‘The small village of Willow Down burns. Flames of unending appetite eat away at inns, shops, and homes; not one building on Main Street or the outlying expanse escapes. A Thick, gray smoke clogs the air, filling the sky with clouds of dancing ash. I cover my mouth with a bloody rag and try to ignore the bitter taste of soot that fills my mouth and nose, though my eyes sting more from the heat of the unbridled inferno than from the smoke. Mounds of smoldering flesh, once living residents of Willow Down, rot in the street. Large birds circle high above, waiting patiently for the fire to die so their feast can begin. “Myra,” someone calls my name. Gradually I begin to advance down what was once Willow Down’s Main Street. “Myra!” The echoing voice becomes more insistent. I quicken my pace, causing the heat-dried mud to crack beneath my worn black boots. I feel the breath of the fire seep into my black leather shirt and breeches. The naked skin of my face and hands turns from pale white to red and begins to blister. Still the voice pulls me onward. “Myra!” In time I reach the center of Willow Down and stand before the largest of the carrion mounds. “Myra, I wait for you, my daughter,” the voice flows from the dead.’
In The Salvation of Tanlegalle, Author Tim Ahrens created places of make believe, both past and present. Through his imagination he has brought these places to life through his creation of characters, both human and not so human. The story above is called “Death and the Widowmaker.” Within this story, the Widowmaker is out to track down Masterson before he destroys other villages and the people within. In “Catherine’s Prayer,” Catherine is being held prisoner for being a witch. And one of my favorite stories titled “Sassafrass One Seven Four” is the tale of a robot who just might be a bit human. Each story has it’s hero and heroine with each fighting for the same cause – justice. Will they succeed?
There are 12 short stories in The Salvation of Tanlegalle, each made up of its own characters but in the end Ahrens has written one last chapter which amazingly brings all of the stories together. I enjoyed them as individuals and really enjoyed them as one.
Forward by Piers Anthony
Illustrations by Eric J. Turman
Lucid Style Author Services
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