Publisher: Shivnath Productions (2019)

A young woman with more power than she realizes must confront the greatest evil in her cosmos in this richly conceived fantasy by Elana A. Mugdan.

In Book I of The Shadow War Saga, Dragon Speaker, we met Keriya, a teenage girl who went from being “nameless” by nature of her low social status to being given a new name of high honor – Keriya Soulstar. Book II begins as she and her friends Roxanne and Fletcher and her faithful dragon Thorion are relaxing in a Galantrian infirmary. With the vile shadow demon, Necrovar, destroyed, Keriya and Thorion can play and rest while Roxanne recuperates from her injuries.

Keriya, in fact, has never had it so good. She now has fast friends and allies, is regarded with great adoration by ordinary folk who see her as a magic-wielding warrior and has gained the respect she did not have in her early life. And to make matters even sweeter, there is a handsome young man, Max, who wants to get to know her a little more.

Imagine the surprise when she is summoned to be tried for treason.

Guided with telepathic messages from Thorion, Keriya answers her accusers and is acquitted, putting her archenemy General Tanthflame in the hot seat. It stands to reason, if she has told the truth, he must be the traitor. Now she must go to Noryk to meet with Lady Adelphia to testify in Tanthflame’s trial.

The night before her departure, Keriya has a vision. In it, she meets with Necrovar and the great spirit Shivnath from whom she derived her ability to do battle with the hateful shadow beast. Her vision clearly shows that although Necrovar is weakened, he is by no means eradicated. Keriya must abandon her peaceful niche and join the struggle against this evil once again.

Is she equal to that task? And where is her magic sword? Before her questions can be answered, Thorion is attacked and wounded, and flees, leaving no doubt where Keriya’s duty lies.

Author and filmmaker Mugdan has devoted much of her time since adolescence to constructing this grand tale of dragons, demons and a heroine who scarcely knows or understands her own powers but acts with faith that she can conquer the dark forces besetting her world.

Mugdan’s writing is charming and confident, revealing an expansive and delightful use of language. Also tucked neatly in this volume, Mugdan introduces Valerion of the Unknown Lands who has sworn to destroy Necrovar with a mystical spell and an enchanted sword. A possible love interest? Readers may expect to know more of him and his connection to Keriya in Book III, already planned for release.