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Wednesday, October 26, 2016

NtB, A Fab Interview, and HNS Portland, GO!

We're less than a WEEK away from the 4th Annual #NAMEthatBUTT Games! I hope you're practicing your mythic-butt-identification!

This year I'm going to be giving away some new prizes -- including a 10 pack of Santa Herc Butt holiday cards, suitable for any winter holiday you and your friends celebrate, and a TAMER OF HORSES playing card (52 cards + jokers) deck, among other swag-esque items. And I'm going to be shipping internationally!

There will be more information about the gameplay for this season going up on this week so keep your eyes peeled!

I did a really, really fun interview with The Book Wench(es) covering everything from my writing routine and my advice to new writers to Daughter of a Thousand Years, and of course all the Bronze Age Greece goodness in between. It's mostly focused on my Helen books but there's a LOT going on so definitely give it a read -- I think we all had a lot of fun with the interview itself and I am so honored to have been their very first author interview, so I hope you'll all leave comments and love! (And if you have any follow-up questions, go ahead and leave them in the comments on the interview and I'll swing by and answer what I can!)

Are you planning to hit HNS: PORTLAND in June 2017? (Hint: the answer should be yes.) The Panels and Sessions have been announced and on June 24th at 10:30am sharp I'll be joining with the fabulous Kate Quinn, Margaret George, Judith Starkston, and Libbie Hawker to talk Mythic Tradition and Legend vs. The Historical Record! here's the blurb:
Writing historical fiction set within myth and legend poses some intriguing issues today. To what extent do fantastical elements belong in myth-inspired historical fiction? When considering the sexual and racial diversity of the past, how can we contradict the popular white-washed version that often builds around legendary icons? It seems time for writers of the mythic traditions in historical fiction to bust some stereotypes and in the process hit some historical high notes.
HNS Portland will be my only west coast appearance for probably um, a really long time! So if you're in the Pacific Northwest, you might want to jump on the Reader Festival or at least come to the Saturday evening signing,* which will be open to the public! Most of my Amalia Carosella books should be available for sale at the event but you might want to order your copy in advance and bring it with you just to be safe.

*There is the smallest chance I might not get my name in the hat fast enough for the signing -- I'll confirm this for you guys as soon as I know for sure I'm in.

If you've read TAMER OF HORSES, please consider writing a review! And if you've already posted a review on Goodreads (Thank You So Much!!), do me a solid and copy/paste that bad boy to Amazon, too!

Tamer of Horses Helen of Sparta By Helen's Hand Daughter of a Thousand Years
Amazon | Barnes&Noble | IndieBound

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

The Draken!!

Taking a brief break from the Bronze Age, because I am overdue in telling you about my grand and glorious trip to Mystic Seaport to see the Draken --

She was mostly put to bed for the winter, the deck cleared and the sail stowed and bits of the decking pulled up to allow them to get down into the hold and clean her thoroughly and pump the last of the water out -- but she was BEAUTIFUL, all the same, and I blogged more about it over yonder at! (Because it just seemed fitting?) Also, for the record, Mystic Seaport Chowder Days had the absolute best lobster bisque soup of my life.

In semi-related other news -- it sounds like DAUGHTER OF A THOUSAND YEARS will be available on Netgalley sooooooon! So those of you who have been eager to get your hands on it to review, the time is nearly upon us! Which makes me very, very anxious, if you're at all curious.

I will of course keep you posted when it goes live for all and sundry. But in the meantime -- there's always TAMER OF HORSES to tide you over! :)

Tamer of Horses Helen of Sparta By Helen's Hand Daughter of a Thousand Years
Amazon | Barnes&Noble | IndieBound

Wednesday, October 12, 2016


People are saying some phenomenal things about TAMER OF HORSES, and I couldn't be more proud of Pirithous and Hippodamia!

But that's not all --

Erin at Flashlight Commentary said:
"I loved every minute I spent with Tamer of Horses and highly recommend it to fellow readers of myth based fiction."
(5 stars!)
The Book Voucher declared booklove and:
"I am in awe of Amalia Carosella’s latest, heart-wrenching, greek-tragedy style work" (5 stars!)
Betul at Silence is Read said:
"I was living this book, I was experiencing everything they were. I just couldn't get enough." (5 stars!)
and from KMcLeer Reviews:
"just as good as the Helen series and may even be better." (5 stars!)
Even Jayne at Dear Author had something to say about Pirithous and Hippodamia!
"I enjoyed watching these two come to a relationship of equals and love." (B!)

But lest you fear we are all TAMER OF HORSES all the time, I also have some other exciting news to share about what's coming NEXT on the blog(s)!


Just like last year, the main game will take place on my Amalia Dillin blog, but I'll have some bonus events over here, too. I can't even tell you how excited I am about this year's event -- so many awesome butts to share, including some new gods and heroes we've never guessed before!!! So brush up on your sculpture and your mythology, because it's going to be a GREAT season!

Tamer of Horses Helen of Sparta By Helen's Hand Daughter of a Thousand Years
Amazon | Barnes&Noble | IndieBound

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Lapiths vs Myrmidons vs Centaurs -- TAMER OF HORSES has ARRIVED!

Now that TAMER OF HORSES is out in the world in print and for kindle, I thought it might be a good time to revisit some of my research from the drafting stage of TAMER -- just in case it got lost in the archives.

But let's start with a map to put things in perspective, shall we? Always remembering, of course, that the people of the Bronze Age didn't have the benefits of flight or satellite imagery, so their understanding of the lands and seas on which they plied their trades was probably a little bit more... relative.

Both the Myrmidons and the Lapiths were essentially tribes of men (and women) living in and around the greater region generally referred to as Thessaly in the myths, which made Peleus and Pirithous more minor kings tucked away in the North, farther from the action and trade within and without the Peloponnese and Attica. In TAMER OF HORSES, I've made them rival tribes as well, though I'm not sure there's anything to support the idea outside of the common and casual references to raiding the cattle and livestock of one's neighbors which we see repeated in the myths -- Castor and Pollux, Helen's brothers, were even killed during a cattle raid (or at least Castor was, at any rate), and we know that Pirithous and Theseus met when Pirithous sailed down to Attica to test Theseus, who he'd heard so much about, by raiding his cattle.

Extrapolating from these stories, it's entirely possible that any two kingdoms might have found themselves at odds with one another, stealing livestock back and forth, and since the Lapith people were known for their horsemanship, it felt natural to make the half-wild horses in Pirithous's possession an object of these kinds of raids. But whether or not the horses of the Lapiths were in fact some exceptional variant bred from the Mares of Magnesia or the like, or just common animals -- well, we'll never know! It IS however, possible, that the myth of the Centaurs themselves sprang from the horsemanship of those bronze age peoples from Thessaly, seen by travelers or foreign raiders riding their horses through the trees and so in tune with their animals that they might have been confused for half-men, half-beasts.

I can't decide which version of that story I prefer -- but in TAMER OF HORSES, I let the centaurs be centaurs, because who am I to gainsay generations of Ancient Greeks?

No matter their differences, neither Hippodamia nor Pirithous expected their wedding banquet to be the first battle in a war.

TAMER OF HORSES, available NOW in paperback and for kindle!

Tamer of Horses Helen of Sparta By Helen's Hand Daughter of a Thousand Years
Amazon | Barnes&Noble | IndieBound