The Veil – Review – CFFC

I’ve been giving myself a break this summer and taking advantage of Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge. I really enjoy CFFC, and I like being able to participate with photos only. However, this week I’m bending the rules – Cee, you knew it had to happen – and combining the challenge with a blog post I’ve been working on for a while. First the challenge:

“This week our topic is celebrating things that Would make a friend happy. There are endless possibilities for this week. Have fun and don’t forget to smile along the way.”

I am hoping the post I’ve been working will make my friend Teagan Geneviene happy. When I first started reading “The Veil – Journey 14” which is Teagan’s latest (and final) installment in her “Dead of Winter” serial, I was taken back to the very beginning. On page 1, there’s a reference to “Osibide’s empty cottage.” I think that was one of the capture points for me – a point in the early days of the story where I knew I was hooked. Osabide was my first favorite character. She was later joined (not displaced) by her niece, Zasha and then many others as the journeys took Emlyn away from her father and her family (who were willing to abandon her), to a world of magic and wonder. In addition to the physical journeys, Emlyn was on a journey of self-discovery.

Knowing I was at the end of a series I had been reading for a year and a half, I was hoping to see some of my other favorite characters. I didn’t have to wait long. Gethin, one of my favorite characters, appears in the first chapter, and even though I remember him well, I learned more about him in this Journey. I think that’s the remarkable thing about this epic story – I am still learning things about some of Teagan’s characters.

This is particularly true of the main character, Emlyn, I learned more about the power she had. The power and powerful weapons the Deae Matrres possessed, and the knowledge they possessed. A key thread in this amazing tapestry has been the value of knowledge, and that resonates well with me.

I followed Emlyn as she stumbled through the realm of the dead, as she rode in the company of the Deae Matrres, and as she became more confident in the abilities from which she could not hide. Her confidence grew slowly during the early journeys, as she was being prepared for the battle only she could face – the task only she could perform. Teagan brings readers into the epic fight, the struggle for which we had been waiting. Assembled alongside Emlyn are the many characters I had met along the way.

No spoilers here, but everything about this final journey seemed right and wonderful to me. Teagan’s characteristic strength of description is evident, as it has been throughout the story – as it is every time she shares her stories with us. She connected the dots for me, she answered the questions that had formed along the way – some as early as January 2021. Her characters acted as I expected they would – as I knew they would!

As many others have mentioned, in a way, I am sad to see the journeys end. I’ve never read anything like “Dead of Winter.” High fantasy is not a genre I would have ever claimed to be interested in, but this story held my attention from the first chapter of Journey number one. In a discussion with another blogger, I joked that “I enjoy the genre of Teagan.” I also noticed that Teagan left many possibilities for future stories to come from the realm of the living, and perhaps a visit here or there to the realm of the dead. I look forward to those if Teagan presents them.

If you were following “Dead of Winter” but haven’t read “The Veil” yet, I invite you to click on the universal purchase links listed ahead of my own shameless marketing block. If you fell off one of the Deae Matrres’ wagons along the way, visit Teagan’s announcement post which includes universal purchase links to all the Journeys. The Journeys are easy to read and the story will draw you in and hold your attention as it did mine.

I have a few more photos in the gallery that should make Teagan happy, and a few that stretch the definition of ‘friend’, but I think they meet the challenge Cee gave us.

Journey 14, The Veil
Kindle:  relinks.me/B0B41FF3FX
Paperback:  relinks.me/B0B3RVHG1S

“Knuckleheads,” the 1st book in the Dreamer’s Alliance series, is now available on #amazon!

If you like speculative fiction with a bit of snark, you will enjoy this book. Order here.

78 comments

  1. I’m not sure you are stretching the definition of friend. Those squirrels are con artists, for sure, but I’d say they are certainly your friends. It’s squirrel heaven there: a woodpile to hunker down in and peanuts for the begging. Yep, friends.

    Liked by 2 people

    • We do enjoy seeing them. I think that qualifies them as friends. One time, we didn’t get the box of peanuts off the porch in time after it was delivered. They started working on opening it. That’s how I know they’d feel good about seeing that bag.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Lots of things here to make and keep friends happy. Peanuts by the pound. Water by the gallon, in containers placed on the ground for all to enjoy. Clover left unmowed. Old Glory flying proud even though the sun makes her look faded.

    You’re a good friend Dan, to humans and critters alike, so it’s not surprising you have so many friends. I’m happy to be one of them!
    Ginger

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks Ginger. These little guys have been tormented by the heat. We have a robin that lets us know when the water level in the stone bird bath is too low. Then he sits on the fence while we rinse and fill and then he’s back in. I’m glad so many people like seeing the flag because I always feel like snapping a picture.

