The Cursed Ground Duology by A. Roy King Review+Excerpt

The Child Steelers
Isn’t this a gorgeous cover!!! 😍

Hello my little favorite munchkins. How are you all doing today? I am officially back to school today so I will try to stick my blogging goals.  tHopefully I don’t have to do much today, but knowing my AP class I will. I am on another book. Somehow I am the reading goddess. I really am. I mean I am on about my 11th book already. I am more than a 10% into my reading goal. I may need to pick a harder challenge next year. My avid reading is insane. I mean I am a reading addict. If there was such a thing I would probably be the poster child.

Anyways why don’t we get ahead to the post.


The Child-Stealers (The Cursed Ground #1)
by A. Roy King
Genre: Historical Fantasy
Age category: Young Adult/ Adult
Pages: 93
Release Date: January 20, 2015

Blurb:
In “The Child-Stealers,” a young man named Boon undertakes a desperate search for his kidnapped sister, aided by a small force of loyal companions. Traveling from the peaceful agricultural community called the Till, Boon and his friends must learn how to face conflict and must unravel the mystery of the fierce raiders who are carrying off children into the wilderness.

This novella-length story is the first episode of “The Cursed Ground” historical-adventure series. A saga set in the ancient world, “The Cursed Ground” tells the story of a group of defenders who struggle to protect their communities from the growing violence in the world around them. Meanwhile, a small brotherhood is charged with carrying an unpopular message to humankind: The Creator has declared that this violent world will come to an end.


REVIEW:

  • Since both of these books are short so will be my reviews.

This is a short story yet there was so much put into it. The writing was excellent and the plot line went along perfectly with the synopsis. The characters seemed believable in many factors and there was little to no romantic sub plots. There was many questions that this novel brings up but little to none of them are answered which was sad. Along with this is a biblical book of sorts so if you are not into that type of genre then you may not be interested in reading this novel. In conclusion, this novel was written well however do to the subject of the book not answering the questions that there were presented I had to lower my star rating.

I give this book 3/5 stars. 


The Child-Stealers
Book 1 of The Cursed Ground
Excerpt
By A. Roy King
Copyright 2015 A. Roy King
ISBN-10: 0986276405
ISBN-13: 978-0- 9862764-0- 8
By A. Roy King:
Edhai
Historical series
Book One: The Child-Stealers
Book Two: Children of the Keeper
Martyroi
Historical series under development
For updates on these series
and other writings by A. Roy King:
+ Please visit http://www.aroyking.com
+ Sign up to receive email updates
at http://eepurl.com/2U3Uf
The Cursed Ground
By A. Roy King
Book 1: The Child-Stealers
Year of Humankind 1576
Chapter 1

Someone else was in the forest. Boon knew it by early afternoon. In one place he found trampled
leaves and undergrowth, and in another someone had picked all the edible mushrooms and stripped a
berry patch.
He pointed it out to his father, Troth, and older brother, Ward. “Most likely a group from the
Wanderers,” said Troth, “seeking wild foods as we are. No need to be alarmed.”
Jewel, Boon’s young sister, said, wide-eyed, “Oh, Father! Do you think we might meet some
Wanderers? You’ve seen them before, haven’t you, Father?” She glanced around, her eyes alight. “That
would be so exciting! Will they dance and play music?”

