I was notified today that, due to a mildly disgruntled comment on this very website, OakTara has chosen not to publish any more of my Keeper series. Since I was waiting for them to respond one way or another, I’m glad to hear this, but I have this ominous premonition that I’m blacklisted as a troublemaker in the sight of all publishers everywhere. Oh, well. I’ll wear the label proudly, if wear it I must, and stick with self-publishing.
To search for a new publisher or not to search is a perpetual question at the back of my mind. Self-publishing isn’t a road to wild and giddy success for someone with my personality; I’ve accepted that fact. I’ve already discovered that I was mistaken about the nature of working with a small publishing house. Big publishing houses, where one expects to fall between the cracks, are shut tight against long-shot stories like mine. One might say I’m writing for a select audience, and for the task of entertaining that audience, the parameters of self-publishing are adequate.
Enough about the discouraging world of publishing. Have you heard of the Keeper series? More properly, it’s called the Last Book of the Kings series. If you want to categorize this series, it falls somewhere between Lloyd Alexander’s Prydain Chronicles and the Narnia series on the fantasy fiction spectrum. Each book chronicles a different piece of the Keeper ruling family’s history, beginning with Owen and the aged queen mother Morena in The Keeper House Unending. The next generation takes over in The King’s Brother, though Owen and a few others from the first book still have a role to play. Third in the series, Liar’s Sanctuary, which has been out of print for a few years now, is currently in revision for an early-2013 release date. It takes up the problems between the Keepers and some of the ruling aristocracy from other clans, left unresolved at the end of The King’s Brother, with the burden of resolution falling on the third generation of the royal family and their companions.
But who are the Keepers? They acquired their name because of an ancestor, chosen by a powerful immortal to preserve the knowledge of the Other World in the mortal realm. Every Keeper has a court seer, and from time to time a special champion endowed with immortal powers will emerge to guide the Keeper kingdom through increasing troubles. An overwhelmingly evil immortal has laid traps throughout the world, preying upon the unwary. His insatiable hunger drives him to seek to devour all the world. It falls to the Keepers with their ancient knowledge of the Other World to defend the human race against him, even as this same immortal struggles to break out of his prison.
Have you read part of the Last Book of the Kings series? Leave a comment below, telling us what you think of the stories!