The Sword to Unite

The blog of the fantasy epic, The Sword to Unite

Lay of the Lore: The Areni Isles — August 21, 2017

Lay of the Lore: The Areni Isles

To the southernmost point of Yennen, lay a set of islands known for their beautiful landscape and dark past. The Areni Isles have been the jewel of the southern lands for centuries as a landmark hub for any maritime commerce between the western and eastern halves of the continent. Founded by Bandabras of Barbany, a famous explorer of Lyrielian, or blood of elf and man as it is known. he sought to liberate himself from the shackles of his liege lord and so declared the Areni Isles as an independent kingdom.

Bandabras was a tall man, with a wide frame. His beard was blood red, stretching down to his chest in curls. Revered and despised by the same people, he lived larger than life, filled with ambition and a drive like no other. He set sail for Areni with a host of twenty warships, nearly five thousand men, women, and children followed his promise of a new life.

The islands were populated by a small native population that migrated there centuries ago, whom many scholars believe came from the south of Tanaria, a kingdom closest to the islands. Each island was divided amongst the native people, with no system of unified government. Bandabras was clever, deciding to win them over with diplomacy, rather than steel. At the Summer Isle, he arranged an alliance with the local king, marrying his daughter, Helia Fane. Soon, Bandabras had brought all the islands to heel.

His first actions as king of all of Areni was to assimilate the populations of his Lyrielian allies with the natives, adding the language and codified law systems of Lyriel while keeping the religion, known as Afel, the Lady of the Sea. Bandabras made it a key point to show the power of his people, building massive stone palaces and castle on each island so his legacy could outlast even his dynasty. When it came to his succession, Bandabras committed his greatest mistake, a mistake which haunts Areni to this day. Bandabras legitimized his three bastards, giving them each an island, leaving his trueborn with only the Summer Isle. As he lay dying on his bed, surrounded by sons readying their levies for war, Bandabras supposedly shouted, “to the Strongest!” as his final breath

Bandabran, the only trueborn son, isolated himself on the Summer Isle, shoring up his defenses and taking counsel from his mother Helia, who grew paranoid of plots by the bastards of Bandabras. The Isle of Calto, where the Autumn Palace resides, was taken by Thyngen, strongest and tallest of the brothers, most in appearance like their father. Melos, the island of the Spring Palace, was granted to Arioto, known for his good-natured spirit and diplomacy, born from his father’s affair with a Tanaric courtesan. The Comet, home of the Winter Palace, a dreary place of storms and rocky terrain where little grows, was given to Nasirian the Shadow, given the nickname tauntingly by his brothers for his bitter sulking at feasts and fairs.

Since their inheritance of the islands, the brothers’ descendants have warred with one another for the coveted title of King of Areni, though none have claimed the title, instead, they are locked in stalemates of bloody and costly warfare.

Thanks for reading, and as always, be sure to subscribe for more content!

-Peter

Hadrian I “The Great” — June 6, 2017

Hadrian I “The Great”

The noblest of any rulers of the world, Hadrian was a warrior like a raving berserker, a poet of silver tongue, a statesman with the golden touch, and above all, the founder of the Nacian Empire.

Born the youngest bastard of the Erastrian king Adémar III, Hadrian was never destined for greatness. His father was a terrible ruler, and the last of his line. Adémar sunk his treasury into grand building projects left half complete and wild parties which lasted weeks on end. After his assassination, the very same noblility who killed him were entrusted with his harem of lovers and children. All were slain, save Hadrian and his mother Dulia, a revered figure in Nacian history. Bribing her way through the kingdom with jewelry given by her dead king, she ensured her son’s survival and exceptional education.

By his sixteenth birthday, the young man had amassed a sizable host of mercenaries and courtiers, all while the Erastrian Kingdom collapsed to ash. Hadrian was a bearded man, though he never had the sizable frame of his father. Of average height and size, Hadrian was no less fierce or brave in battle. Hadrian arrived on the southwest of Yennen, where he conquered the small village of Nacia, and declared himself imperator. Hadrian granted new land rights to noble and commoner alike, securing key support for further conquest of the region. A just man, Hadrian also established a codified law which rivaled the bureaucratic level of his ancestors the Erastrians. He completed great works of architecture in his capital, such as a new aqueduct and a new library some thousands of books full. By his death in the year 66 2E, Hadrian was 75 and left a great number of sons to continue his dynasty, which to this day enjoys the title of king in the new Nacian Kingdom.