Boon leaned on his heavy ash walking stick and looked uneasily up and down the trail that cut
through the cool, shady forest. To the east, the trail led back to the Till and home. In the other direction,
it headed from these food-gathering grounds into the lesser-known territory frequented by Wanderer
clans, and perhaps the occasional band of exiles. And farther out to the west, beyond this great forest,
lived other peoples––supposedly.
Boon turned slowly in a full circle, listening and watching for any movement in the forest. The
insects emitted a constant high whirring sound, small reptiles and rodents scurried through the thick
underbrush, and birds flitted from branch to branch in the canopy. All normal.
He placed his hand on his sister’s auburn hair. “Better to leave Wanderers alone, Jewel, if we meet
them at all.”
Ward tsked with impatience at his younger sister, the corners of his mouth pulled down in
disapproval. “This isn’t playtime, Jewel. You spend too much time romping around these woods like a
little chipmunk. We have work to do. Let’s get to it, so we can get back home before dark.”
Boon rolled his eyes. “Go easy on her. You’ve done little enough today yourself.” He pointed at
the gathering basket hanging lightly over Ward’s shoulder. “Your basket is barely a third full.”
Ward took a breath and was about to mouth a retort, when their father interrupted. “My sons, the
sun will set on us with nothing to take back to your dear mother if you don’t stop bickering.” He
pointed off the trail uphill to the north. “Ward, I happen to know that just up there, you will find a
clearing that has good edible greens this time of year. Kindly take your basket up there and find
something nutritious for your mother’s stew pot.”
Boon and Ward looked coldly into each other’s eyes for a moment, then Ward turned and strode off
up the hill, planting his staff angrily at each step, basket bumping against his hip.

* * * *

Troth and Boon filled their baskets and rucksacks with mushrooms, berries, wild herbs, tubers,
gourds, and edible flowers, but by late afternoon, Ward had not yet returned from the clearing up on the
hill.
Dawdling as usual, Boon thought.
Jewel ran off, following a little stream that crossed the walking trail. Boon and Troth could hear
her wading in the water and laughing, probably chasing some little fish or frog.
Troth smiled. “My little daughter is a gift from the Becomer. So alive, so thrilled with life.” Troth
glanced at his son. “I already knew your mother at that age, twelve years. They even have the same
coloring. Hair the color of the setting sun.” Troth’s voice grew dreamy.
“That light coloring sets her apart,” said Boon. “And it goes along with a light spirit.” Boon looked
at his father. “Ward scolds her too much. She’s done her share of the work today, but she has fun at it. I
think he can’t stand to hear her laugh.”
“Your brother has a serious view of life and feels obliged to help you younger ones––”
Jewel screamed, out of sight down through the trees. Troth gasped.
“Jewel!” Boon yelled. He dropped his basket and launched himself toward her voice. A moment
later, Troth too started running.
They thrashed through bushes, dodging trees and splashing through the stream where necessary to
get to Jewel as quickly as they could. They came upon her a minute later, staring down into the
underbrush by the side of the stream, her face twisted in a grimace.
Boon, relieved that his sister seemed all right, put his arm around her shoulders. “What’s the
matter, little one?”
Troth came up behind.
She pointed into the underbrush at a still, brown figure. “At first I thought it was alive, but it’s . . .”
Tears streaked her pale face.

Boon stepped forward and bent down. Flies buzzed around a dead raccoon. Boon sniffed, but it
didn’t smell of rot.
Troth hugged his daughter. “It’s all right, little one. Happens every day.”
“I know,” she said. “I just wanted to talk to it and see if it would let me touch it.”
Troth laughed. “You’re always ready for something new, aren’t you?”
“I like animals.”
“It’s not long dead.” Boon pulled the animal out of the undergrowth to get a better look. “We can
take its skin.” He pulled his bone knife from the sheath at his belt.
“Let’s go back to the trail,” Troth said to his daughter. “You don’t have to watch.”
Jewel shrugged off her father’s arm and squatted down by Boon. “No, I’m fine now. I’m sorry it’s
dead, but I want to see how this is done.” Her father and brother exchanged a glance, and both laughed.
A short while later, the three followed the stream up toward the trail, ready to go find Ward and
head home before dark. The raccoon skin hung from Boon’s hand, and they chatted as they walked.
A figure suddenly appeared from behind a large tree and stepped in front of them. Jewel cried out,
and they halted, startled.
A man stood blocking their path, clothed in a leather shirt and trousers and a woven straw hat. His
mouth drew back in a lopsided smile on a light-skinned, bearded face. An unusual red spot marred the
left side of the man’s neck, below and behind his ear, a mark like a kind of drawing, with four points in
the shape of a star. A tattoo.
“Well, isn’t this lovely,” the man said in a low voice, looking from Boon to Troth, then Jewel,
where his eyes lingered. His smile spread.
The intruder held a stick by his side, a branch that tapered from a polished handle to a heavy,
knotted tip. A weapon. This was no Wanderer. Boon’s jaw tightened.
The stranger peered at Jewel. “What do you have in your rucksack, pretty thing?” he asked.
“Gourds. Berries. Some herbs,” Jewel piped out, strong and direct.
“Well, you’ve had a good day in the forest, then, haven’t you, little rabbit?”
Troth spoke softly now, a quaver in his voice. “Are you hungry, neighbor? Up at the trail, we left
our baskets and more rucksacks. We’re happy to share.”
“Oh, thank you for offering to share, Put, but we’ve already found your gatherings.” Now three
more men stepped out from a stand of bushes nearby. All of similar appearance—ruddy, dark haired,
heavily bearded, two dressed in leather, one in rough woven plant fiber. All armed with clubs.
Boon’s stomach tightened. These men did not intend peace. They stepped closer. Uphill toward the
trail, Boon caught a momentary flash of color and a movement. Was that Ward coming through the
woods?
“I must ask you both to drop your staffs.” The leader gestured with his club at the walking sticks
Troth and Boon carried.
“You will not . . .” Boon started to blurt out, his face growing hot.
Troth placed a hand on Boon’s shoulder. “That’s all right, son. Just let it go.”
“But they can’t . . . !”
“Best listen to your old man, boy,” said the leader. His companions came up close behind him.
Troth let his staff fall to the ground. Boon gave a disgusted snort, and then dropped his as well. “That’s
good,” said the leader, smiling again.
One of his companions nudged the leader. “He has a knife, Hardy.” As this man turned his head,
Boon saw that he, too, had a red star-shaped mark on his neck.
The man Hardy shook his head. “These Put don’t think like that. To him, it’s just a tool.”
“All the same . . .”
“All right,” said Hardy. “Do as he says, Put. Drop the knife.”
Puzzled, Boon pulled his bone knife from its sheath and let it fall to the ground.
“Look at the girl, Hardy,” said one of the men.

“I saw the girl,” said Hardy.
“Red hair, light skin, well formed. She’ll bring a reward.”
Reward? What was this? Boon felt his heart pounding now. A hard knot grew in his gut. He
lowered his head and felt his hands clenching into fists. He leaned forward slightly onto the balls of his
feet.
“A reward. Yes, she will,” said Hardy. “Come here, little rabbit.” He reached out his hand to take
hold of Jewel, who gasped, eyes wide.
Troth stepped in front of his daughter. Trying to keep his voice calm, he said, “Now listen,
neighbor. You can take anything you want from what we have here. But what do you want with a child?
You must keep your hands off her.”
In an instant, Hardy swung his club and struck Troth on the temple. Troth grunted and dropped to
his knees.
That was enough. Boon hunched down and launched himself at Hardy, driving his shoulder into
the man’s abdomen. He caught Hardy off balance, and the man went down backward into his
companions, who in turn cried out and staggered back. One of them fell, Hardy on top of him.
Boon, still on his feet, bent down and wrenched the club from Hardy’s grip. He hefted it
momentarily. He knew what to do with this.

END OF EXCERPT FROM THE CHILD-STEALERS,
BOOK 1 OF THE CURSED GROUND

About A. Roy King

A. Roy King is an author living in Raleigh, North Carolina, U.S.A. The Cursed Ground is the first
story in his saga, Edhai, an historical fiction adventure series based on Biblical settings.

