Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Lleu of the Lynx and the Druidess


Today I’m interviewing the hero of The Lynx and the Druidess, who is the Welsh Sun God, Lleu, pronounced Lou.

 


Lleu since you are the hero of a romance book, let me ask you what has been your best or worst date?

“Well, we ancient gods don’t really date in the way you modern mortals do. But my worst relationship with a woman was with my wife Blodeuwedd. It all began with a tinged (that’s kind of like a curse or a rule) that my mother the goddess Arianrhod put on me which prohibited me from having a wife. So, gods Math and Gwydion conjured a wife from me out of flowers and named her goddess Blodeuwedd.  I thought the marriage was going well until she and her human lover tried to kill me.  I survived. And god Gwydion, my uncle, turned Blodeuwedd into an owl to punish her. Now, the best relationship I’ve ever had with a woman was with Wyndolen.”

She’s the heroine of your story, The Lynx and the Druidess, right?

“Yes,”

And how did you meet?

“The first time I saw her, I scried her by peering into the pond of the wise salmon in the Otherworld. Fire coursed through me as I watched this dark-haired enchantress. swirl in a rhythmic dance, winnowing the harvest by holding her wicker basket high as husks and kernels leaped up from the bottom of it and the wispy chaff caught by the breeze floated above her.”

She sounds gorgeous and graceful. Now, I ask many people this next question, which is if you could be an animal which one would you be? But, in your case, you actually have transformed to other animals and the Lynx is the creature associated with you the most? Why do you like shapeshifting into a lynx?

“There are so many things I love about the majestic lynx. One thing I admire the most is that they are mighty hunters. I love to hunt but I can’t compare to the skills of a lynx when in my human form. Even in deep snow they can maneuver their environment well and capture their prey. And in the dense forest, they are as stealthy as shadows and use the element of surprise. Also, many Celts call them Llewyn, naming them after me.”

And, you also have a huge Celtic festival named after you? Tell us about that.

“Lughnasa which is pronounced (LOO-nuss-uh) takes place in August, to celebrate the first Harvest and to honor me, god Lleu. Food is more abundant at this festival than any other, due to the harvest, so there is a great feast. It is often a time when many couples get married. One Lughnasa tradition is to pick ripe bilberries and string them into a bracelet for your lover. The British Celts would also fashion a wheel of the year, set it aflame, and the druid, using an iron rod, would roll it down a hill, chanting something like, God of the sun, the wheel has turned, the yearly end of your reign has come. The sun begins its journey, winter nears. The season turns, sun and earth, life to death. Lughnasa, Lughnasa. But one of the biggest events of the festival was the huge summer bonfire that brought it to a close each year.”

“It sounds exciting and on that note, I’ll bring our interview to a close. And Lleu thank you so much for visiting with us today.

The Lynx and the Druidess
The Druidry and the Beast Series
Book Five
Cornelia Amiri
Genre: Fantasy Romance
Date of Publication: July 1, 2020
ASIN: B08BNNFWBF
Number of pages: 94
Word Count: 22,600
Cover Artist: Kyra Starr
Tagline: Loving a god has its advantages
Book Description:
Lleu, the radiant sun god, crosses between worlds to the Silures village for the fierce and stunning druidess, Wendolyn —a woman worth battling for. He longs to celebrate Lughnasa, the festival that honors him, with her.
Wendolyn is captivated by the striking stranger the moment he wanders into her village. Furthermore, she wants him with a fervor, burning her from within. However, he’s hiding his true identity. When he vows to save her tribe from the Romans marching toward them, everyone, including her dead father in a dream, says he is a coward who has run off.
Lleu is determined to win the love of druidess Wendolyn even if it means fighting the Roman army singled handed—by shapeshifting into in his lynx body.
Will her tribe survive the Romans? And, can Wendolyn and Lleu’s relationship survive her tribe’s mistrust of him?

