4 out of 4 stars
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Catrin, the youngest of King Amren's three daughters, is able to call upon her animal guide, The Raven, and harness his magical powers to see all that he sees in both the present and in the future. King Amren explained to Catrin that just before he had his first queen beheaded for treason, she issued a curse that his future queen would give birth to a daughter who would rise as a raven and overtake his kingdom. Then King Amren advised Catrin that she was The Raven referenced in that curse.
To further complicate matters, the curse appears as an inscription on the blade of King Amren's dagger and continues to blur, disappear altogether or even rewrite itself. It seems that only Catrin's magic can rewrite the curse to save her father and his kingdom.
When a Roman army unexpectedly marches into King Amren's territory, Catrin immediately falls for one of the younger soldiers, Marcellus Antonius. The object of Catrin's desire, Marcellus, is the son of a Roman Senator and a descendent of the legendary Mark Antony. Soon their forbidden alliance adds another intriguing layer to an already complicated plot.
I give Apollo's Raven by Linnea Tanner 4 out of 4 stars because it includes all of the elements that I love in a novel- mystery, magic, intrigue and romance. Also, this book was well-edited, which further added to my enjoyment of reading it. There was nothing about this book that I disliked. Apollo's Raven should appeal to anyone interested in reading about curses, sorceresses, magic and forbidden love. Someone not at all interested in fantasy, romance or political intrigue would probably not enjoy this book. Also, there were a few gruesome details that might offend a few readers.
Linnea Tanner did an excellent and thorough job of developing and defining the characters in this novel. There are many facets to each character's personality ranging from true and honest to mischievous and even wicked. Additionally, the plot is filled with numerous twists, forbidden alliances and betrayals. Throughout much of the book, the reader is still trying to determine which of the characters can be trusted and which ones truly are evil.
The author appeared to have conducted extensive research in order to present such an involved historical saga of Rome and Britannia in 24 A.D. Additionally, Tanner went into great detail regarding Celtic mythology and Druid customs. I found these tidbits of knowledge especially fascinating. Apollo's Raven held my attention until the end and compels me to read the sequel to learn how this intriguing story will end.
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