Thursday, July 26, 2012

Past of a Marked Man by Jennifer Hirtler

This amazing Author has graciously offer her remarkable book "Past of a Marked Man" as The Midnight Promotion at  for Friday July 27, 2012. 

The Midnight Promotion is a great opportunity to promote awesome Indie authors and their works. Below is the the review for her book from Amazon and the links to found out more about this week's starring Author with all the qualifications to be a traditional published book but promotes in the Independent Author's Circle, so check her books out and see for yourselves, it will be worth the energy to discover a treasure and a chance to win a copy. Just like her Amazon link below and above link to show your interest and  join in on the fun.  

In the author's words:

"They hated me for the crime of another. They ran out of fear for a spectre. They betrayed me for a mark on my skin. They had nothing to fear from me, but I decided that I would see that fear be put to use. If I could not live my life honorably without being reviled, then I would not. If they feared me, I decided, they should have a reason. No ghost, no spectre, no name was going to be the cause of their hatred for me. I would give them something to fear that had a name. I would give substance to that spectre. I would give fangs to the monster they perceived. I knew at that moment that I must avenge my parents, but furthermore, I knew I must avenge myself. To achieve these goals I would do what I had been putting off for a long, long time. I would become the thing I hated most of all. I discarded the name Herod on that day. I was no longer Herod Basiv.  I was, and I am, Kagnos".

The above paragraph is from the book; this is a great story, it is so active with imagination and captures the reader's attention. The saga of the assassin's  life,  Kagnos and the High Priest's Zunna and  Mitchell the Priest who is given the assignment of being a recorder sent to record the story of a the most fearful man in the land, The highest assassin that ever lived. He was rumor to be a murderer with no soul or consciousness, and lived in the most abomination of a city full with thieves and murderers who were society’s throw always.  No one in regular society would acknowledge this man and the residents, he and they were considered the scum of the land and were fear. 

As commander of this city, he lived his evil reputation but there was a thread of consciousness and compassion underneath his tough exterior and only a few selected know the real man and warrior.
In the story the Priest Mitchell was assigned as a recorder of the assassin's life and has to unraveled the skeletons in this man’s closet. On the journey across harsh lands and friendly places he slowly comes to the truth of discovered the true skeletons in this killer's closet, some dead and some still living and he is stunned by the truths that are unveiled in the darkness. 

He is on a mission for the high Priest and Goddess and no obstacle from thieves, no shelter, to his friend almost losing his life unless they locate a true healer with the right portion in time and other exciting adventures will not stop this undefeatable young warrior to complete his assignment. 

On his assignment he discovers Kagnos was hiding for he was a wounded child of parents murdered by assassins and he was marked with their symbol and was the last one surviving the brutal execution; Society shunned and fear these marked individuals and ostracizes them with disgust and hatred; The only one was willing to accept the marked abandon child and rise him in the sanctuary was the high Priest Zunna .  He was hidden and protected and at a restless age decides to venture incognito into society but his secret was manipulative out of him by the charms of a wicked woman.

Kagnos realizes the secret will be unveil and he has to run for his life to protect himself and the ones he loves from the assassins hunting for him and all that surround him, to not be executed brutally too. 
On his journey, events and incidents occur that sours Kagnos against humanity and he in defeat he decides to live his life as he was labeled as a wicked individual, later to rise as a ruthless leader with laws for his kingdom. He had his heart broken and turns towards the darkness to escape but with the plot of revenge boiling behind his hatred towards the murderers of his parents and many others. 

There is such depth and insight in this story. This author weaves in Greek mythology and the Goddess and Gods as the powerful beings guided and leading the characters’ lives and beliefs.  She speaks of conscious and unconscious themes that all humanity lives by, sometimes in the darkness and other in the light. The choices one makes to decide which path they are to journey and what decisions need to make which affects not just themselves but many others. This reader believes forgiveness is the theme running throughout the pages. This is a very entertaining story of fantasy and adventure. .

If you as a reader enjoy Greek mythology plot with murdering assassins and skeletons in the closet that need to be taken out of the dark and brought forth into the light then this tale is calling for you to open the cover and become lost in an amazing world of betrayal and forgiveness. 


