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Writing book reviews takes up a lot of space on this blog. I am wondering if it is time to set that aside and write other things. I think it’s time to turn my attention to other writing. The flow of new reading material is quite fun, always a happy mail day when the book package came. However, I feel that this season is over, at least for now. So here are my last two reviews for Nuts About Books.

A Light on the Hill by Connilyn Cossette

Set just a few decades past the exodus from Egypt, Israel is still in the birth pangs of claiming the promised land. Cities of refuge have been established but haven’t seen much use of yet. The laws are still new to the people and the smell of slavery barely washed out.

Thirteen-year-old Moriyah suffered branding by an idolatrous priest shortly before rescue out of what could have been a horrific life of enforced prostitution. As an adult, due to her own shame regarding her scars, Moriyah keeps herself a prisoner in her own home, only associating with a young orphan boy, a blind woman, her father, and the vineyard workers.

One brave night she ventures out and meets a young man who seems to see past her veil and into her soul. Her hopes soar over the potential only to be dashed by the harsh reality that comes with the morning. Circumstances go from bad to worse and Moriyah is forced to flee for her life.

A Light on the Hill is a fast-paced, somewhat savage tale of a flight toward justice. Moriyah’s flight is fraught with dangers on every side and within. I haven’t read anything by this author previously. I enjoy historical fiction when it is well done and this book did not disappoint.

Characters come to life as they fly through the newly discovered promised land. Descriptions of the beautiful locations throughout Canaan encourage the reader to hop on over to see for themselves where Moriyah was. It must have been a strange thing to go from being slaves, then desert dwellers in tents, to occupying conquered cities with only a handful of people inside the great walls.

The Golden Vial by Thomas Locke

Third in the Legends of the Realm series, we meet a new character with new powers, though the threat to the realm has neither diminished nor disappeared. Hyam is not only grieving his recently deceased wife but is ailing and not able to lend any assistance to those resisting the encroaching darkness.

Dally grieves, too. She has lost her home and family to the darkness in the forest and her only friends are the wolfhounds that she can communicate with. She has been communicating with someone else, a mysterious woman who warns her of her arrival and gives her messages to speak to the town officials.

When Queen Shona and her entourage arrive it is soon discovered that Dally possesses gifts that are astounding to all the mage. She is far more than a servant girl living in a shed, she is gifted with the ability to far-see and a natural inclination to magic.

Dally joins forces with Queen Shona to fight against the evil. Her gift costs her much, will it be enough?

I have read many of Thomas Locke aka Davis Bunn’s books and I must admit to loving his style of writing. He brings you on a fantastical journey in The Legends of the Realm. Plenty of magic abounds mythical creatures and the ever-present fight between good and evil.

I particularly enjoyed Dally’s rise from orphan to prominent warrior maiden in this volume of the series. The giving freely of oneself and one’s gifts for the good of a greater cause is a satisfying storyline. Enjoy the continuation of this tale, it seems like there is more to come!

Both of these titles were provided to me by Bethany House and Revell – divisions of Baker Publishing Group and Graf Martin Communications.