Wednesday, February 26, 2020

The Briton and the Dane: Legacy by Mary Ann Bernal








Whispered by the wise and the learned. Talked of in hushed tones round luminous firesides. Engraved by awestruck scribes in the scriptoria of the Chronicles.  Against all the odds, great King Alfred defeated a vastly superior Danish army outside Chippenham.

This victory, the sages prophesied, would guarantee peace throughout the land. Or so they thought.

Two years later, Rigr the Bastard, vengeful and seeking to claim his birthright, was defeated in the wilds of East Anglia. His blood smeared berserker warriors vanquished; no quarter asked for - no quarter given.

Now, a further two years later, the Vikings return. Noble Prince Sven instigates a seaborne invasion, fuelled partly by blind rage when he discovers that his brother, Prince Erik, has sworn fealty to the Anglo-Saxon king.  

His own brother: A traitor and a fool.

Erik’s love, Lady Gwyneth, attempts to stop the invasion before it starts by uniting the two estranged brothers, but her scheming only succeeds in making matters worse. Indeed, her interference guarantees the death of thousands of warriors in the freezing, tumultuous North Sea.

So, when the horns of Sven’s monumental fleet of warships are heard off the fogbound coast of Britannia, King Alfred – outnumbered, outshipped and weary of the fray - must rouse his jaded Saxon warriors and lead them to sea, to repel his most formidable enemy yet.

For a host motivated by the spilled blood of the fallen, the spirit of black vengeance, and the delights of a warrior’s reward in Valhalla, is the most fearsome opponent of all.  


Alfred. Sven. Erik. Gwyneth.  Amidst the ferrous reverberation of a battle royale - one or all must die, and the fate of a nation hangs in the balance, one final time.




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Monday, February 24, 2020

Spotlight on History Enthusiast Jon Marshall – actor, director, producer - History Roadshow




Jon Marshall has been interested in cinematography since his early years, having been a member of an 8 mm club in his home city of Sheffield, Yorkshire. His artistic expression in film and an insatiable love of history led to the creation of History Roadshow, providing video tours of English Heritage and National Trust properties showcased on YouTube.

Initially, chosen locations held personal memories of past visits, but public interest expanded his vision to include the myriad of sites throughout the United Kingdom. His membership with English Heritage and the National Trust gave him access to every location in the country, comprising a large catalog of famous and not so famous places of interest.

Recently, Jon decided to leave directing, embarking on an actor’s career to narrate the series personally. His work includes Conquest, Crown, and Charter. A trilogy of videos starting with the reign of William the Conqueror through that of King John and Magna Carta.

Jon’s latest endeavor includes another trilogy of videos, The Six Mothers in Law of Henry VIII.


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Thursday, February 20, 2020

The Briton and the Dane: Birthright by Mary Ann Bernal




Two years have passed since Alfred the Great successfully defeated Guthrum, King of the Vikings.

The fair land of England is at peace. That is, until the harmony is threatened by Guthrum’s angry, vengeful, illegitimate son, Rigr, who is hell-bent on usurping his father’s throne.

Rigr demands his Birthright – an acknowledgement that he is the sole heir to the Danelaw, but his father refuses his claim. Rigr assembles his army; a motley, but formidable, cohort of disenchanted warriors.

Fearsome Guthrum, ruler of everything from Kent to Northumbria, is made aware of the threat and conjures his forces, meeting the rebellious host on the field at Thetford. 


Thousands upon thousands of bloodthirsty warriors confront each other on the sunlit, windless plains of East Anglia. The victors will rewrite the course of history, and the fate of England is in the hands of the gods of war.

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Sunday, February 16, 2020

Spotlight on actor, director, and author John Reign



John Reign began his career in the music industry, branching out into all venues of the entertainment business after touring the country for MCA Records. His experience with TV and film production led to the founding of Polestar Studios, where he currently serves as CEO.

Originally hailing from Oswego, New York, John and his wife, Rowena, currently reside in Sharpsville, Pennsylvania.