The Lynx and the Druidess: Book Five Druidry and the Beast

 

Monday, July 27, 2020

Hello readers,

I just wanted to let you know that today I'm blogging, doing interviews, and giveaways for my new release The Lynx and the Druidess. The schedules below. Please stop by:

In the Kitchen with Cornelia Amiri Recipe for Apple Crisp #inthekitchen #applecrisp https://creativelygreen.blogspot.com/2020/07/in-kitchen-with-cornelia-amiri-recipe.html


INTERVIEW - Supernatural Central http://supernaturalcentral.blogspot.com/


INTERVIEW - FANTASY - THE LYNX AND THE DRUIDESS (Druidry and the Beast, #5) by Cornelia Amiri #bewitchingbooktours https://thebookjunkiereadspromos.blogspot.com/2020/07/book-blitz-winterview-fantasy-lynx-and-druidess.html


Bewitching Book Blitz- The Lynx and the Druidess by Cornelia Amiri #fantasyromance #bewitchingbooktours http://ow.ly/vGAw50AIVh4

The Lynx and the Druidess The Druidry and the Beast Series Book Five Cornelia Amiri - Fantasy Romance - Loving a god has its advantages https://saphsbooks.blogspot.com/2020/07/book-spotlight-giveaway-lynx-and.html


Interview - The Lynx and the Druidess by Cornelia Amiri #fantasyromance #authorinterview http://ow.ly/xbaG50AIUyJ


Character Interview - The Lynx and the Druidess by Cornelia Amiri #fantasyromance
https://fang-tasticbooks.blogspot.com/2020/07/character-interview-lynx-and-druidess.html

Also, my boxsets: Druid Hearts (a duology book bundle) and Druidry and the Beast (the full series) are now available in print as well as ebook 

Thursday, July 23, 2020

New Release — The Lynx and the Druidess

I have a new release, The Lynx and the Druidess, the fifth and final book in the Druidry and the Beast Series.

Blurb: 
Loving a god has its advantages

Lleu, the radiant sun god, crosses between worlds to the
Silures village for the fierce and stunning druidess, Wendolyn —a woman worth
battling for. He longs to celebrate Lughnasa, the festival that honors him, with her.
Wendolyn is captivated by the striking stranger the moment he wanders into her
village. Furthermore, she wants him with a fervor, burning her from within.
However, he’s hiding his true identity. When he vows to save her tribe from the
Romans marching toward them, everyone, including her dead father in a dream,
says he is a coward who has run off.

Lleu is determined to win the love of druidess Wendolyn even if it means fighting
the Roman army singled handed—by shapeshifting into in his lynx body.
Will her tribe survive the Romans? And, can Wendolyn and Lleu’s relationship
survive her tribe’s mistrust of him?

Excerpt:

With her heart hammering, Wyndolen stared with wonder at Lleu’s luscious nude
body. She only glanced away long enough to pull a white robe, speckled with gold, out of
the chest in the corner. She tugged it on, then fastened a plaid cloak over it with a round
silver broach and latched her gaze onto Lleu again while he slipped his clothes back on.
They left the roundhouse and walked hand in hand to Cynfor’s home.
She called out to the woodmaker, “It is time.”
Cynfor stepped out, clutching an iron rod and the wheel of the year coated with
gooey tar. As the three walked together to the center of the village, men, women, and
children gathered around the druidess, muttering, “Lleu,” and “coward.”
Scanning the angry faces in the crowd, Wyndolen sighed. If only they knew the
truth about him. But she couldn’t blame them, she was as guilty as they were. She hadn’t
recognized he was a god, even after he’d told her. No, he had to show her his magic spear
and reveal his dazzling aura. Now the others needed to learn the truth. Tonight, at his
festival, she would announce who he really was. But first she had to prepare her
tribesmen for the news, to lessen their shock.
She held her palm upward toward the crowd and cleared her throat. “Hear me, I
have a surprise for all of you. The presence of the god Lleu is here. You do not see him as
he is in the guise of one of us. So, take care of how you treat each other, lest you offend
the deity.”
Their expressions shifted from anger to shame as they were now all on their best
behavior.
Taking graceful steps, she led all her tribesmen, chief, and Lleu to a cliff. Their
chief proudly carried a blazing firebrand, and Cynfor held the sacred wheel with reverent
hands. Everyone grew quiet and gazed down the mountain slope.
Wyndolen announced, “We have gathered this Lughnasa to observe the Wheel of
the Year as it turns.” She raised her arms to the sky and smiled at Lleu as she chanted,
“The sun burns, yet winter nears. The season turns. Summer comes to an end. Sun and
earth, life to death the wheel turns, Lughnasa, Lughnasa.”
She took the torqueh from Corio, handed it to Lleu, and he lit the wheel of year
aflame. Cynfor handed Wyndolen the iron rod. Then, the sun god, Lleu, ran beside her,
on the other side of the flaming wheel, as she used the rod to roll it down that part of the
mountain slope.
She chanted, “God of the sun, the wheel has turned, the yearly end of your reign
has come.”
Smoke rose, as flames ate the wood. The wheel reached its end at the foot of the
slope and crumbled into ash and burning fragments. The crowd stopped in their tracks
and circled the symbol of the dying Lleu.

