The Plight of a People by J. W. Barlament

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The Plight of a People: Volume I

by J. W. Barlament

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Here is an epic of countless centuries and bloody conflicts that rage through an ancient world of gods and beasts.

Split into three separate stories, each focusing on one man doing his best to fight through the many plights of the Roesanian people, this debut novel is a literary fantasy epic filled with the tales of three great wars. The veteran commander Solinus fights against a great horde of religious zealots to secure his position in a new land in Part I. In Part II, Emperor Aethon fights to keep both his power and his empire secured from the greedy hands of invaders and opportunists alike. Lastly, in Part III, the young King Eulasus begins a rebellion against a tyrannical regime to secure the freedom of the Roesanians once and for all. All three parts tell their own stories, but each one is deeply intertwined with the others to form one overall novel about the desperate struggle of one people to survive despite a myriad of tragedies being hurled at them.



A Word from the Author

Author J. W. Barlament

 

No matter the time period in which they existed, the governments of the world have always been raised by those filled with ambition and taken ahold of by those filled with greed. To display the full extent of this and the relationship between the ruler and the ruled in ancient times, I have written this novel. It serves not only as my contribution of entertainment to the literary world, but also as the first of five books to examine the very nature of the institutions that rule over us all. It is but my view on the greatest and most pervasive of all human problems, and likely the greatest tragedy of our societies’ existence.

(J. W. Barlament, October 2017)

 

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Brief Candles by Pamela Jean Horter-Moore

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Brief Candles

by Pamela Jean Horter-Moore

 

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In 1483, twelve year old Edward V ascended the throne as King of England, following the sudden death of his father. Edward IV had reigned for twenty years, bringing England the stability and prosperity that had eluded it during the early years of those tumultuous times popularly known as the Wars of the Roses.
Although there were more periods of peace than the popular name would suggest, the Wars were the final dispute over succession by the colorful and dynamic Plantagenet dynasty, which had ruled England for three hundred years and whose history was marked by family conflict. The Wars of the Roses themselves were a struggle between the families of Lancaster and York, cousins descended from Edward III.

Under the leadership of Edward IV, York was victorious, but the legacy of the Plantagenets would not die. Edward had made a love match with Elizabeth Woodville, the daughter of English gentry, an ambitious woman with many relatives. This and other efforts by Edward to rule as a King on his own did not please his cousin and mentor, Richard Neville, nor his younger brothers, the treacherous George, Duke of Clarence and Richard, Duke of Gloucester. In time, Edward was forced to destroy his Neville cousin and to execute his brother George, who never ceased to conspire against him. For the remainder of Edward’s reign, Richard of Gloucester bided his time, eager for revenge against Edward’s queen and her family.

This was the history that young Edward V inherited in 1483, as the old wounds within the Yorkist family were reopened. He himself was too young to have experienced or participated in these conflicts, but it was he who suffered for them, ultimately losing his crown and his life in the power struggle between him and his Woodville kin and his uncle Richard of Gloucester.

My book centers upon Edward V as he is locked in bitter contest with his uncle to defend his friends and himself from the avalanche of events that will eventually end in death for him and his younger brother, the legendary “Princes in the Tower.” Responsible for their safety, if not for their murders, Richard assumes the crown as Richard III, loses the confidence of the Yorkist loyalists and likewise loses his life on Bosworth field. Thus, the Plantagenet dynasty is destroyed and, from it, the Tudor dynasty is born.

The struggle between Edward and Richard is a recounting of themes that occur time after time in literature and history. The royal youth is disinherited by an usurping uncle and must either regain his crown or lose his life. The Wheel of Fortune relentlessly turns, lifting some up and dashing others down, disregarding youth and innocence in its turning. In a world of men, power brings about corruption and destruction, and no one who seeks it is safe.




A Word from the Author

Author Pamela Horter pictureWhen I first published my historical novel “Brief Candles” in 1983, it was the culmination of a twenty-year passion for that period of English history known as the Wars of the Roses.

My interest in the Wars of the Roses began when I was 12 years old. I had been leafing through old encyclopedias looking for a timeframe in which to set the short story I was writing.

