Winter Blogfest: AT Lander

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This post is part of Long and Short Reviews’ Winter Blogfest. Leave a comment for a chance to win a free digital copy of The Forest God’s Favor, book 1 in the Of Gods and Men series. 

Happy Holidays, or As the Romans Would Say, “io Saturnalia!”

Imagine waking up to the sound of that cry, the rush of excitement in your heart. Today is the first day of Saturn’s sacred festival, a week of feasting and revelry for the harvest god.

You put on a colorful, casual robe, regardless of your social status, as everyone is equal for these seven days. There are gifts for everyone in your household, clay figurines for the adults and little toys for the children. Dice are rolled and wine is poured, every goblet raised to Saturn.

Then you hear it, the parade passing by your house. Perhaps you join the cheering crowd or maybe you hang back to watch from your window, but you can see the great statue of Saturn paraded through the streets to a great square. There’s tables there and yet more wine, a feast where the rich and poor sit side by side.

You eat a hearty meal there, your cup never empty and your heart full as friends stop by to exchange gifts. It goes on and on, until the stars shine overheadand the streets of Rome are lined with expensive wax candles. Perhaps it’s time for bed?

Or perhaps not. Dark eyes catch yours across the square, a smile that goes straight through you. You blush—is it the wine, or something else? No, it’s not the wine that makes you walk towards this handsome stranger, lean in to taste the honey on his lips.

——

If that tickles your fancy, go back a few more centuries and spend your holiday in Ancient Greece with “The Forest God’s Favor”. Step out of the cold winter and into a tale of love, magic, and sensuality—guaranteed to warm your heart (and other parts) this December!

Can the love of a man heal the heart of a god?

Fertility god Anthos, a shy and gentle three-hundred-year-old virgin, has grown up in the shadow of his brutal older brother Dryas and spent his life hiding from mortals, no matter how much his nature draws him to them.

Cleon, a humble farmer who always has room in his heart and his bed, knows that Lord Dryas is angry. The crops aren’t growing, and his family is going to starve if he doesn’t give the god a worthy sacrifice—his own body. But when he reaches the shrine, he finds a very different god, the sweet, untouched Anthos.

Eager to satisfy Anthos’ curiosity, Cleon shows him what sex is…and what a relationship between them could be, with their instant attraction blooming into love. But when Dryas returns with a vengeance and Cleon’s life hangs in the balance, Anthos is forced to make a choice.

Will he bow once more before his brother’s rage, or take a stand for the only man who has ever had faith in him?

AT Lander has loved stories, both the reading and the telling, since she was a child. Born in upstate New York to an English professor and a former librarian, she now lives in the queerest part of Massachusetts. She never leaves home without a knitting project or a pencil, and she’s never met a cat she doesn’t like.

She has worked as an history museum guide, a professional storyteller, and an actress, sharing tales of what was, what could have been, and what can only be imagined. World mythology is her driving passion, as what better way to understand a people than through the tales they tell?

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