An Ogham Wood
Cliff Seruntine, Avalonia Publications
Sweyn De Seud is a sad somewhat broken man with great reserves of inner strength. He will need those reserves of inner strength for the adventures and fate that lie inwait for him. For Sweyn the sea and his boat have always been a way to escape his problem and worries and find serenity. One fine day Sweyn decide to take the Starry Sea his sailboat on a ride that will get him lost. And lost he gets as a violent storm takes his boat off course and blows him to an island somewhere off the coast of Canada.
Throughout the story Sweyn is constantly experiencing flashbacks. In his dreams he is back together with his deceased wife, who used to make heavenly teas drawn from her esoteric knowledge of herbs. But Sweyn never knows where she obtained this knowledge from. In fact he knows little about her past. She came from an island that she strove to get away from and never talk about. She owned a cottage on this island near a city called Man of the Sea. The cottage is called Dundobh.
As fate would have it this is the island that his deceased wife Eilwen escaped from and left behind. Being shipwrecked in his wife's former home Sweyn finds himself thrust into the midst of a society seeped in the ways of the old world. Pagan holidays like Beltaine and Samhain are still practiced and celebrated. Herb lore , cheese making and ale making are a fine art. Sweyn , however will find out that his more than just a visitor. Marrying Eilwen made him an O'Shee. A special fate or geas awaits him.
The past comes alive in this book both for Swayn and the people of Man of the Sea. They were a group of people dedicated to the old ways in cooperation with the faeries moved from place to place until Manan the Celtic god of the sea lead them to the island. Dylan O'shee was their leader. Coppin who takes care of Dundobh and Oak Peg rule in the absence of an O'Shee they are also the advisers.
While on the island Sweyn must contemplate a future that can either lead the island to ruin or salvation. The people of Man of the Sea need a laird and lady. Can and will Sweyn rise to the challenge.
Both the island and Sweyn have a tortured past. Seeyn a burned out psychologist, who being a born healer has had to go against his grain when dealing and with and helping criminal elements. Criminal elements that impacted his life with Eilwen. He is also a son who took a different path from his father.
Eilwen's famiy past also has ghosts in the closet and not so pleasant secrets. These secrets impact the history of the island and it's future. The story was perfect it was exciting, riveting and it kept you glued. It was also long enough as well. The story is seeped in fairy lore and wisdom. For those who have a love of the old Celtic ways then this book is a must read. I hope to see more from this author.
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