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Monday, April 25, 2011

The Doe and The Dragon by Andrew Richardson

Andrew Richardson and I have been longstanding critique partners, which should be no surprise to those of you reading my blogs. Despite our very different styles, and what were initially very different genres, our authorial personalities seem to mesh, probably because we both are willing to do some heavy lifting with our writing muscles and try something different while the other serves as a spotter to be sure we don't drop a fifty pound barbell on our chest.

We don't love everything each other writes (his horror stories give me nightmares, and my childbirth scenes make him queasy and uneasy), but objectivity and tough love prevail. The Shoot has long been one of my favorite of his erotic shorts (see why here) and his upcoming release The Doe and The Dragon threatens to unseat it.

I've seen this novel from the first draft to the final one, and loved it. If, like me, you have always been intrigued by Arthurian legend and lore, there is no better place to begin—before it all began—with Andrew's rendition of how Uther Pendragon, the man who would father King Arthur, met his mate.

A shade less bloodcurdling than most of Andrew's supernatural horror novels Andraste’s Blade and The Wood, this more traditional fantasy has it all—sword and sorcery, witchcraft, prophecy, gallantry, vengeance, and epic battles all presented with as much historical accuracy as possible for a time, place, and people swathed in the cloak of mythology.

Andrew describes The Doe and The Dragon as a novel which “follows the north Welsh version of sixth century legends. These stories place national events in a local setting and so give a distinctive Welsh flavour. […] Other ‘non-Arthurian’ characters appearing only in the local legends and have been incorporated into this work. As with any story set in the ‘Arthurian’ period, no matter which sources are used as an inspiration, part of the writer’s job has been to uncover characters about whom little is known, and to flesh them out in the way that makes them real.”

The Doe and The Dragon will be published May 1 by Rogue Phoenix Press. Connect with Andrew on Facebook or on his blog 

Conflict of Interest and Financial Disclaimers: I have received no compensation, monetary or otherwise, for this review. This review has not been submitted, nor will it be, to any established review organizations of which I am a staff member.


  1. This sounds like something I'd like to read. Those centuries between the fall of the Roman Empire and the Norman invasion of Britain, have always seemed to me to be the forgotten era of history. Dark and mysterious, and therefore intriguing and exciting!

  2. I am really looking forward to this one. In the past Andrew has used his knowledge of history as a strong anchor for his work. As a fan of Arthurian fiction, I am delighted he is doing his own take on the legends.

  3. I've always appreciated Andrew's attention to detail and research. I'm looking forward to seeing his latest adventure into the UK's history

  4. Thank you Carole for posting this, and to others for your comments. I agree with Botanist - this period was missed out when we did the rest of British history at school so I had to read about it myself, which I think made it feel a bit more personal. Add Arthur, Merlin and others into the mix and I was hooked!