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    A. L. Sowards

ISBN: 978-1639932467

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Beneath a Crescent Shadow (The Balkan Legends, #1)

by: A. L. Sowards

After an arranged marriage, Konstantin and Suzana must find a way to meet the demands of a conquering Ottoman sultan amid a torrent of setbacks and dangers much closer to their Balkan home.

The Balkans, 1373
A devastating battle claimed the lives of Konstantin’s father, uncle, and most of their Serb army, leaving him to rule as a vassal of the Ottoman sultan, a role he is wholly unprepared for. Between war, famine, and a persistent band of brigands, Konstantin is nearly bankrupt. He will need to find a wealthy bride to marry if he is to have any hope of saving his lands and securing his future.

A betrothal to Suzana, the daughter of a prosperous merchant, is soon arranged, and upon meeting her, Konstantin immediately feels hope that their marriage could someday grow into love. Yet, from the moment of Konstantin and Suzana’s betrothal, enemies threaten their lives, outlaws prey on their lands, and the terrors of Suzana’s abusive past haunt their fragile new relationship. As this onslaught of threats closes in, the two face challenges that will test their love, their faith, and their hope to save their people and win their freedom from the heavy weight of Ottoman oppression.

“Sowards has penned this captivating first novel in what promises to be a thought-provoking series on the Balkan wars between the Serbs and the Ottomans. … Extensive research shows in the evocative descriptions of the land, its people, and its culture, [which] are interwoven seamlessly into the storyline. … Turkish characters are skillfully included to show the various aspects of Ottoman rule. They add depth to the story. The novel provides historical background on the conflict between the various ethnic groups in the former Yugoslavia. Highly recommended.” –Historical Novel Society

Meet the Author
A. L. Sowards is the author of more than a dozen historical novels, with settings spanning the globe from the fourteenth to twentieth centuries. Her stories have earned multiple awards and other honors. Sowards grew up in Washington State, spent a few decades in Utah, and now resides in Alaska with her husband, three children, and ever-growing library. She likes hiking and swimming, usually manages to keep up with the laundry, and loves it when someone else cooks dinner.
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