Format:Kindle Edition
To be honest the Past of a Marked Man is the first fantasy I have ever read. I guess somewhere along the line I got it into my head "fantasy" would be boring to a died in the wood mystery/thriller buff like myself. The truth is I was hooked on this story from the first chapter right to the very last page.

The story begins with a mystery assignment when Mitchell, a young Priest in the Temple of Serit'ha is asked to go on a mission to make an account of the life of one of Serit'ha's sons. From his very first encounter with the stranger Mitchell realizes this is far from an ordinary man, and there is more to this mission than he's been told. Even as the shocking truth is revealed and his own life is threatened, he is repeatedly drawn back to the dark house, and the mysterious man as the intriguing and brutal story of his past unfolds.

While there are few innocents in this story, one cannot help but recognize the humanity and profound sadness as well - but there is also hope, great strength, courage and even humor. One reason I enjoyed this story so much is that there are so many different layers and life lessons, but probably the greatest lesson is that people are always far more complex and interesting than we give them credit for ... if only we would take time to learn.

I'm so pleased I found this book and this author and I am looking forward to future adventures for Mitchell

Format:Kindle Edition
Past of a Marked Man is a compelling tale, for it combines a brutal fantasy with a tender heart.

In Ms. Hirtler's vividly imagined universe of Tavigoth, no more wretched hive of scum and villainy can be found than the city-state of Kuz, whose kill-or-be-killed ethos has filled it with assassins, thieves, and criminals. Into this foreboding landscape steps the gentle narrator, Mitchell, whose superior at the Temple of Serit'ha has charged him with the task of interviewing the scary and violent man, Kagnos, who once ruled Kuz with an iron fist. Like those Russian dolls that open to reveal more dolls within, this interview, in turn, leads Mitchell to venture into the surrounding countryside of Tavigoth, where interlocking quests and stories-within-stories unfold to reveal a complex and richly imagined portrait of a people and place wholly unreal, yet, at the same time, completely believable.

Marked Man hits a steady note of verisimilitude right off the top. Too often, a fantasy like this will devolve into a jigsaw of magical machines. Ms. Hirtler, though, maintains a steady hand on the fantastical elements, relegating magic potions to a vocation, wizards to a minor subculture, and anthropomorphized flora and fauna to a single forest. Like the skilled storyteller she is, Ms. Hirtler establishes a solid foundation for her characters' actions.

This is crucial to the moral center of this story. With the plethora of slayings, butchery and mayhem rife in Kuz, the author paints a fine line between the principals' external evil and their intrinsic goodness. In one character's words, "Papa says not to judge a man until you've run from his demons." In Kuz, of course, there is plenty to judge; indeed, everyone gets what's coming to them. However, Ms. Hirtler creates a stunning moral paradox via her actors. Despite their crimes and violence, they're not bad people.

Like the old fellows of the old Tolkein quest stories, I found myself, over the passage of time, relating to Kagnos, Mitchell, Cherryl, Vera, Zunna, and the others as though they were my old friends. In such a story as this, it would be easy to devolve into two-dimensional characterizations, but Ms. Hirtler, to her everlasting credit, makes all her main characters sympathetic. "There was Kagnos, with his awful life of rejection and ridicule and then there was Cherryl, a sensitive guy caught up in the world of assassins."

This is further amplified by Marked Man's interview format. Through several points of view, the story gives us a 1st person account from these characters' lives, letting your mirror neurons bounce around in their heads for both good and bad. "I was being told these amazing stories of death and torment, being inspired by the characters. But I got to meet the characters." For instance, it was a thrill to live vicariously through the title character Kagnos, as he takes down the regime of his predecessor, Illix. I don't want to spoil the plot, but this is one of the great revenges I've read.

Without doubt, Ms. Hirtler has a bright future ahead of her. Although she is a young writer, already she has produced an epic debut, and added to her oeuvre with another short story from Tavigoth. I am sure that Marked Man is just the start of a prolific career, and I look forward to her next book.  (Book page)

1 comment:

  1. As of 8/1/12 this book is rising in the ranks on Amazon, it is a very entertaining stimulating Greek Mythology story that blows a reader's mind. Very insightful and read the reviews and see for yourselves.

    Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,919 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
    #38 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Fiction > Fantasy > Epic
    #49 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Fiction > Fantasy > Contemporary