Connect With A. Roy King

To receive updates about future episodes of The Cursed Ground, and to keep in touch with A. Roy
King, please take advantage of the following resources:
To receive Roy’s free email newsletter, News and Updates From A. Roy King, please follow this
link to sign up now: http://eepurl.com/2U3Uf.
To visit Roy’s web site and blog, go to http://www.aroyking.com.
To connect with A. Roy King at Goodreads.com, please visit
https://www.goodreads.com/aroyking.


You can find The Child-Stealers on Goodreads

You can buy The Child-Stealers here:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Kobo


Children of the KeeperChildren of the Keeper (The Cursed Ground #2)
by A. Roy King
Genre: Historical Fantasy
Age category: Young Adult
Pages: 104
Release Date: May 5, 2015

Blurb:
An impetuous young woman named Temper serves as Captain on the rough-and-tumble squad that patrols the city ruled by her father, the Keeper of Wit. The city’s protectors must struggle ever-harder to keep order, as violence and unrest grow. On top of everything, the city is thrown into tumult when unexpected visitors arrive from far away.

“Children of the Keeper” is Book 2 of “The Cursed Ground,” an historical adventure series set in the ancient world. Set in a long-gone era when humans lived for hundreds of years and all spoke the same language, “The Cursed Ground” saga tells the story of a group of defenders who struggle to protect their communities from the growing violence in the world around them. Meanwhile, a small brotherhood is charged with carrying an unpopular message to humankind: The Creator has declared that this violent world will come to an end.


REVIEW:

  • Since this book was short so will my review.

The main character in this novel was different than other heroines which was a great factor in the book. The writing in this book was more fluid than the first. The plot was more in-depth and complicated yet funnier than the first book. The author definitely put a lot of research and love into this book which is a great feeling to have while reading a book as I have said before. The only problem I had with this book is that it felt like it was not apart of the first one and in turns it could’ve been a standalone or even a whole different series.

I give this book 4/5 stars.


Children of the Keeper
Book 2 of The Cursed Ground
Excerpt
By A. Roy King
Copyright 2015 A. Roy King
ISBN-10: 0986276413
ISBN-13: 978-0- 9862764-1- 5
By A. Roy King:
Edhai
Historical series
The Cursed Ground
+ Book 1: The Child-Stealers
+ Book 2: Children of the Keeper
Martyroi
Historical series under development
For updates on these series
and other writings by A. Roy King:
+ Please visit http://www.aroyking.com
+ Sign up to receive email updates
at http://eepurl.com/2U3Uf
The Cursed Ground
By A. Roy King
Book 2: Children of the Keeper
Year of Humankind 1580
City of Wit
Chapter 1

A woman’s shriek pierced the morning air.
Temper’s head jerked up at the sound. She and her brother Victor halted, and the seven other
Keeper’s Guards stopped behind them. The patrol had nearly reached the end of the Great Bridge,
where it gave out onto the Market Street.

