regnum.” The necklace was activated.

The child is King Ptolemy’s son. Prince Leonidas Ptolemy Sy’r Darya.

Alexander Phalon is a wizard. He can read minds.

Noblemen gathered to celebrate the birth of the prince.

A clone is buried alongside Queen Eugenia. The royal child lives. Gwendolyn kidnaps the child along with her partner Tichtius, the fisherman. Gwendolyn and Tichtius met at The Wheel. Also where they meet the Stranger. Dressed in black. Blue eyes. He explains to them about a democracy form of gov’t. Afterward, Gwendolyn and Tichtius flee in a boat with the infant king. Soon, Tichtius kidnaps the baby from Gwen.

The Scholar, and old man, Nur’ed’ Din, lives on the River Ashoka. Soldiers are invading his home. Written on his cellar wall. “Sapiens Qui Prospicit” He is wise that looks ahead. He is killed by the soldiers. Shot in the head. The house is searched without success.

Leonidas has a new tutor. “Theolon.” He was the kings tutor. Now he will tutor the king’s son. Teaching him what he needs to know to rule.

“Was is coming to this kingdom!” King Ptolemy declares. “Seven years ago today the aliens attacked. The Rifters!” Causalities were catastrophic. They look like The Rifters.

King Ptolemy wants to attack The Rifters in their home-world. Through the nebula. He wants to capture and occupy the Rift Nebula. They need to amass a fleet of ships.

The supply station on the edge of the Monoceros system for the Regis fleet on route to the Great Rift Nebula is almost abandoned. One ship guards the facility. Using a stolen transport ship, they attack the supply station.

Leonidas’ instructor is Professor Theolon Alexander Kâldân. He teaches him history.

His father, King Ptolemy teaches him The Song of Kings. How to fight with a sword.

Greylean tells Ja’din a story. The Iliad. The story of gods and men, the warriors of two great warring nations.

An old man, Theolon, shows Leonidas a secret tunnel. It leads to outside the Great Palace. “I’m finally outside!” Leonidas declares. They go into an alley, into the village. Leonidas is hooded for his safety.

Lillian is dying. Greylean is her husband. Ja’din is their son.

King Ptolemy has visions.

Leonidas turns eight. He has a birthday party. Theolon reads the story; The Lion and The Unicorn; The Fairy Tale.

King Ptolemy is sick. He’s paralyzed. He turns to Theolon for help. The king opens a chest. Inside they find the Crystal Shard of Salâhad-Dîn. It’s black. A magic crystal. Alive. Like the palace. More objects in the chest. Dagger of Vajrakîlaya—capable of space travel.

Theolon, the wizard, takes kingship away from Ptolemy. He causes a hideous creature to appear. Like a creature in a nightmare. It’s a hologram.

Calanus is another wizard in the book.

Leonidas and Ja’din escape the castle through the same tunnel on route to the village. Inside the cavern, the encounter a giant, metallic, motion sensitive spider. After visiting the village, they return to the castle where they’re safe.

The End.

The Song of Kings by author Richard Chance is a charming story set during medieval times. His story incorporates daggers, kings, knights, a magical castle, magic spells, wizards, etc… Many of the features one might expect to find in a novel of that genre are present.

Also mentioned very briefly are aliens, cloning, deep space travel, and past inner-galactic war—without needed details connecting them to the story. R J Chance indicates this is the first novel in a series. Perhaps we will read more about how these and other open plot lines connect to the main story line in further books. It should make for interesting reading.

I read The Song of Kings by author R J Chance due to a special invitation via facebook. I downloaded it through my Kindle Unlimited subscription.

My rating: 3.5 stars

Until we talk again.

May good fortune guide your path.

J.A. Ireland