Stella of Akrotiri: Origins
Linda Rae Sande
Historical Fantasy Romance
Immortality can be a lonely existence, especially when the world is about to implode.
For over six hundred years, Darius of Agremon has fought wars on behalf of those who needed his skills in combat. As a lechagos on Strongili, he spends his days commanding the Minoan coastguardsmen against pirates and marauders. His nights are spent alone, for despite having had wives in the past, he has watched them all grow old and die, childless, as he continues to live.
So when he senses immortality in an olive farmer’s young daughter, Darius bargains to take her to wife when she is old enough to marry.
A foundling, Stella works in her adoptive father’s olive orchard above Akrotiri, climbing the ancient trees to prune and to harvest the strings of pearls from their branches. She fears invaders when she watches flaming arrows arc in the sky, a sign the island is under attack. She worries about how the ground quakes beneath her feet and steam erupts from cracks in the ground. She wonders at the odd tingling sensation she experiences whenever Darius of Agremon is near, a sensation not unlike the one she feels when spending time in the oldest trees.
Unaware of the arrangement her father has made with the lechagos, Stella thinks she has been sold into slavery when Darius comes to claim her. Her youth has been spent admiring the man who helped her father’s olive business thrive. Now she has only contempt for him and his hard-headed manner.
While the earth trembles and a volcano threatens to destroy the island of Strongili, these two will have to forge a relationship that will last far longer than a lifetime—one that must endure an eternity and the disaster that’s about to wipe out the only home Stella has ever known.
Uncaged Review: The second book in this series takes us backwards to how Stella and Darius met. Darius meets Stella when she is a child, but senses her as an Immortal – and is charmed by the young girl who climbs olive trees.
Now this book is a bit of a slower burn and this is a pattern I’ve found consistent with this author – before I even know what’s happened, a couple hours have passed and I’ve been sucked into the story. There is no better way to capture a reader, and Ms. Sande has a special knack of doing that with her stories.
I enjoyed this story and gives us a better background on these characters and I really hope the author will revisit this world in the near future. Reviewed by Cyrene