Friday, January 19, 2018

Tracy Ann Miller’s THE MAIDEN SEER – Saxon Reader of Runes Falls for a Viking Warrior

Set in “the Great Isle” (England) in 877, this is the story of Amber, known in Wessex as “the Maiden Seer”, who can see the future and helps her uncle King Alfred with battle strategy. Hoping to find peace in the convent life away from everyone’s demands, she leaves her village, but before she does, she has a dream of killing a giant oak, who she believes is a man.

Konnar is a Viking tired of raiding. He plans to retire from that life to East Anglia where he is a jarl. But first he must abduct the Maiden Seer and deliver her (in tact) to Dierk the RavenHair who will pay him with treasure. All except Amber believe that her virginity is what enables her to read the runes.
With her visions and her runes, she is able to figure out a few of Konnar’s secrets and plans to use them against him. She is not above lies, treachery and manipulation to get what she wants. And anger for what she perceives is a wrong done her by Konnar.
At nearly 400 pages, the story is a long one as Konnar and Amber travel by his knorr, a Viking ship, and then by land to East Anglia and finally to Wessex. 

Miller has obviously done much research into the Viking culture and England of the time and includes much historic detail and authentic terms. Amber mixes Christianity with the pagan reading of runes to tell the future, which was an interesting twist. Her reading of the runes for Konnar’s men was absorbing.  
There are many good characters, including Konnar’s men and Dierk, the villain, who is is well cast.
As with her first novel, Loveweaver, initially, I found the author’s word choices and writing style a bit difficult, but once I became used to her style, the story became very entertaining. 

The exciting ending brings a satisfying resolution to their long-developing love.

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