At last, he had his revenge.
After a while he ceased to notice who he killed. He merely struck out with the rage he'd carried for years. He was vaguely aware some of them weren't even armed. Through the fog of his battle frenzy, he even heard some of them beg for mercy, but he gave them none. He slashed and stabbed. The bodies piled up around him, and the ground became slick with the blood of the fallen. As he pulled his sword free from the body of his latest victim, he heard someone calling his name. He whirled, thrusting his sword toward the sound. Too late to stop the momentum, he saw the auburn hair of the one who had spoken. He watched in horror as his sword plunged through Milady's mouth and emerged from the back of her head. Her eyes looked into his, startled, and then she collapsed on top of another woman. As Robrek flung the sword away and dropped beside Milady's twitching body, he realized she'd fallen on top of Cara. Robrek didn't even remember killing her. Beside Cara lay Tegan, the young boy from the horse fair.
He grabbed Milady and held her to his chest, "No!" he sobbed. "I'd never do this to you! I could never hurt you! I love you!"
The Goddess's Choice is based on a Norwegian legend I've never heard of, but you can clearly see the classic elements of old world legends in the telling. It is bloody and gruesome at times (think Grimm's Fairy Tales gruesome), there is magic and mystery, and the three magical horses just scream myths and legends to me.
Samantha is a strong heroine in the story, unusual for the old world. Even in the story, it is clear that many are not happy with having a woman in such a position of power). I like her a lot and it pains me to see what she has to go through in the story to come out on top, the people she has to lose.
Robrek, the hero of the story, frustrated me for most of the story, even while I was rooting for him to escape the nightmare his reality is and get the girl. He fights his destiny for much of the story (thus my frustration) and has difficulty letting go of the past so he can have a future. I hated the people that abused him just as much as he did and it pained me to watch as those that should have nurtured and protected him, should have been his friends, turned on him.
All in all, I really enjoyed this book and if you like romances or books with magic and knights, you'll probably like this story.
I live in Auburn, Alabama, with my husband, son, and four cats. I've been told that having four cats officially makes you a cat lady, so I guess I am one. I teach writing and literature at Auburn University.
My first novel The Goddess's Choice was released in April 2012 from Reliquary Press. I am hard at work on the sequel, tentatively titled The Soul Stone. My short fiction has been published in Bards & Sages, The World of Myth, and Short-story.me.
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