THE SHAVA SAGA

 coming soon:
A THREE-BOOK FICTION EPIC—
of soul-piercing struggles
for courage and endurance,
for love and loyalty…

Book 1
One Day
a Warrior

Book 2
The Sound
of Seven
Thunders

Book 3
A Thousand
May Fall

 


My aim has been this:
storytelling on the grandest scale,
with characters and themes to match… 

THE TIME: nineteen centuries ago…
in an age of clashing empires and clashing gods.
THE PLACE: harsh borderlands [today’s Syria and Iraq]
being fought over by that age’s two greatest nations.
The archenemy powers of Rome and Parthia revel at their apex of might
and mutual hatred—while their national fates are astonishingly and intricately linked to three people caught in a complex interplay of closeness and separation:
⋅⋅⋅⋅⋅⋅ a free-spirited young Parthian noblewoman
captured and enslaved by Romans (after the
battle-death of her husband, Parthia’s greatest
military hero);
⋅⋅⋅⋅⋅⋅ her captor, Rome’s most illustrious general,
a man of extraordinary insight whose deepest love
is for the genuine honor in Rome’s legacy (the steady
erosion of which he fiercely fights);
⋅⋅⋅⋅⋅⋅ and the Parthian woman’s only son, a youth
of beautiful bearing and prodigious skill—born
into Roman slavery, yet growing up captivated
by the pride and pomp and glory of Rome’s legions,
much to his mother’s grief. Tragic and traumatic
circumstances will thrust him as a young man
into a raging civil war in Parthia where all sides
stake a life-or-death claim on his future, as he follows
a sacrificial path for the sake of the woman he loves—
and the friend who betrays him.
PRESSING UNCOMFORTABLY upon their lives—and upon a colorful host of supporting characters—are competing religious forces in that strongly religious age:
⋅⋅⋅ the tired old gallery of ancient Roman gods;
⋅⋅⋅ the thriving and enticing mystery cult of Mithra the Bull-Slayer;
⋅⋅⋅ the alluringly powerful Magi of the East;
⋅⋅⋅ and an upstart rabble movement worshiping
a crucified Palestinian teacher.

In The Shava Saga, I’ve pursued
spirited and intricately woven portrayals

of strong-willed characters striving
for freedom, 
for father-love,
for fulfillment of their powerful dreams,

and for a viable faith that measures up
to life’s raging realities.

 ◙  ◙  ◙
[ See: reader endorsements for THE SHAVA SAGA ]
[ See: one reader’s reaction to THE SHAVA SAGA ] 
 ◙  ◙  ◙

“Take new courage, allow no fear;
one day we may find it pleasant to look back
and remember this affliction.
Through untold dangers, countless twists,
our path still leads onward.”

—Virgil, Aeneid, I


* Soldier illustrations above by French painter Jacques-Louis David—
TOP: a pencil study 
for a section of David’s masterpiece “The Oath of the Horatii”;
FURTHER DOWN: detail from the finished “The Oath of the Horatii”

 

 

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