This is the first in the series describing each of the Nacian Imperators, let me know what you guys think below in the comments and be sure to subscribe!

Physical Copies of The Sword to Unite now available! — May 6, 2017

Physical Copies of The Sword to Unite now available!

The soft cover copies of The Sword to Unite are finally available from this link here, be sure to order your copy and leave a review on amazon or any of the other websites linked. This physical version of the book is 462 pages long and includes two maps, one full page, and another spread, as well as three of the coats of arms previously seen on the website. It has been such a tremendously awarding experience to see the book finally for sale, and I hope you all enjoy it!

What to do after writing your first book — May 5, 2017
The Sword to Unite E-Book Released on Amazon! — April 30, 2017

The Sword to Unite E-Book Released on Amazon!

After nearly a year of writing and rewriting, I am pleased to announce The Sword to Unite is finally available on Amazon for purchase as an e-book! Check it out here! Be sure to leave a review and any comments on amazon or the blog. Furthermore, I’m pleased to say a physical copy of the book will be available sometime in the second half of May; 462 pages in total! To conclude, I want to thank every one of my followers, it has been such an exciting and fulfilling process to finish this project. Be sure to check out the book!

The Official Map of the Book! — March 20, 2017

The Official Map of the Book!

Here it is, the full map of The Sword to Unite. This map uses roughly fourteen separate maps finally combined to show the whole world of Morthwyl, Yennen, and Erastrius. It is my hope I’ll be able to make specific blog posts about different areas of the map, their geography, history, and culture.

On the four corners, the artist has placed the coat of arms of a few of the most important kingdoms and households, including Crawe, Thorne, The Eternal Dawn, and The Nacian Empire.

It has been such an incredible experience to see the change in my ideas for the book and the maps throughout the process of writing the book. It feels like a real accomplishment to finally see it done in such detail and design. This map, as well as the poster, will be available in full resolution in the future. Be sure to leave a comment and like, and don’t forget to subscribe for more content!

 

The Official Poster of the Book! — March 18, 2017

The Official Poster of the Book!

Check out the new poster for The Sword to Unite. Set in the city of Wulfstan, the capital of Lorine. Seen on the docks are Cedric and Olaf, the captain of the city guard. In the background, Adalgott’s Palace. The stone jutting out of the castle is the rock on which Adalgott prescribed the first codified set of laws in the north. To the sea, the ancient lighthouse of Stormwatch Keep, which has guarded the city against coastal threats for thousands of years.

As an author, it is such an incredible experience to witness a scene I wrote transmuted onto art. During my first posts on WordPress, I never would have imagined I would be able to release my book onto Amazon, it has been such an incredible experience which I’m so glad to have shared with my subscribers! For me, art has always played such an important role in my writing, it’s a bit of an odd confession, but I’ve always had a soft spot for the classic although somewhat cheesy animated style of the original animated version of The Lord of The Rings. Knowing a piece of art, such as film or painting, comes from a passion one has for the literature it originates from has such a huge impact on me.

This has been such an incredible life experience, one which I think has shifted my focus on writing for life, if for the sake of passion. Again, thanks to everyone whose supported the blog, wouldn’t be here without you.

-Peter

 

 

The Map of the North — March 1, 2017

The Map of the North

Another great piece by Piere. This is the map inside the book. It started out as a rough sketch hanging in my room, and with Piere’s help it became a true work of art. If The Sword to Unite does well enough, I intend to do more stories with other parts of the world currently unmapped.

Leave a comment, like and subscribe!

Note: Image is copyrighted by Peter Hopkins, all rights reserved.

The Cover of The Sword to Unite —

The Cover of The Sword to Unite

Here is the official cover for the paperback version of The Sword to Unite. Done beautifully by an artist on 99designs, Piere d’Arterie, I highly recommend you check out some of his work.

It was a great experience to see the cover come to life the way it did. As you can see in the background, the various coat of arms can be seen on the banners behind, a really nice detail. The sword is also a great focusing piece of the cover, and exactly how I imagined it in the book.

 

Note: This image is copyrighted, please feel free to contact if you would like to learn more.

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