~ Trekking through Time ~

Joyce Holt

author of historical fantasy and science fiction

~ Historical Fantasy ~

~ Available on Amazon,    in trade paperback and Kindle ebook formats! ~

cover of Troll and Trylleri

Troll and Trylleri

In the troll-haunted mountains of ninth century Norway, three young women guard their secrets.

~ The lovely one, a king's daughter, plots treason. ~ Her maid, unwilling pawn of the Norns, lays plans to flee her headstrong, sharp-tongued mistress. ~ The third, an ugly goat-herder, masquerades among the human folk of this high mountain dale, hiding from her own monstrous kin.

In TROLL AND TRYLLERI, the low-born maid drops her plans for escape when an ogre seizes the king's daughter. She plunges into the Otherworld after her mistress, armed with nothing but her own wits, the goat-herder's advice, and a magic key.

"An exciting, interesting story with a great heroine and a compelling quest. It also evokes the world of Norse mythology vividly. I believe fantasy readers want very much to be transported to another world, and this author has done that...

"I like the richly detailed world, and the writing is beautiful. This could potentially be a book I'd read multiple times."

~ critique by a judge in the literary contest of PNWA Writers Conference, 2015

~ Available on Amazon,    in trade paperback and Kindle ebook formats! ~

cover for Hero's Shield

Hero's Shield

book 1 in the Tapestry of Cumbria series

Otherworldly creatures prowl the wildwoods that cloak the Isle of the Mighty. Rome once claimed this land, calling it Britannia, but they fled decades ago.

Native Bryts rose again to power. Across the mountains and moors now rule thirteen kings.

No longer thirteen. Twelve. Eleven.

Unknown to those in the west, two kingdoms in the east have fallen to Angul hordes -- invaders who hunger for even more land.

Blocking their path into the mountainous west stands one headstrong young woman -- Gwen ferch Draig, daughter of heroes, nimble of foot and tongue, confident of her prowess with the sword, revelling in her parents' legacy of courage.

But among the first invaders comes a ruthless sorceror wielding magic stolen from the Fair Folk. How can Gwen defend her folk when stripped of every strength and skill?

Publisher's Weekly* calls HERO'S SHIELD:
"A tale of fantasy in which magic, folklore, and history are seamlessly interwoven."

* Publishers Weekly is a major international news organization
specializing in the field of book publishing and bookselling.

(Quote from a 2013 review of the book in manuscript form)

HERO'S SHIELD, the first book in the historical-fantasy series TAPESTRY OF CUMBRIA, was a finalist in the fantasy/science-fiction category of the literary contest at PNWA writers conference 2012.

~ Available on Amazon,    in trade paperback and Kindle ebook formats! ~

cover for Brigand's Blade

Brigand's Blade

book 2 in the Tapestry of Cumbria series

One trek to Caer Luel, three tasks to tackle, two lives and the fate of the whole kingdom at stake -- Gwen of Raven's Crag aims to make quick work of the quest.

Gwen doesn't count on crotchety wisewoman Teg attaching herself to the journey as guide, nor on the shape-shifting riverhorse trailing her into the lowlands, nor on the snobbery of townsfolk still proud of their Roman heritage -- and scornful of rustic Brigands down from the mountains.

BRIGAND'S BLADE, a time-slip novel, weaves in a tale from three centuries earlier. Of mixed parentage, Aria is too Roman for the Bryts and too Brytish for the Romans. Her mother's kin, freedom-loving mountain Brigands, gird themselves to rise in revolt against the noble civilization of her father. A clash of cultures, a battle of virtues. Aria must choose one side or the other, but the choice tears her heart.

"This is a treasure house of Welsh research. The supernatural creatures we've all heard of are so well presented, as well. Lovely story!"

"Adults and YA readers will love this book!"

                    ~ PNWA literary contest judges

BRIGAND'S BLADE, the 2nd book in the historical-fantasy series TAPESTRY OF CUMBRIA, was a finalist in the fantasy/science-fiction category of the literary contest at PNWA writers conference 2014.

~ Available on Amazon,    in trade paperback and Kindle ebook formats! ~

cover for Vagabond's Dagger

Vagabond's Dagger

book 3 in the Tapestry of Cumbria series

Desperate to solve a nightmare riddle, Gwen and her companions skulk through lands recently stolen from the Brytish clans. They must evade ruthless Angul slavers, a monstrous serpent from the realm of the Wild Ones -- and now a goorach. The reeking ogress keeps appearing on their trail, and each time gleefully wails the name of one soon to die.