Along with The Lynx and the Druidess I have released an ebook box set of the entire series, Druidry and the Beast.

Blurb: 
Five hot, shapeshifter gods and five passionate druidesses save the tribes of Ancient Britain.

Can these couples overcome the surmountable odds of a romance between mortals and immortals being anything more than a Celtic fire festival tryst? As the wheel of the year, flaming like searing desire both on Earth and the Otherworld, turns with the seasons from:

Samhain with God Gwydion, a wolf shapeshifter, and druidess Seren, as the sensual magic brewing between them could be destroyed by a warning of danger from beyond the grave.

Beltane with God Dewey, a dragon shapeshifter, and druidess Nona, dealing with whatever evil the jealous chief might unleash on them.

The Winter Solstice with God Artaois, a bear shapeshifter, and Druidess Bronwen, fighting to save her tribe from starvation.

The Summer Solstice with Epon, a unicorn shapeshifter and druidess Maelona, as he battles the Romans to save her tribe.

Lughnasa, with God Lleu, a lynx shapeshifter and Druidess Wendolen as he tries to overcome the Romans and she tries to overcome her tribes’ mistrust of Lleu.


Monday, June 22, 2020

A Guide To Romance Book Covers

My historical fantasy romance, The Scottish Selkie, has a new cover.

Many of my romance books have clinch covers--known for showing luscious bare-chested heroes and beautiful heroines locked in a passionate and suggestive embrace.

The clinch became the standard romance cover in the late 1970’s.  And, by the late 1980s, every cover of Romantic Times Magazine was cinch cover art for an upcoming romance novel.

In the 1990s the cover art softened with more pastel hues and the cover model poses alluded swooning more than ecstasy.

Also, in the late 1980s and early 1990s many book covers for historical and small-town contemporary romances featured objects and landscapes prominent to the storyline. They clued the reader to the time and place of the novels.

 Some romance book covers featured symbolic objects like my Swords and Roses cover.

Another type of romance cover is the cartoon cover as shown with this example of the cover art of Back To the One I Love.

Research has shown that readers who buy erotic romance ebooks usually favor cinch covers. Here is a cinch cover from my soon to be released novel, The Lynx and the Druidess, the final book in my Druidry and the Beast series.

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Summer Solstice

Summer 

This week of quarantine I started venturing from my apartment into the warm sunshine—looking at the community garden and sitting on the bench by the water fountain. I even went to the park that had been taken over by the ducks. The sun is not only good for crops it's good for humans too. 

The ancient Britts knew this. Going all the way back to the Neolithic tribes, they celebrated the amber fireball in the sky at the Summer Solstice. They even built monuments, such as Stonehenge, that framed the rising or setting of the Sun on the solstices. 


Later the Bronze Age and Iron Age Celts also celebrated the sun on the longest day of the year with festivals. The word Solstice comes from the Latin sol meaning sun and sisto which means to stand still. But Alban Hefin, the name the Druids gave to the Summer Solstice means the Light of the Shore or Light of Summer. The shore because it’s where the elements of land, water and sky meet, which the druids considered a place that’s in-between worlds, and the light of the summer because that’s when it shines at its broadest.
The Druids saw the Summer Solstice as a time to open up a path towards light and abundance and banish evil spirits through the light of the sun. They’d pray for a good harvest, as it was halfway through the growing season. Also, as the Summer Solstice was seen as a time of change, nature, and new beginnings it was associated with fertility. Feasting and dancing took place and bonfires were lit in celebration. And lovers traditionally clasped hands and leaped over bonfires. Some believed the higher the couple jumped, the higher their crops would grow. The ancient Celts also told and acted out the legend of the Oak King versus the Holly King. On the 21st of June - the Oak King is at his strongest. But his power gradually weakens until the Winter Solstice on December 21 when the Holly King reigns again.
In many regions (especially Europe), June 24 marks the midpoint of the growing season, halfway between planting and harvest, and is called Midsummer. People also have festivals for Midsummer where they feast, dance, and sing.
This year, 2020, the Summer Solstice takes place in the Northern Hemisphere on Saturday, June 20th at 5:44 eastern time. The Farmer’s Almanac has a sunrise and sunset calculator at https://www.almanac.com/astronomy/sun-rise-and-set  to calculate  how many hours of sunshine you’ll get in your location on the solstice.

