Once there was an island,And that island there lived a boyDemairo s life is far from easy Living on an isolated island with a father who hates him and a mother he adores, things are difficult enough without the whispering voices that cry on the wind Because this is no ordinary islandLuckily Demairo is no ordinary child, and he has some unusual friends to support him But a storm is coming, and no amount of crows, seals or shining stars can save him unless he chooses to be savedA choice is only the start of the journeySet in Roman Britain AD , Unbound and Free is a collection of four stories following Demairo across almost thirty years as he finds out where he truly belongsContains Jealousy s Shadow novella Elisud s Choice short story Unbound and Free novella The Wanderer Returns novellette Total Word Count , wordsThe Tales of the Aekhartain are about to begin Stick a feather in your hat brim and come along for the ride


7 thoughts on “Unbound and Free (Tales of the Aekhartain, Historical Aekhartain #1)

  1. Elizabeth Fitzgerald Elizabeth Fitzgerald says:

    Although the blurb calls Unbound and Free a collection of short stories, I found it better to treat them all as a single novel The first of the novellas, Jealousy s Shadow introduces us to Demairo and his family It is clear from the beginning that the dynamics between them are uncomfortable at best, so if domestic violence is a trigger for you, it might be best to give this book a miss Demairo s father, Dewydd, is an abusive drunk who likes to take his anger out on the young boy Demairo s mo Although the blurb calls Unbound and Free a collection of short stories, I found it better to treat them all as a single novel The first of the novellas, Jealousy s Shadow introduces us to Demairo and his family It is clear from the beginning that the dynamics between them are uncomfortable at best, so if domestic violence is a trigger for you, it might be best to give this book a miss Demairo s father, Dewydd, is an abusive drunk who likes to take his anger out on the young boy Demairo s mother, Lowena, does her best to shield her beloved son, but there is only so much she can do, especially when she has to keep the household running almost single handedly She gets some help from her brother in law, Elisud, who, while as sweet as his brother is sullen, does nothing to stop the abuse Of everyone on the island, it is Elisud s young daughter Ceri who has the most success in defusing Dewydd s moods, perhaps because she is too young to fully understand the situation.Of course, the cast list wouldn t be complete without including the island itself Rumours on the mainland call it cursed Only Demairo hears the voices of drowned sailors begging to be released from their torment, but his whole family feels their influence The gradual corrupting of the characters is nicely handled, particularly in Lowena Atmosphere is a strength of the novella, between the supernatural elements of the island and the tense family dynamics.History is not a strength of mine, so I couldn t say how accurate the details of the story were I wasn t convinced the story needed to be a historical one and would have worked just as nicely as a low magic secondary world.The stories following Jealousy s Shadow deal pretty directly with the aftermath of the first novella, so I won t say much about them The bulk of the second novella, Unbound and Free, had an intensity that matched Jealousy s Shadow, though in quite a different way I found the expectations Demairo s family had of him to be a little uniform for my taste, especially since they didn t seem to be based on anything concrete.Unbound and Free is intended to be an entry point for new readers into Lusher s Aekhartain and on the whole I think it works as intended There are, however, a few short scenes that new readers may find cryptic