Tuesday, May 13, 2014

THE LADY OF THE HAVEN by Betty Thomason Owens



Jael of Rogan, a young healer-woman known as the Lady of the Haven, has no idea who she's pulled from the rain-swollen river when a mortally wounded warrior practically falls into her arms. Her healing skills and deep faith in God combine to snatch William, Prince of Coldthwaite, from the brink of death only to learn that the peril to his life is far from over.
As soon as William is able, Jael aids his escape through the mysterious disappearing trail. He vows to return if she ever summons him when the danger has passed. William begins the long and hazardous journey over the Touri Mountains, his heart forever bound to the beautiful young healer whose songs haunt his dreams.
Forced to flee her home, Jael remembers the Warrior's promise and races to find him in his far off land. Pursued, captured, relentlessly interrogated, her life is in danger nearly from the start. Just as hope begins to fade, Jael is freed by a band of soldiers and learns that William is only a short distance away. Their paths cross briefly as he leads his army in the struggle to defeat their foe. William departs and evil men move in once more.
Here in this strange land, amidst a deadly struggle, Jael comes face to face with a truth she never suspected. Perhaps the power she'd attributed to the haven lay within her all along. But can she, an outcast, ever hope to gain the heart of the prince?

 Jael realized she was being watched. She looked to the face of the man beside the fire. His eyes were open, observing her. She moved to his side and knelt. Would he understand her words?
“Who are you?” he asked in a weak voice.
She moved quickly to bring tea. He must have a very great thirst. As she prepared it, she told him, “I am Jael. This is Verani Haven. I pulled you from the waters.”
“How long?”
“Four days ago it was. You have very serious injuries. I have done for you what I can.”
He moved slightly and groaned. “Am I your prisoner?”
She smiled as she lifted his head in her hand and spooned tea into his mouth. He frowned at the taste. “No my lord, you are not my prisoner. You are bound in the quilts for warmth only. I will loosen them, but you must not try to rise. You have stitches in your side that you must not hinder. They may break open, do you move of a sudden.”
He frowned again at another spoonful of tea. “What is this stuff?”
“It is a strengthening tea. You will need strength. I will prepare food for you when you are ready.” She set the tea down and loosened the quilts to allow him to move. She propped him up with pillows. “I have never known anyone to survive the falls. You must be very sore.”
“I am. The falls, huh?” His eyes widened as he moved forward. “Verani? I went over the falls of Verani?” At her nod, he sat back.
“It was not your time.” Her gaze locked on his.
“Do not read my thoughts, dear lady. They are not good ones. I fought a difficult battle, and many men died by my hand. I thought my life was forfeit as well. I had no hope of salvation.”
“And yet you are here. There is some purpose for your life, my lord.”
“Do you know me?”
“Not specifically.”
“And yet you call me ‘my lord’.”
“I know of you. You are famed even to the borders of this land, my lord. I recognized the crest I found on your belongings and...I have your horse.”
He sat forward again and grabbed his side in pain. “My horse? Where? Is he all right?”
“He is safe. I have hidden him in a place where he will not be discovered.”
“He did not also come over the falls?”
She smiled. “No my lord, he followed by land, which is no easy task. Now, if you please sir, I will prepare a bit of broth for you. You must be famished.”
“I am that.” He lay back again and rested. She wondered if he had fallen asleep again, but at her approach, he stirred.
He lifted his hand to receive the cup of broth, but found that his strength was not enough even for that small task. She held the cup to his lips. “It takes time, my lord. Your injuries were grave. I thought you would surely die.”
“You must be a good healer. What’s in this tea you’ve been feeding me?”
“It is an ancient recipe, my lord, passed down from the generations.”
“So you are not going to tell me?” He looked around the room, his eyes resting on the tapestry. “Is that also passed down?”
She followed his gaze. “It was a gift from a traveler, long before my time.”
“A traveler such as I am?”
“Perhaps. Why do you ask?”
“I have seen this work before.”


Born in the Pacific Northwest, Betty Thomason Owens grew up in such exotic places as West Tennessee and San Diego, California. She lives in Kentucky with her husband of thirty-nine mostly good years. They have three grown and married sons living in the area, along with three daughters-in-law, four beautiful granddaughters, and two handsome grandsons.
Though she’d always had an interest in storytelling, her writing career began to take off in 1986. As a busy homeschooling mom, she needed an outlet for all the extra joy in the house. A few years passed, and she had several novel-length manuscripts squirreled away. After self-publishing two fantasy-adventure novels, she attended a Christian writers’ conference in Kentucky then later joined American Christian Fiction Writers, hoping to learn more about the craft of writing. Now semiretired, Betty spends most of her time writing and studying about writing, and critiquing other peoples’ writing.
Betty recently contracted with Write Integrity Press for her three-book Legacy Series. Watch for her first novel, Amelia’s Legacy, late 2014. For more information, visit her webpage at www.bettythomasonowens.com.

Betty's THE LADY OF THE HAVEN captivates from the start. Her characters grab hold and you want to stay with them to the very end. I could envision the scenes clearly in my mind and found following this journey enjoyable… ~~ Jennifer Hallmark, Amazon Review

From the first few pages, I was captured! This is a rare find! The author has a talent of weaving a tale of love, war, and family that leaves you wanting more! I classify this book as a MUST READ! ~~ BJP, Amazon Review

Betty Thomason Owens has created a masterpiece of intrigue, adventure and romance. If you love the Camelot era, you will love this book. By weaving the aspect of Christian faith into the story so skillfully, she won my heart completely. I am now a fan of Betty Thomason Owens and have already ordered book two. ~~ Sharon Coleman, Amazon Review

Why did Betty write this novel?

Inspiration! I saw the opening scene (in my head) and had an almost overwhelming desire to write it. I was a new writer, so the challenge was, could I make it as real as I’d imagined it?

Tell us something topical, interesting, funny, or something we would not expect about the writing or research for this novel.

When I wrote The Lady of the Haven, I was working full-time. As I walked in the door each morning, our receptionist (an avid reader) would want to know how much I’d written the night before.
            “Hand it over,” she’d say. I’d send her the file. She pestered me so constantly, I spent my lunch hour writing. On my way out the door, she’d ask, “What are you going to write about tonight?”
            Near the end of the book, I killed off a beloved character. It was painful for me, but it had to happen. I didn’t say anything about it ahead of time, I just sent her the pages. She didn’t speak to me for several hours.
“I can’t believe you did that,” she said before leaving. “There has to be another way. You go home and think of another way.”
            I didn’t change the scene.

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