The fourth book in my Druidry and the Beast series, The Unicorn and the Druidess, takes place during the Summer Solstice.


At Summer Solstice people aren’t what they seem—they could be… a unicorn …a god…or someone you fall in love with

Druidess Maelona pursues a unicorn into the woods and returns with a runaway slave boy she takes under her wing. Before she can go back to look for the unicorn, a handsome stranger ignites a fiery attraction within her. But she can tell he's keeping something from her. She suspects that he may be a Roman spy.

God Epon’s blood burns at first sight of the gorgeous Druidess. Goaded by his desire for her he passes through the portal from the otherworld as a unicorn. Then he runs into the forest and she gives chase. There he shapeshifts into human form so he can get to know her better. Plus, to win her trust, he fights the Romans and saves her tribe. But even then, will he and Maelona be able to overcome the surmountable odds of a romance between a mortal and immortal being anything more than a summertime tryst?



Monday, March 23, 2020

2 Things To Celebrate: Women's History & Irish/American Heritage Month

Statue of Molly Malone

With the coronavirus it's hard to remember that we have things to celebrate but we do. For March we're honoring Women in History and the History of Ireland because March is National Women's History Month and Irish-American Heritage Month.

My nonfiction Irish History book, Forged in Bronze and Iron: The High Kings of Ireland covers Irish-American Heritage as well as National Women's History with famous Irish women of history including Macha Mong Ruad —the only woman listed as a High King of Ireland. 
There is a nice twist with my nonfiction book—two bonus romance novels.
Here's the blurb:
A Legacy no one can steal
For centuries in grand feasting halls and around flickering peat fires bards sung of the exploits of High Kings such as Tigernmas—Lord of Death and Niall of the Nine Hostages, possibly one of the most potent men to ever live. 
Forged in Irish Bronze and Iron chronicles this mythic legacy from around 1700 BC up to 500 AD. This fascinating record of the High Kings is interwoven with modern scientific, DNA, and archeological evidence from the Bronze Age and the Iron age. 
Two bonus fiction novelettes are included. Romantic tales of the Bronze and Iron age and the High Kings. 
Queen of Kings
The only woman listed as a High King of Ireland
As wild and beautiful as the land she rules, all men lust for her, warriors and kings bow to her might and magic. Yet, only one champion comes forth to gift her with a white bull and true love. But can the handsome stranger best her skills and win her heart?
Timeless Voyage
Neither centuries that have come and gone nor the seas between us can keep us apart.
As the Celtic pirate, Anwen, presses her hard iron dagger against the Roman's throat, memories of fated lovers, druids, and sacrifice, stay her hand. But, in this lifetime they are foes, Roman and Celt. Can Anwen and Kaeso steer their timeless voyage to a happy destiny or will they be robbed of love once more? 
Excerpt:
Macha Mong Ruadh, (Of the Red Braid) daughter of Aedh Ruadh, demanded her father's fourth turn as High King, claiming it was her right as his heir. Dithorba and Cimbaeth said that they would not give the sovereignty to a woman. Macha’s only response was…War.
Macha battled Dithorba and his sons, and she was victorious. She then banished Dithorba and his five sons into the wildernesses of Connacht. Dithorba was slain in Connacht. Dithorba’s five sons, Baeth, Bras, Betach, Uallach, and Borbchas demanded their father’s turn at the sovereignty. Macha denied them, for she had defeated Dithorba on the battlefield and taken her right to rule by force. Macha learned that Dithorba’s sons were plotting against her. Macha Mong Ruad then persuaded Cimbaeth to wed her to combine their two armies.
Macha went to Connacht and disguised herself as a woman with leprosy. She found the five brothers hiding out in the forest, carousing around a cook fire as they roasted a wild boar. One by one the brothers were inflamed by her beauty, which she used to her advantage by overpowering them and tying them up. The Ulstermen wanted Dithorba’s sons killed, but Macha enslaved them instead, forcing them to build the hillfort of Emain Macha. One version is that she marked the great hillfort’s boundaries with the pin of her brooch. Emain Macha means Macha's brooch. However, another explanation for the name of the hillfort may be that a brooch’s large circular wheel shape, crossed by a long pin, looks a lot like the great circular rampart surrounded by a Celtic fortress.
In the late 1960s, archaeologists excavated the large mound at the center and found the site had been reconstructed several times, beginning with a ditched enclosure, 150 meters wide, that was built in the Late Bronze Age.  There was an incredible archeological find here, the skull of a Barbary ape, native to North Africa, that dated to 350 BC.
Moving from archeology back to the High King Cimbaeth: he served seven years in the sovereignty of Ireland after marrying Macha, but then died of a plague at Eamain Macha. He was the first king of Eamain.
Upon the death of Cimbaeth, Macha Mong Ruadh, daughter of Aedh Ruadh, became High King of Ireland. She took her place on the throne as sole ruler. After she had ruled for seven years, she was slain by Reachtaidh Righdhearg, son of Lughaidh. Geoffrey Geoffrey Keating dates her reign from 468 to 461 BC. The Annals of the Four Masters from 661 to 654 BC. So, with the death of Macha of the Red Braid, let us move into the Irish Iron Age.

Thursday, January 23, 2020

The Hottest Thing in Unicorns





The Unicorn and the Druidess, my latest book, the fourth novella in the Druidry and the Beast series, is set in Iron Age Britain during the Summer Solstice. In the ancient Celtic culture, the unicorn had a place in the turning of the seasons and the Summer Solstice festival. The Celts teamed up the White Horse with the Oak Tree to symbolize  Summer and the Unicorn with Holly to stand for Winter. The vigor of the White Horse carried the Celts through Summer, while the Unicorn's endurance empowered them through the re-birth brought by Winter. 

The unicorn was so important to the Celts that the Scottish adopted it as the symbol of their country. One reason is that it's the natural enemy of the lion - which represented English royals.  Another reason is that it's a proud and brave beast that would rather die than be captured. In fact, in the 15th and 16th centuries in Scotland, they used golden coins called unicorns and half-unicorns with the animal depicted on them. Also, Clan Cunningham's crest features the image of a unicorn's head. 

Unicorns were popular throughout Europe, including Italy. Did you know Leonardo da Vinci wrote about unicorns in his notebook? The unicorn, through its intemperance and not knowing how to control itself, for the love it bears to fair maidens forgets its ferocity and wildness; and laying aside all fear it will go up to a seated damsel and fall to sleep in her lap, and thus the hunters take it.



Fun Facts about Celtic Unicorns:

  • The Celts believed unicorns had the power to see people's true character and value.
  • The Unicorn is the Celtic Astrology sign for people born from July 8 to August 4.
  • In Celtic mythology, the Unicorn's horn resembled a flaming spear and was a symbol of the sun's power. It could heal and kill.
  • The Celts believed a unicorn horn offered protection against evil, and the ability to detect and counteract poisons. If you set a unicorn horn on a table laid with food, the horn would sweat or become moist if the food was poisoned.
  • A group of unicorns is called a blessing of unicorns!
In The Unicorn and the Druidess my unicorn is also a god who comes to eath because he's attracted to Maelona the Druidess of the Belgae tribe. This god, who goes by the name Epon, can shapeshift from the form of a man to that of a unicorn.

Here's the blurb:
At Summer Solstice people aren’t what they seem—they could be… a unicorn …a god…or someone you fall in love with.

Druidess Maelona pursues a unicorn into the woods and returns with a runaway slave boy she takes under her wing. Before she can go back to look for the unicorn, a handsome stranger ignites a fiery attraction within her. But she can tell he's keeping something from her. She suspects that he may be a Roman spy.

God Epon’s blood burns at first sight of the gorgeous Druidess. Goaded by his desire for her he passes through the portal from the otherworld as a unicorn. Then he runs into the forest and she gives chase. There he shapeshifts into human form so he can get to know her better. 

Then, to win her trust, he fights the Romans and saves her tribe. But even then, will he and Maelona be able to overcome the surmountable odds of a romance between a mortal and immortal being anything more than a summertime tryst?

The Unicorn and the Druidess will be released in February, the month of romance, but it's available to preorder now. It's the fourth book in the Druidry and the Beast series. Please order it at https://www.amazon.com/Unicorn-Druidess-Druidry-Beast-Book-ebook/dp/B0841RJY9B/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=the+unicorn+and+the+druidess&qid=1579622613&s=digital-text&sr=1-1

You can see more about this novella series here at https://www.amazon.com/s?k=druidry+and+the+beast&i=digital-text&ref=nb_sb_noss and Cornelia's books at http://CorneliaAmiri.com