When bandits seize his child, one man sacrifices everything to save her.
The most important thing in Corporal Bronwyn Darrow’s life is rising in the ranks at Aruam Castle. His goal is to be captain of the guard one day. The last thing he needs is distractions. When a woman and a child are forced into his life, tensions escalate, and he’s caught between his drive for promotion and what his heart desires.
If you love stories of adventure mixed with magic and romance set in archaic landscapes, you’ll love McGyver’s Shadows in the Stone. Unlike many fantasy novels, family plays a central part in this story, so be prepared for the hero to receive unwanted motherly advice.
Shadows in the Stone is the first book in the Castle Keepers epic fantasy series. It will introduce readers to a unique cast of characters who want to control their own destiny. Brace yourself for the ride to another time and place.
McGyver wields her pencil in a similar realm J. R. R. Tolkien and Terry Brooks released their imagination.
It is traditional fantasy of old with magic, legends, dragons and dwarfs.
The Castle Keepers: Book 1
2nd Edition Published: January 19, 2019
Paperback (ISBN: 978-1-927625-32-3; 411 pages; 6 x 9 inches) is available at
eBook (ISBN: 978-1-927625-33-0; 128,974 words) is available at
Original Published: May 6, 2012: Paperback: 978-0-9868089-6-8; eBook: 978-0-9868089-8-2
Reviews for Shadows in the Stone found at Smashwords
Review for Shadows in the Stone by Lynn Davidson at Polilla Writes
Reviews for Shadows in the Stone found at Goodreads
Shadows in the Stone Trailer
ONE BY ONE, ISLA’S SENSES awakened. The pain in her legs and buttocks greeted her first. The bad dreams dissolved into one, and she opened her eyes. The tree branches overhanging her sleeping spot blocked the morning sun but didn’t hide the ugly scowl of the hauflin who peered down upon her. She trembled, remembering the events of yesterday. He must have sensed her fear because a stupid smirk lit up his face.
She breathed easier when he walked away. Sitting up, she pulled the blanket around her. The dwarf who had carried her to a safer location still leant against the tree. He ate bread from a brown bag. He didn’t spread anything on it like butter or fenberry jam. He ate it as if a big cookie.
The strange creature which had held her by the hair and forced her to watch as the hauflin beat her granddas to death sat on the opposite side of the campsite. She shivered when she saw him watching her. In a meticulous motion, he sliced slithers of apple with a knife, placed them on his tongue and drew them into his mouth. The colour of his short, thick fingers appeared unlike anything she’d seen on a being. The putrid green resembled stains from squashed peas. His hair lay flat against his scalp as if a year’s worth of dirt weighed it down.
The eyes frightened her most. They stared at her as if gawking into her head and reading her thoughts. The cold, green eyes, like the colour of the creature’s fingers, seldom opened more than half-way. He squinted at the sun though he sat in the shade.
To settle her nerves, she averted her eyes. The dwarf had waited for her attention and held out a chunk of bread. He tossed it to her, and it bounced onto the ground. She picked it up and brushed away the dirt. After taking a bite, she nodded at the dwarf, silently saying, Thank you.
As she ate, she watched him and occasionally glanced at the hauflin. The two didn’t get along. They sat contently in their own space and didn’t make small talk. When she’d eaten the bread, a flask landed in the moss near her. Again, the dwarf made an offering. She unscrewed the cap and drank the cool water greedily.
Without warning, the water vessel flew from her hands. The hauflin glared at the dwarf and threw the flask at him.
“Keiron, I won’t let her starve.” The dwarf’s deep voice sounded fierce. It petrified Isla. “And I won’t take part in killing a child if that’s your intent.”
The hauflin leered at her as if he’d strike her. Instead, he snarled and walked away.
Her hands shook. When the dwarf leant forward and held out the flask, she froze, terrified to accept it. He nudged her arm with it, but when she still refused, he moved closer.
“Take it. Drink your fill.” His menacing expression eased, but his coarse voice remained. Then, with his back turned to the other men, it softened. “Take it.” His dark blue eyes were familiar and kind and eased her fears.
She accepted the flask and, keeping her eyes on him, took a long drink. She wiped her mouth and handed it back. “Thank you,” she mouthed. He returned to his spot under the tree.
No sooner had he settled when the hauflin approached with a dagger in his hand. He grabbed her by the hair and swung.
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Author: Diane McGyver
Diane McGyver is the author of several novels, including Shadows in the Stone, Scattered Stones, Revelation Stones, Healing Stones, Beyond the Myst, Northern Survival, and the Salvation of Mary Lola Barnes. Her short story “The Whispers of Words” appears in the short story collection The Coldest December.
Her first dystopian novel, Natural Selection, will be released October 2021.
Learn more about this author by visiting her website: Diane McGyver.