This is the second edition of Earn Fire, incorporating Tirana as a prelude to introduce the main character, photographer and bluegrass banjo player Hubert Reynir.
The story takes him from Key West, Florida, to Scotland, the Isle of Man, Wales and Ireland, where he encounters the Norse hero Odin and his Welsh and Irish counterparts, Gwydion and the Dagda; the Scottish/Manx/Welsh/Irish teacher/trickster Manannán/Manawyddan; Arianrhod, Brigit, Fand, Iord, Rhiannon, Gwyn ap Nudd (Gwydion and Manawyddan’s son by Gwydion’s sister, Arianrhod), Gofannon, Dylan, and a host of helpers (birds, the harp Macalla, the boat Wave Sweeper, the cloak Feith Fiadha, the horse Seud, inter al.) and hordes of enemies.
The ravens Hugin and Munin wake Odin with a message from the Source of All Knowledge (the initial letters of the fore-saying spell out HUBERT):
“He will see before it shows,
Understand before he knows.
Before he wakes to find his route,
Enemies will find him out.
Rescue this endangered man.
Take him to the Isle of Man.”
Hubert survives a series of severe tests and thereby grows into a new name and awakes to a life more real than he could have imagined. Then as Hugh, he receives a fore-saying from Manawyddan:
“He will see before it shows
Understand before he knows
Guide the One who bears the Key
Half in hiding, half-revealed.”
and is flung into yet another series of initiation final exams.
Gofannon, the weapons smith for the House of Don in Welsh mythology, wakes to find that nuclear weapons have entered the world. He appropriates them and stores them in Reynir’s Luisiú finger. Reynir uses the concentrated power to save Ellan, thereby earning fire and his new name, Luis.
The magnificent cover is by Ariana Overton.
Earn Fire and Tirana were published by Atlantic Bridge in 2002 as separate volumes, against my better judgement, but when the publisher went out of business I re-published them as separate volumes in 2011. Now they are together again, as they should have remained.
Review of Earn Fire by Chere Gruver – Timeless Tales, 2003
This is a story where nothing is as it appears. This story is full of legends. I love the way that everything is tied together at the end. I also love the blending of Welsh, Irish, Scottish and even Norse legends and Gods are all intertwined. This is a story that definitely keeps you entertained as you follow Hubert-Hugh-Luis’s journey to his destiny.
Available from Amazon > Kindle Books. If you don’t have a Kindle Reader, you can download the book to your computer. Go to one of the Kindle sites and click on “Available on your PC/Mac” on the right of the screen.