Ashley is the author of SHADOW FOX (2010 Novel of the Year by Champagne Books), FOX RISING, NIGHT OF THE FOX and IN BYRON'S SHADOW. She is also a published playwright, and staff writer for fantasy-faction.com. She lives in Phoenix, AZ with her husband and daughter.
Jared Dunefaellan, Captain of the king’s standing army, has managed to carve out a name for himself. After several victories, he is feared and respected, and is about to reclaim Wiekken’s most prized city, Lleweyan. But he is running out of time; already his genetic disease is maturing, changing him into the hateful man his father became. Before he can win the war, however, he’ll have to first conquer his addictions of alcoholism, sexual dysfunction and extremely distracting feelings for his best friend. In the meantime, Tarika is being forced to wed a tyrant, and Nathaniel reveals a shocking secret that throws their world into chaos. Everything comes to a head on a pirate ship of all things, and the prophecies surrounding Jared and Tarika play out in surprising, and occasionally disastrous, ways.
At the age of twenty-one, Nicholas Price has the world at his feet. He has just graduated from Oxford, he is heir to his father's title and fortune, and he is about to meet Ada Byron, the daughter of his idol Lord Byron. His life falls apart, however, when an attempted elopement with Ada ends in disaster, resulting in his disinheritance. Destitute, he takes up residency in his mother's country estate, which is on the brink of ruin.
Ten years later, now a cynical misanthrope, Nicholas receives a visit from Catherine O'Reilly. Catherine once assisted Nicholas in obtaining access to Ada, and as she has also been cast out by her father, she has come to Nicholas for shelter. Catherine has been raped and is pregnant, but refuses to name her rapist. Nicholas agrees to take her on as a maid, but focuses all of his attention on winning Ada back. It is his eccentric brother James who can see through the submissive servant to the fiery, passionate woman within.
When more encounters with Ada end badly, it is Catherine who opens Nicholas's eyes to see how far he has taken his obsession with Byron. It is also she who helps him nurture his poetry, and to see the blessings around him in spite of his financial ruin. Soon Nicholas cannot resist falling into a love triangle involving Catherine and James, all of them unaware that the secret Catherine is harboring is about to shatter the fragile world Nicholas has managed to forge.
In this sequel to Shadow Fox, after waiting his whole life to return home and learn who he really is, Jared quickly discovers his world is much more complicated than he ever imagined. As the newly appointed Captain, he is now responsible for raising an army to take on an enemy he knows next to nothing about, while his own king anticipates his failure. With his love life is in near shambles, he must now win Tarika back in spite of a romance blossoming between her and his closest friend, Nathaniel.
Just as things begin to improve with the victory of their first small battle, Jared’s childhood sexual abuse is brought glaringly to light, leading to obsession and dysfunction. As if the disease in his blood were not bad enough, he will soon jeopardize everything he holds dear to feed this demon of the mind, even going so far as to fall victim to a dangerous affair with an enemy princess.
Jared Bruin doesn’t know who he is. He remembers nothing of his early childhood before the age of seven when he was abandoned in a park in St. Louis, left in an unfamiliar world that terrified him. He knows only that he is driven to learn everything he can about swordplay and sixteenth-century combat.
Almost twenty years later, as he is battling a heroin addiction, suicidal tendencies and a violent affliction he doesn't understand, he is hired to teach swordplay to an enigmatic woman with secrets of her own, who somehow provides a link to his past.
Then a missing journal arrives that provides many answers to Jared’s past, and in it another world is revealed, one of a Goddess, prophecies, elves, a devastating love triangle, and a war in desperate need of a hero.