|cover by Kim Narenkavicius, from an 11th c. Beatus|
A thousand years ago in Spain, Islam and Christianity collided over the lush lands that once were Al-Andaluz.
Princess Zaida was a pawn, plucked as a prize of war from the palace of the poet-king of Sevilla. She sacrificed her name, her faith and her family in a single day to make a marriage of deceit with Alfonso, the passionate Christian king of Castilla and Leon.
As Doña Isabel she was kept in a cell at San Facund, the cold monastic heart of Castilla and Leon -- a delightful toy for the king, and an affront to Abbot Bernardo, an ambitious Frenchman determined to purge this "Moorish whore" from his holy fiefdom. Left alone while the king went to war, Zaida learned to be wily as a bishop in order to survive -- and eventually to disappear.
Years later, hidden in a remote cloister, Sister Mary Isabel wrote her story in documents that were hidden for centuries in the stones of a mountain monastery -- documents that became "The Moorish Whore."
Based on a true story, spiced with poems and tales from the golden age of Islamic Spain, "The Moorish Whore" is a sweeping adventure from a place and time almost lost to history.
The day finally has arrived! After much time, effort, fun, and money, The Moorish Whore, my first published novel, is now posted to Smashwords, Amazon Kindle, and Barnes & Noble. Within 24 hours or so, she´ll be available for download to e-readers of all makes and models. And soon as I can find a graphics person willing to take on the relatively small but rather onerous task of making a paperback cover, Zaida will debut in real book form, on Amazon CreateSpace´s "print on demand" platform.
For a mere $5.99, you can have a Moorish Whore of your own, conveniently folded into your e-reader or splashed across the screen of your Mac or PC or Android!
Her story first appeared online about six hours ago. I told everyone on Facebook right away. A lot of people hit their "Like" buttons. Five people downloaded a free sample. One person actually bought one! Woohoo!
If I was a wily electronic author I would have a book-related website all set up and ready, with instant links to places to buy the thing, maps, pictures, and lots of links. I really like that idea, but I do not know how to make it happen, and I don´t have any IT wizards nearby to do it for me. (It´s hard enough getting a book cover done up!)
Still, I have a big FB network, and I have this blog, and I have you, my faithful few followers. If you like this blog I very much hope you will read this book -- I am very proud of it, it is one of the best bits of writing I have done, ever. And if you like the story, I would ask you to write a short review, telling why, on Amazon or Smashwords or GoodReads. Especially on GoodReads! So I guess I oughtta get over there to GoodReads and start spreading the Moorish Whore around, eh? So to speak!
Meantime, while you wait for the paperback release, you can get one of the first downloads by clicking here.