Greymalkin is an old English name for a witches familiar and he appears in Shakespeare’s Macbeth. The name derives from the old word ‘Malkin’ meaning cat. These kinds of details always attract my eye so I wondered what I was going to find in this story.
Author: Chris Quinton
Publisher: Self Published
Cover Artist: Meredith Russell
Rating: 4.5 of 5 Stars
The mutual attraction between Jesse and Will is a bonus for Melusine when her enemies close in and she needs to rebuild her war band—starting with Jesse, Will, and Greymalkin.
Jesse Adams is an ex-rugby player who’s gone into seclusion to avoid the media following a guilty verdict in a court case. Jesse has come to live for a year in Greenlynn, where he is supposed to be writing his biography.
Will Blake is an out and proud policeman, respected and liked by the community he helps to protect from rural crime.
When the two men meet their attraction is instant, but they have no idea their love will draw them into a centuries’ old conflict.
Melusine, a deity of rivers and seas, long ago lost the Battle of the Betrayal and is imprisoned in a nexus centred on the source of the Lynn River. She can only travel in the flowing water of her river, and cannot set foot on her banks. Her cats are not so bound. Neither pets nor familiars, they move freely between the realities, her agents among the humans who live along the Lynn.
When Melusine’s enemies come to the valley in search of revenge, Jesse and Will discover they have a part to play in the ancient feud. Do they commit to becoming part of a mythical triad, or leave the valley and forget they ever knew that magic exists?
I was just relaxing into this novel being introduced to the disgraced Rugby player Jesse Adams and loving the easy writing style when I reached chapter two and nearly gave up. The story suddenly changed location, and for a few pages it felt like the language had changed as well with a plethora of welsh sounding names and words that my brain could not pronounce.
I find if my brain cannot pronounce a name I don’t seem to retain it and a book can become confusing. However, as I was reviewing I persevered, and I am so glad I did!
The names I needed to remember diminished, and I was left with an excellent story of how ‘other realms’ outside of our reality, can affect ordinary lives. Jesse finds more than just a new home when he takes a year out, to clear his name by writing his autobiography. He discovers Will, the local policeman, a whole world of magic, battles over an imprisoned leader and a purpose in life. Jesse, Will and the battle cat Greymalkin, form a triad and defend the valley they live in from age old foes,
The sky was cloudless, and the waning moon spread its own meagre illumination. The lights of distant towns gilded the horizon, and those from the village below threw strange shadows.
I love the trope that involves weaving the ordinary world with the extraordinary, and this, the first book in a series about this world, is spot on. I love the green valley, village life and mentalities mixed with the universal themes of the paranormal, fantasy and legend. There is a romance between Will and Jesse and it is believable despite the short time before it becomes intense and hot. Above the fantasy layer, the romance theme is not forgotten, despite the traumas that await them and Greymalkin.
We meet the beautiful demi goddess Melusine, prisoner and jailer, and her clowder of cats who are not as they seem. The cats all start to become personalities in their own right and although we learn most about Greymalkin, as he forms the triad with Jess and Will, the other cats form an interesting backdrop to this story and will each have their own book I surmise. Although, I didn’t want this book to end I’m quite intrigued to find how the other cats find their own triads in the books that follow.
I finish my review with a typically English definition of true love. Jesse asks this of his Mum,
How do you know when you’ve fallen in love?…
She hugged him and said, When you think with your heart, not your willy or your head.
I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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