Some fun facts
You may or may not know

John was an Elvis impersonator for MCA Records.


A successful professional magician, John almost died doing Houdini's Water Cell Torture stunt. 

John owned a string of nightclubs in New York.

Grimmets Magic Forest was originally written over thirty years ago to help his son fall asleep.

 John and his wife have raised thirteen children. 


Coming Soon

Polestar Studios award-winning film, Finding Purpose: The Road to Redemption is scheduled for release later this year.





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Tuesday, February 11, 2020

The Briton and the Dane by Mary Ann Bernal




King Alfred the Great has thwarted the Viking threat against his kingdom of Wessex. Signing a treaty with the formidable Danish King Guthrum, he succeeds in pushing the heathen army back to the rolling fens of East Anglia.

An uneasy peace holds sway: The King establishes a standing army under Lord Richard, who takes command of the citadel at Wareham.

Richard and his army are accompanied by his daughter, Gwyneth, an impetuous and reckless young woman – at once striking, intellectually gifted, but dangerously vain and imprudent.

While Richard broods on the Viking threat, Gwyneth falls in love with an enemy prince - only to discover that she has been betrothed to a Saxon warrior twice her age.  

Refusing to countenance her grim fate, she flees the fortress, but is soon kidnapped by a Viking warrior and taken to the camp of King Guthrum while Saxon search parties scour the land.  

In captivity, a hostage to fortune, and the focus of political intrigue, Gwyneth is submerged in a world of expediency, betrayal, and black treachery. Slowly, she realizes the truth is suspect, nothing is what it appears and her reality cannot be trusted. 

And all the time, against this background, she desires nothing more than to be reunited with her dashing Danish prince.

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Saturday, February 8, 2020

Scribbler Tales Presents: Escape from Berlin - a multi-genre selection of short stories by Mary Ann Bernal





Scribbler Tales Presents

Escape from Berlin
Mark Dresdner’s cover is blown, forcing him to flee East Germany, yet he refuses to leave the woman he loves.  Finding the border crossing blocked, and the enemy closing in, will he evade capture or be forced to make the ultimate sacrifice?


Featuring

Betrayal
Aelia gives herself completely to the man she loves, revealing a life-threatening secret, trusting her husband unconditionally, but is he deserving of her trust?

Deadly Secrets
Lysandra seeks a new life in America, hoping to forget her past, but an accidental meeting with a man who knows her true identity endangers her happiness.

Murder in the First
As judge, jury, and executioner, Bethel decides the fate of the man responsible for her plight, but things go terribly wrong and the predator becomes the prey.

The Ritual
Devona’s initiation into a modern-day pagan sect on All Hallows’ Eve sends the terrified young woman fleeing for her life amidst a raging storm. Escaping the sacrificial altar, will she survive the tempest?




Saturday, February 1, 2020

Crusader's Path by Mary Ann Bernal available for pre-order






From the sweeping hills of Argences to the port city of Cologne overlooking the River Rhine, Etienne and Avielle find themselves drawn by the need for redemption against the backdrop of the First Crusade.

Heeding the call of His Holiness, Urban II, to free the Holy Land from the infidel, Etienne follows Duke Robert of Normandy across the treacherous miles, braving sweltering heat and snow-covered mountain passes while en route to the Byzantine Empire.

Moved by Peter of Amiens’ charismatic rhetoric in the streets of the Holy Roman Empire, Avielle joins the humble army of pilgrims. Upon arrival in Mentz, the peasant Crusaders do the unthinkable, destroying the Jewish Community. Consumed with guilt, Avielle is determined to die fighting for Christ, assuring her place in Heaven.

Etienne and Avielle cross paths in Constantinople, where they commiserate over past misdeeds. A spark becomes a flame, but when Avielle contracts leprosy, Etienne makes a promise to God, offering to take the priest cowl in exchange for ridding Avielle of her affliction.


Will Etienne be true to his word if Avielle is cleansed of the contagion, or will he risk eternal damnation to be with the woman he loves?