      Like

  3. I love that you put the planter base and bird bath with water on the ground for all of your furry and feathered friends. You and the Editor are good champions of the neighborhood critters. ❤

    Have a wonderful, smile- filled week, Dan.

    Liked by 1 person

    • We learned about the bird bath the hard way. Between whatever dog we had at the time knocking the top off or the squirrels up-dumping it trying to get in, we realized it was better on the ground. We wanted to get an extra bird bath last year, but there were none to be found. Supply chain issues, we were told. That’s when I bought the big planter bases. They work fine, and they were a lot cheaper than a cement bird bath. The bunnies love those because they are so low to the ground, and the little birds like them because they aren’t too deep.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Ha! Billy from the Family Circus would be proud of you, Dan! I think all the critters are going to spell out “Friend of Nature’ in peanut shells in your back yard. Act surprised! Now that the outside cats are inside cats, I can probably put out bird seed. Cats will go nuts watching the birds and squirrels tangle with everything.

    Liked by 2 people

    • MuMu goes crazy watching the birds on the ground. She looks at us like, “Why aren’t you doing something about them?”

      I don’t know how Amazon’s Kindle app works for organizing. I wanted to get them in numerical order, but nothing seemed to work. It’s a wonderful read.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Gasp! Dan, I’m honored that you did this post and chose Dead of Winter. I can’t imagine anything that would have made me feel better than this. I’ve made vague mentions at my blog that throughout this month I’ve been struggling even harder with PTSD issues. To me, this lovely, mindful post is a big deal — so much more than the “random act of kindness” sort of thing. And it came at the right moment. I believe you’ve done more “good” here than you realize. Thank you for being part of the Journeys of “Dead of Winter.” Especially, thank you for this post. Hugs on the wing.

    Liked by 2 people

    • This was my pleasure, Teagan. I totally enjoyed Dead of Winter, and the whole series is on my “inspiration” shelf in the bookcase next to my desk. I’m glad I could help spread the word.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. A wonderful review and perfect in every way. I remember your comment and I agree. There is a genre of Teagan, and her fans would follow her no matter where she chooses to go. And one thing is for sure: with Teagan, you might know where you’re leaving from (or think you do), but you never know where you might end up.
    I join your recommendation to anybody who hasn’t read the series or missed any episodes.
    Thanks, Dan, for reminding me of how I felt as well, and good luck with your writing and your novel!

    Liked by 2 people

    • We love having these guys visit our yard, and we do everything we can to make them feel good here. I walk to the Veterans Memorial everyday (weather permitting) and I smile when I see the flag.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. What a cool post and wonderful tribute to Dead of Winter. The serial novel is high fantasy (sort of) and epic fantasy (um, yeah), but it’s mostly Teagan’s unique and enjoyable creations on paper. Great review!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Excellent post. I’m sure you made Teagan HAPPY!
    Dan, I don’t make it here often, but t is always a pleasure when I do.
    Ha! You are never long out of my mind, as many I follow post Thursday Doors.
    Incredible how many participate in your Doors challenge.
    Thank you, and be well!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Osabide was my first favorite character, too. I could imagine living in the cottage if it weren’t for those dangerously backward neighbors. The Dead of Winter has a good blend of adventure, suspense, hope, and perseverance. I’ll be picking back up with #12 after I finish Knuckleheads which I’m enjoying. Seeing your collection makes me envious. I’ve been reading Dead of Winter on my kindle, but it might be nice to have the paperbacks.

    Liked by 2 people

    • JoAnna, I’m so glad you are a part of the Journeys. Osabide’s cottage was one of my favorite locations. I put so much thought into it, that the layout, the kitchen, the hidden “lookout tower” inside the chimney, the secret room that opened to the cave… It was a very real place to me. I’m happy you enjoyed it.
      I was a holdout about converting from print to Kindle, but I find that I like my Kindle very much. I change the “book page” to a barely-there color, which makes it easier on my eyes. And of course, I make the print bigger. Although the paperbacks give me a tangible copy of the book covers…
      Thanks for reading and commenting. Hugs on the wing!

      Liked by 2 people

  10. Hi Dan, this is a wonderful post about our friend, Teagan. When you said Teagan’s genre I understood completely because her writing does seem to stand alone in its uniqueness. I am looking forward to reading the last few journeys next month.

    Liked by 1 person

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