Book

Traumatized by a tragic accident at the wizardry school where he is a student, Tvrdik retreats to the solitude of the ancient forest. But his fragile peace is shattered when his old Master shows up to recruit him for a classic battle of good and evil. Tvrdik may be the only person who can tip the balance, and the stakes are frighteningly high.

If he is to succeed, he must team up with Lady Jorelial Rey, the spirited, dragon-riding regent of a kingdom in chaos, and they must convince the established powers of the land to embrace decidedly unconventional methods of winning the fight. Together with a ragtag assortment of courageous allies, including dragons, unicorns, bards, talking beasts, and one very wild water sprite, the pair set about saving their beloved homeland from a ruthless usurper, using their wits, creativity, and a sprinkling of magic.

Will hope and determination be enough for the very last wizard of Eneri Clare, and his friends, to meet the daunting challenges ahead, and set the trajectory of history itself back on course?

THE LAST WIZARD OF ENERI CLARE delights readers through the adventures and surprises of the story.

 

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ISBN 13 (Trade Paperback): 978-1-5043-5446-2

ISBN 13 (Hardbound): 978-1-5043-5448-6

ISBN 13 (eBook): 978-1-5043-5447-9


Book Excerpt

Tvrdik, in his owl guise, gazed down with satisfaction at the idyllic scene on the steps beneath him.  The next moment, an odd feeling shifted his attention.  He would never know how, in the midst of all that noise, and in a veritable sea of waving arms, he caught the one motion that seemed out of place.  It was far to the rear of the crowd, a small gesture that his owl eyes zoomed in on, a shape that did not seem to belong.  And yet, for frantic seconds he could not put a name to it.  His heart pounded as he strained to make out more.  All motion slowed out of time; he was frozen in that eternal moment of question.  And then he saw it all – the whole picture snapped into clean focus – the hooded man, bow held out before him and right arm drawn back at cheek level, a high-pitched twang, and the deadly arrow speeding over everyone’s heads, aimed straight at the heart of Jorelial Rey!  There she stood, smiling and waving, oblivious to the mortal danger that bore down upon her with terrible accuracy.  Swift as thought, the owl/mage raised his wings and leapt from his perch.  Extending his claws, he plummeted to the center of the scene below, beating his wings directly in the Lady’s face, and then shoving his powerful clawed feet against her shoulder with all his might.  Startled by the white tornado descending upon her, the Lady Regent instinctively ducked, and raised her hands in a protective gesture over her face.  Then, caught off balance, she took the full force of the owl’s attacking claws and fell to her hands and knees on the stone floor.  There were gasps and screams as those around her saw her go down. But before anyone could move, they were confronted by the vision of a large white owl, wings extended.  The great bird hung suspended for a moment in midair, and then careened backward in a tumble of feathers, as an arrow pierced its left wing.

In that split second of chaos, Lord Maygrew lowered the king to the ground and his nanny whisked him into her skirts. The guardsmen on the steps sprang forward to surround their leaders.  The lords and ministers huddled in a tense knot, instinctively drawing together in front of the child to whom they had just sworn allegiance.  The guards on the field dashed into the crowd, searching for the source of the offending projectile.  The sounds of joyful celebration transformed into shouts, wails, and terrified cries.  Rumors ran like flames through the courtyard.  Families frantically tried to find each other, while many ran for cover, fearing some foreign attack was upon them all.  Guards were pushing through the frightened mob in all directions.  And then, above all the din, sounded a blood-curdling scream and the growls of some ferocious beast.  A clearing opened near the center of the crowd, quickly widening as townsfolk scrambled to put space between themselves and the struggle happening there.  The guards arrived to find a trembling, emaciated man in torn clothing, lying on the ground, bow by his side, pinned by a giant wolfhound, teeth bared and snarling.  The man had his hands raised in front of his face, and was screaming and whimpering, begging for his life.  A captain of the guard gestured for two of his men to take the bedraggled figure into custody, and he was dragged off into the palace, the huge dog following along behind, his stern brown eyes fixed on the captive.

Meanwhile, on the steps, barely a moment after the fateful arrow struck, the great white owl had vanished.  Crumpled on the ground where it had been a moment earlier was a pale young man in a cobalt blue jacket, one arm of which was pierced through by a wicked shaft.  Jorelial Rey first looked to assure herself that the king was safe, then rolled over and was just getting to her knees when she saw him.

“Tvrdik? Tvrdik!” she screamed, but there was no answer.  Crawling to his side, she struggled to turn him over, and lifted his head and shoulders onto her lap.  Her left hand came away covered in bright blood as she tried to cushion his head while avoiding jostling the awful dart.  “Tvrdik, can you speak?” she asked him, then shouted, “Someone send for a healer.”