The hag hasn't yet called the name of Gwen or her companions. How long will that last? For the vagabonds traipse deeper and deeper into peril.

Listen! The names now cried by the goorach belong not to a few weary travelers but to the Thirteen Kings of the North themselves! Their golden age comes to a close.

"The third in the series had me captivated again. Love the imagery, characters, stories within the story. Each in the series works as a stand alone, but I bet you cant resist reading more.

Recommend to anyone who enjoys a good tale, adventure, myths and legends from the past, reading to children, a feisty female and a page turner."

                    ~ reader J.C.


~ Available on Amazon,    in trade paperback and Kindle ebook formats! ~

cover for Smith's Hammer

Smith's Hammer

book 4 in the Tapestry of Cumbria series

If you're so foolish as to stray into the Otherworld, take great care to eat nothing, to drink not a drop -- or when you return to your own realm, you'll find yourself whisked far from your own time.

Wandering adrift in the ninth century, Gwen and Trystan find no trace of their kin. Norse refugees have taken over the mountains of Cumbria.

Gwen burns to push further, to seek any lingering remnant of the proud boisterous clans who once ruled the heights.

But autumn deepens toward winter. Trystan wants to shelter with the Northfolk until spring. And each day they linger, his roots sink deeper into the Norse way of life.

"Well written, great story line. Loved the characters and their dilemmas set in a past world. Great."

                    ~ reader J.C.

SMITH'S HAMMER, the fourth book in the TAPESTRY OF CUMBRIA

~ Available on Amazon,    in trade paperback and Kindle ebook formats! ~

cover for Minstrel's Staff

Minstrel's Staff

book 5 in the Tapestry of Cumbria series

The passages are closing between the worlds.

Magic is fading from the realm of mankind, though peril still swoops from the skies.

Cast ahead through time once more, Gwen and Trystan travel a road fraught with danger. Another wave from afar has swept over the Isle of the Mighty. Haughty new conquerors hold rule over the land. The lore and glory of the Bryts has faded almost from sight.

Torn apart by the tides of war and exploitation, Gwen's only hope to escape and make her way back to Trystan lies in giving up a secret she vowed never to reveal.

MINSTREL'S STAFF, the fifth and final book in the TAPESTRY OF CUMBRIA

Get the Kindle ebook series for only $9.95!

collage of series covers
Click to go to Amazon series page for Tapestry of Cumbria

panorama illustration of books in the series Tapestry of Cumbria

~ Science Fiction ~

~ Available on Amazon,    in trade paperback and Kindle ebook formats! ~

cover of EPITOME


book 1 in the Phoenix Afire trilogy

What can you do when you suspect you're being misled?

What can you do when you feel utterly alone, when everyone else has a soulmate to cling to, but not you... when even your closest friends ahve no clue why you feel the way you do?

What can you do when you see the approach of doom, and everyone else takes it as a cause for celebration?

In the science fiction novel EPITOME, Desti of Pitera seeks to take back her own destiny, no matter the cost.

"An original, exciting, action-filled science fiction plot, plausible and meticulously planned."

~ critique by a judge in the literary contest of PNWA Writers Conference, 2003
where a novel excerpt placed as finalist in the science fiction/fantasy category

~ Available on Amazon,    in trade paperback and Kindle ebook formats! ~



book 2 in the Phoenix Afire trilogy

Burning to avenge the murder of her beloved great-grandparents, Merica infiltrates the ring of corrupt scientists responsible for their deaths -- tainting her own reputation along the way. Then naivete trips up her idealistic scheme, and her expose backfires.

One step ahead of grim retribution, Merica flees for her life, leaving behind the only world she has ever known -- the interstellar lightship Phoenix.

In the science fiction novel PERIHELION, Merica tries to salvage the situation on the terraformed planet Cresh, but every effort meets with disaster. Have all her sacrifices been for nothing?

"Outstanding, inventive and fascinating... quite plausible, extremely natural and realistic... marvelous characters... scientific references are incredible...

~ review by a literary contest judge at PNWA Writers Conference, 1994