It was the 1990's... and time after time, I'd see these bold, vivid covers splash themselves across bookstore windows in Manhattan, New York City, on my way to, or back, from work ....
(Geodyssey series: A magnificent 4-book epic of danger, desire, triumph and tragedy, this is the story of humanity itself. Through the eyes of the protagonists we experience humanity's greatest achievements, and witness its greatest shame, the relentless exploitation of nature that now threatens our very survival.)
Alas, often in those days, contrary to my deep interest in socio-biology, archaeology and history, novels were a luxury I could not afford, yet I could not resist their lure, for I had already read the one shown below, STEPPE (first published in 1976)
(Based on actual Asian/Turkish history. Alp, a brave and dynamic Turkish warrior, of the Steppe, is hurled into the future of 2332, where history is reenacted in an intergalactic game to educate and entertain enthusiasts about the great nomadic tribes of the Asian empire. Alp must participate and hopes his knowledge of the accounts, people, and strategies of the era might help him score high enough to survive afterwards.)
So, on separate occasions, I spent the equivalent of a week's lunch money -- I didn't eat much in those days :-) -- bought and began reading almost immediately, in the subway (the #7, from the Grand Central Station to the boondocks of Queens, and imagine a rush-hour ride in one of those cars!).
The information he offers at his website
for readers as well as writers, be they struggling or successful, is extensive, and I must say, very generous.
Generous for he is one of the hardest working, busiest authors on this planet, a hardy septuagenarian and a mighty Don Q'xiote as he tackles the arrogance of publishers and the socio/political establishment in general. I am very grateful and not a little flattered that this very busy and iconic author has made the time to read and comment on my novels.
So, here is what he said in his December, 2006, newsletter:
>>>>I read two books by Kristina O'Donnelly, www.kristinaodonnelly.com portions of her Lands of the Morning series. One was Andromakhe, about the wife of Hector of Troy, who turns out to have had quite a history on her own. I don't know how much was historical and how much was conjecture, but if we take this at face value, she was captured during the fall of Troy and made the mistress of the son of Achilles, bearing him several sons. When he died she was able to return to Anatolia (modern Turkey) and begin restoring the remnants of the Trojan culture. (Andromakhe) ... a grim, hard-hitting story showing the subjugation of women that was and still is standard practice in much of the world. Then Trojan Enchantment, actually an earlier volume in the series, about Olivia Hayden, a contemporary American librarian, who visits Turkey and is romanced by a handsome Turkish professor of archaeology Dr. Somer Berk. So this is essentially a Romance, but clothed with impressive detail relating to the descendants of survivors of Troy, admixed with some intrigue as she is suspected of possessing a valuable smuggled artifact. So I would call it Romance Plus.>>>>>
Thank you, Master Piers Anthony! I feel like my all-time favorite professor just declared me a valedictorian and took me out for an ice-cream banana split with everything on it.May Clio, your lovely and loyal muse, always stand by your shoulder and whisper in your ear.
Respectfully yours, Kristina O'Donnelly