Angry shouts rang out from a cluster of women and children only a hundred cubits ahead on the
cobbled street leading into the center of West Wit. On either side of the street stood trade
establishments and storehouses, some of them solid rammed-earth brick buildings, some lighter booths
of woven branches, some mere flimsy stalls sheltered by plant-fiber tent roofs.
Temper caught sight of a small, thin figure speeding away from the women, clutching a sack to its
chest. Before the dark-clad thief dodged off to the right between two buildings, she spotted silvery hair
streaming behind from under a gray cap pulled down low. Just as the thief vanished, Temper glimpsed a
flash of light blue amongst the hair.
“Snatcher!” Temper yelled, then gripped her staff and launched herself after the fleeing figure.
“Temper, stop! Let Staunch take the chase!” Victor shouted, but she ignored him and shot past the
shouting group of women. A furious voice cried something about “all of my trading spices!” One of the
children started wailing.
Temper ran to the spot where the snatcher had ducked into a narrow alley that snaked between
buildings and huts. A figure darted away down the alley. “Stop, by order of the Keeper! Come back
here!” Temper shouted. The thief glanced back, face pale in the shadows, but kept on running. The
booted feet of the patrol pounded the street behind her, but if she were to catch the fugitive she had no
time for delay. “Guts and offal!” She charged down the alley, gripping her staff. Mud sucked at her
boots.
The fleeing thief rounded a corner, but when Temper reached the corner, all was quiet. She stood
for a moment and peered ahead, listening. The morning sun still lingered low in the sky, and the close,
narrow passageway lay in shadows, but she made out a cluster of barrels, boxes, and baskets stacked
against the outside wall of a brick building.
Temper calmed herself, slowing her heartbeat and breath, as her trainer, Staunch, had taught her.
Treading slowly and quietly, she approached the carelessly stacked pile. She thought she heard a light
breath coming from the other side. A loud cry startled her, and a wooden box, shoved from behind,
flew from the top of the pile at her face. Temper deflected the flying box with her staff, but it glanced
off the side of her head. Though softened by her leather helmet, pain lanced her temple.
A figure fled from the other side of the pile, feet squelching in the mud. Temper vaulted over the
containers, but her foot caught on something, and she went down in the mud in a heap.
She scrambled to her feet, then heard a sound behind her and turned, brandishing her staff.

END OF EXCERPT FROM CHILDREN OF THE KEEPER,

BOOK 2 OF THE CURSED GROUND

About A. Roy King

A. Roy King is an author living in Raleigh, North Carolina, U.S.A. The Cursed Ground is the first
story in his saga, Edhai, an historical fiction adventure series based on Biblical settings.

Connect With A. Roy King

To receive updates about future episodes of The Cursed Ground, and to keep in touch with A. Roy
King, please take advantage of the following resources:

To receive Roy’s free email newsletter, “News and Updates From A. Roy King,” please follow this
link to sign up now: http://eepurl.com/2U3Uf.
To visit Roy’s web site and blog, go to http://www.aroyking.com.
To connect with A. Roy King at Goodreads.com, please visit
https://www.goodreads.com/aroyking.


You can find Children of the Keeper on Goodreads

You can buy Children of the Keeper here:
Amazon


A Roy KingAbout the Author:

A. Roy King is an author living in Raleigh, North Carolina, U.S.A. He is writing an historical-fantasy fiction series called “Edhai,” set in ancient times. “The Cursed Ground” is the first story in this series.


You can find and contact A. Roy King here:
Website
Blog
Facebook
Twitter
Goodreads
Newsletter



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4 thoughts on “The Cursed Ground Duology by A. Roy King Review+Excerpt

  1. Hello Allie – Thanks so much for reading “The Child-Stealers” and “Children of the Keeper.” It’s a huge help to hear a reader’s response to my stories. I just wanted to ask something. In your review of “The Child-Stealers,” you mentioned that the story left you with some unanswered questions. I’m curious. What were some of those questions? Hearing about that kind of thing could help me as I continue to write this series.
    Cheers,
    Roy K.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It was no problem reviewing your books. I had a main question which was what was the point of the raiders stealing the children with fair skin and red hair?

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks, that’s helpful to hear! That’s a good question about the abductions of red-haired children. I tried to give some clues about that, but it only gets fully understood in future episodes in the series. It has to do with the obsessions of one of the chief villains!

    “The Child-Stealers” and “Children of the Keeper” are both novella-length stories to introduce the two main characters of the series, Boon and Temper, and the conflicts they have to confront. But other readers have mentioned unresolved questions as well. I’m writing the next story as a full-length novel. I plan the whole series as a trilogy. I’m thinking that longer-length episodes will be more engaging for readers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That is a great idea! I can’t wait to see the next book. I suggest telling people in advanced if you can if it will be a series, trilogy, or duology so then people can think that if they need more to know then they will know that there is more books to come out allowing for their questions to be answered in the following book/s. Thank you for contacting me and have a great day 🙂

      Like

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