When I encountered 12-year old King Edward V, I felt an immediate affinity for him and his tragic story. He lost his father, his loved ones, his crown and his life, along with that of his little brother Richard, Duke of York, in the darkness of the Tower of London.

As the years went by, I continued my enthusiasm for the time period and for the strange landscape of late fifteenth-century England. I understood the complex politics that divided the royal Houses of York and Lancaster and the colorful individuals who participated in this struggle between cousins for the throne of England.

I came to respect and admire King Edward IV, who won his throne on the battlefield at the age of 18 and who went on to reign over an England that was once more made stable and prosperous.

What happened after his death at age 40 is a matter that continues to provoke controversy and passion.

“Brief Candles” is Edward V’s story. After the death of his father, power politics interfered with his peaceful succession. His uncle Richard of Gloucester moved ruthlessly to undercut and destroy his supporters, overthrowing the young king and taking his place as Richard III. The uncrowned Edward V and his brother Richard of York disappeared in the Tower of London.

This was a violent and controversial period of English history, and I have dedicated a great deal of my life trying to understand it. “Brief Candles” is a true story of youthful innocence exposed to the brutal realities of power-lust and party rivalry.

(Pamela Jean Horter-Moore, October 2017)

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LoveQuest by Pamela Jean Horter-Moore

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LoveQuest is a romantic fantasy

by Pamela Jean Horter-Moore

 

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…a god’s love for a mortal woman….

Aphrodite, the goddess of Beauty, has blessed the mortal girl Psyche with a lovely face that captivates the admiration of all who seeher. Psyche, however, offends the goddess by thinking more of winning her malicious sisters’ approval than of the gifts the goddess has given her.

Although the oracle of Apollo promised Psyche a marvelous marriage to someone “not human,” Aphrodite resolves to destroy her happiness by asking her son Eros, the god of Love, to punish Psyche with a life of lovelessness.

Aphrodite’s plans go wrong when Eros accidentally wounds himself with his own arrow while attempting to carry out his mother’s will, falling in love with the woman his mother hates.

Knowing that his mother doesn’t approve and torn between the two women he loves most, Eros pursues Psyche by deceiving his mother and concealing his identify from Psyche.

Perplexed by Eros’ invisibility and his passion for her, Psyche is tempted by her jealous sisters to sabotage her romance.

Psyche must choose between betrayal and fidelity and suffer the consequences of her decision, just as Eros must connive to win her love and the approval of his mother. Both of them must be put to the test in order to find their heart’s desire.




A Word from the Author

Author Pamela Horter pictureI’ve never really considered myself a romantic, but I’ve poured all my most romantic notions into LoveQuest.

Greek mythology has always intrigued me, and few stories can equal the romance of Eros and Psyche. Here is Eros, the god of Love, the perfect youth and the perfect lover, the divine representation of erotic passion, pursuing the flawed and vacillating mortal Psyche, who cannot live up to his love for her. A hero larger than life, ardent, sensitive, and attentive, Eros represents the summit of what a woman might desire in a mate.

However, Eros is not free. The dutiful son of Aphrodite, the goddess of Beauty, he is bound by the constraints of his mother’s authority over him. Eros is at the crossroads of manhood, struggling with his obedience to his mother and his desire to seek life on his own terms.

Psyche likewise has her challenges. She has offended Aphrodite by depreciating her gift of beauty and instead seeking mediocrity and the acceptance of her malicious sisters. As a result, she has now become the object of Aphrodite’s wrath. Aphrodite insists that Eros punish Psyche for her sin.
Carrying out his mother’s punishment, Eros accidentally wounds himself with his own arrow and falls in love with Psyche, knowing that his mother hates her and will never consent to the romance.

Not wanting to choose between the two women he loves, Eros decides to deceive both of them with an awkward ruse that allows him to possess Psyche while at the same time duping his mother. Such a ruse can’t last forever; Aphrodite is not easily fooled, and Psyche is so confused by her lover’s secret identity that she yearns for her old life and the familiarity of her sisters’ torment. Neither Eros nor Psyche will find their heart’s desire until they overcome the falsehoods that are obstructing their happiness.

More than a love story, the tale of Eros and Psyche is an allegory of the soul in search of its heart’s desire, and a fable of betrayal and the redeeming power of love.

(Pamela Jean Horter-Moore, October 2017)

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