Two New Kurval Sword and Sorcery Stories Available: The Plains of Shadow and Worm Fodder

It’s the first new release announcement of 2021. This one is for two new novelettes in my Kurval sword and sorcery series.

To recap, during the 2020 July short story challenge, I had an idea for a sword and sorcery story that would not fit into my established Thurvok sword and sorcery series, so I created a new character named Kurval, barbarian usurper turned King of Azakoria. Kurval was initially intended to be a one-off character. However, I like him and he allows me to tell stories that just don’t fit Thurvok and his friends, so it was obvious that he would show up again.

Indeed, the first of the two new Kurval stories was initially supposed to be Thurvok’s origin stories (for while Thurvok’s companions Meldom, Sharenna and Lysha have origin stories, Thurvok himself doesn’t have one yet). However, there was just one problem. The tale of the young captain of the royal guard of a lecherous king who is ordered to execute a young woman, victim of said king’s lechery, and doesn’t want to do it was simply too grim for Thurvok who is a more lighthearted character. And so I thought, “Why don’t I make it Kurval’s origin story instead? After all, we know that he wasn’t born a king.”

The other spark of inspiration for what would eventually become The Plains of Shadow was a piece of fantasy art, namely this image of a warrior confronting a smoke monster by Nele Diehl. At that moment, something clicked and the story largely wrote itself after that.

So prepare to accompany Kurval, as he confronts the dark gods and meets his destiny upon the…

The Plains of Shadow
The Plains of Shadow by Richard Blakemore and Cora BuhlertLong before Kurval became King of Azakoria, he was a guard captain in service to the tyrannical King Talgat of the land Temirzhan beyond the sea.

One day, Talgat orders Kurval to escort the condemned witch Aelisia to the Plains of Shadow and behead her, so her blood may feed the dark gods who dwell there.

However, Kurval does not want to execute the sentence, once he learns that Aelisia is innocent of the crimes of which she has been accused.

But if he lets Aelisia go free, Kurval will not only have to face the wrath of Talgat, but also the fury of the dark gods who dwell upon the Plains of Shadow.

This is a novelette of 9800 words or approx. 33 print pages in the Kurval sword and sorcery series, but may be read as a standalone. Includes an introduction and afterword.

More information.
Length: 9800 words
List price: 0.99 USD, EUR or GBP
Buy it at Amazon US, Amazon UK, Amazon Germany, Amazon France, Amazon Netherlands, Amazon Spain, Amazon Italy, Amazon Canada, Amazon Australia, Amazon Brazil, Amazon Japan, Amazon India, Amazon Mexico, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, Apple iBooks, Google Play, Scribd, Smashwords, Thalia, Weltbild, Hugendubel, Buecher.de, DriveThruFiction, Casa del Libro, Vivlio, 24symbols and XinXii.

Whereas The Plains of Shadow is a prequel, Worm Fodder, the second new Kurval story, is set after King’s Justice. Several characters from King’s Justice reappear such as Kurval’s vizier and chief councillor Izgomir and the young Count Ragur Falgune. Ragur’s bride, now wife Nelaira does not appear in person, though she is mentioned. And Ragur and Nelaira have good news.

In Worm Fodder, Kurval finds himself in a situation – slay a monster and rescue the damsel-in-distress about to be sacrificed to said monster – that Thurvok and his friends repeatedly dealt with as well, most notably in most notably in The Cave of the Dragon and The Temple of the Snake God.

However, with Kurval the basic plot plays out quite differently, because Kurval can do more than just slay the monster and rescue the girl. For as King of Azakoria, Kurval also uses his authority to outlaw human sacrifice and quite literally lay down the law to those who’d sacrifice a young woman to a worm monster.

So accompany Kurval as he is about to become…

Worm Fodder
Worm Fodder by Richard Blakemore and Cora BuhlertAfter a hunt, King Kurval of Azakoria and his entourage make camp at the village of Ogwall. However, something is not right in the village. All men of fighting age are away at a mysterious ritual and the remaining villagers are clearly afraid of something.

Kurval investigates and learns that the mysterious ritual in the woods involves sacrificing the young Celisa to the dread worm Thibunoth.

Kurval is furious, for he outlawed human sacrifice in the kingdom of Azakoria. And so he sets out to save Celisa, deal with the monster and punish those who would violate the ban on human sacrifice.

This is a novelette of 9600 words or approx. 32 print pages in the Kurval sword and sorcery series, but may be read as a standalone. Includes an introduction and afterword.

More information.
Length: 9600 words
List price: 0.99 USD, EUR or GBP
Buy it at Amazon US, Amazon UK, Amazon Germany, Amazon France, Amazon Netherlands, Amazon Spain, Amazon Italy, Amazon Canada, Amazon Australia, Amazon Brazil, Amazon Japan, Amazon India, Amazon Mexico, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, Apple iBooks, Google Play, Scribd, Smashwords, Thalia, Weltbild, Hugendubel, Buecher.de, DriveThruFiction, Casa del Libro, Vivlio, 24symbols and XinXii.

I have ideas for more Kurval stories, so you’ll see him again. As for the dark gods from the Plains of Shadow – well, they’ve tasted Kurval’s blood and they’re nothing, if not persistent, so they’ll eventually turn up again as well.

This entry was posted in Books, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *