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One wants to think that it could happen to them, as easily as it did the character in the novel - but mixing martial arts and the dark ages? Not to mention Harding had to go that extra bit further and add time-travelling immortals to the mix. I wasn't buying it, and neither should you. It seemed almost unbearably painfully so that the author was just pressing together things she happened to like a whole lot, into a novel that had nothing in the way of a pleasing cohesion of themes if it was sophisticated enough for themes, which I doubt in any case.

Please, aspiring authors out there, write what you love - but not like this And one last thing. They don't just welcome them into the fold. No matter how many small, insignificant facts about history you threw into that tripe, it doesn't make up for the fact that it's just not right.

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I almost want to change my rating from 2 to 1 star, but there were small things that I admittedly, would have liked better if they were better written, elaborated on, and plotted out more enjoyed. Mar 26, Juliette added it. Let's just say I was glad I didn't buy it at full price. I mean I didn't read the book properly I did a mini translation in my mind when I read it. I'm sorry, but the dialect used when she visited the past drove me nuts!!!!!! There are Okay There are definitely better ways to portray that she wasn't in modern day world so to speak The different dialect made it a difficult read I would also like to say that somehow whenever I think about this book the author Diana Gabaldon and her Cross stitch series somehow come to mind Maybe it's the whole going back in time and marrying some very powerful man, and falling in love with him and having his child Don't get me wrong, I did enjoy it a little Apr 06, Sheridan rated it it was amazing Shelves: romance , fantasy , adventure , time-travel.

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Sep 28, Carmen rated it it was amazing. One of the best on my bookshelf. I read this trilogy about once a year and I still love it, the characters, the history, the mysticism. Nov 08, Steph rated it really liked it. Let me start by saying this is very different to the kinds of books I've been reading recently. My partner is a big fantasy fan and has been pestering me to read it for a while, so when I left my book behind on a weekend together he handed me this in an instant.

The writing was jarring at first, it felt clumsy and clunky, and I was rolling my eyes at the simplistic spelling it out and telling rather than showing approach. But I struggled on, and found that somewhere around the page mark I Let me start by saying this is very different to the kinds of books I've been reading recently. But I struggled on, and found that somewhere around the page mark I was really invested in the plot and enjoying it.

Where am I? I wish the prose was richer to make this a 5 star read, but I don't really think that's the point here. This book had me up late at night reading "just one more chapter" to find out what happens. I didn't have to think too much. I could just enjoy, and I did.

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  • Aug 20, Pauline added it Shelves: read-in-high-school. I don't think I can actually give this any stars. I'm far too conflicted lol. I read this when I was It had a wicked strong female lead, magic, time travel, castles, romance, martial arts It was like a shopping list of all of the things I found kick-ass as a kid, so of course I lapped this up.

    Ancient Future Trilogy by Traci Harding

    But is the story and writing actually any good? Probably not. However it did fire up my imagination, and push me to learn more about taekwondo and history I don't think I can actually give this any stars. However it did fire up my imagination, and push me to learn more about taekwondo and history and even some of the new-age hippy ideas it explores. It kept me reading during a time when lots of kids lose interest, and was a good 'in-between' book from children's to adult's fantasy.

    However I don't think I'll be going back to re-read them as an adult Let's just keep those shiny memories from my childhood all squeaky clean and happy lol. May 09, Jill Smith rated it really liked it. She was giving a session with Kim Wilkins and another author. I was heartened by the fact that she was dyslexic and not highly educated and often writes with heavy metal music playing! This book is an amazing adventure and as intriguing as its title, and it is the first bo I was fortunate enough to meet Traci Harding at Somerset Literary Festival a few years ago.

    Traci did say at Somerset that she based many of her characters on pieces of her family and friends characteristics, drawing on the unique relationships she knows intimately. Essentially, this story is about Tory Alexandra, a solitary woman who is grieving the untimely death of her brother. Her car breaks down near some ancient monolithic stones dating back to Stonehenge era when England was still a clan based and feudal system.

    She is forced to stop for the night without realizing that she is part of history and that a vortex will send back in time to the Dark Ages. She meets Prince Maelgwn who is in her own history books as a King of England with a powerful effect on the unification of the clans.

    Tory becomes trainer to the Prince in martial arts and the ways of the future world. With dark magical enemies and Merlin the Kings confidant who aids them both in the battle to secure their own clan and unite with others. Maelgwn nearly does not triumph and Tory pays a huge price for bearing the Prince a future King of England. In the Dark Ages Tory Alexander becomes the link between past, present and future that saves the Kingdom and changes the history books forever.

    This is a difficult book to summarize in brief as it is complex. The characters are very strong and leave a deep sense of longing in the reader to continue the tale. For those of you who love to loose yourself to satisfying characterization and complex cause and effect tale this series will be a must read. Dec 07, Nurni Leave What's Heavy Behind rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: anyone who loves a good romance. Shelves: favorites , amazing-characters , fantasy , time-travel , teen , I feel kind of embarrassed to publish a positive review of this book because just about all the reviews of it on this site are negative.

    Everyone says its badly written, that the characters aren't developed, that they found the fake old English annoying etc etc etc. I should probably mention that I'm a teenager.

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    Have I gained your respect again? I agree it wasn't perfect- it actually took me a while to get into. T I feel kind of embarrassed to publish a positive review of this book because just about all the reviews of it on this site are negative. The first section Time was not that interesting. At first I didn't love it, I just liked it. I liked the characters and the concept, but I kept putting the book down to read other books. It took me so long to read the first hundred or so pages that I thought I would never finish the book at pages.

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    However, once I was in I was in. The rest of the book was amazing and I couldn't put it down. I went from not even being able to finish a chapter in a day the chapters are huge to tearing through two chapters a day and now have finished it more quickly than I ever would have foreseen. Here's what I loved: 1 Torgwn: Here I am fangirling over a book that just about everyone else agrees is trashy, which I seem to be prone to doing I even loved "Matched" by Ally Condie, and still do actually despite the fact that it's not very original.

    Lots of people don't seem to care about the romance in this book, but me Even as individual characters I loved them both almost the instant I first "met" them. They're also perfect for each other and their love scenes are so romantic and sweet. Okay, so Harding can't kill off Tory because she's immortal, but if she kills off Maelgwn I won't forgive her. And I consider not making him immortal as "killing him off. I don't understand why people call Tory a Mary Sue when she is in fact a strong female character who is creating her own destiny. In addition to this, people called the characters flat and unsympathetic.

    I don't agree- I found all the main characters had a lot of depth to them and the use of an omniscient POV in the book enabled me to get inside the head of the characters and really sympathise with them. Reading about Maelgwn's doubts lead me to admire him even more. Brockwell's sections, especially that episode with the griffin, lead me to realise that he's not just arrogant and reckless but also exceptionally courageous and loving. Katren's daydreams about Brockwell made me really feel her love and admiration for him. However, as she is the protagonist, we see more of Tory's thoughts than we do of anyone else's, and we go a lot deeper into her mind.

    Her thoughts are so well written that I felt her feelings. Especially in regards to her immortality- reading about it made me feel so overwhelmed and sorry for her. It seems like she can't even handle being away from Maelgwn for a few hours which even though I went crazy over their relationship, I do think is a little over the top , so how is she going to be able to handle an eternity without him after he dies? The way the book was written made me feel like it was me who would have to live without her love forever, and it made me feel so empty and hopeless.

    We have Tory, of course, who is actively making a change; Katren, who is extremely courageous and determined, and a fighter not unlike Tory; Ione, with her physical strength, who makes a "manly" knight despite being a woman; Sorcha, the powerful queen who regrettably is dead before the book opens but is still an intriguing character; Jenovefa, who is so determined to learn Tae Kwon Do that she stands up to her controlling husband; and even the girlish maidens, Alma and Cara, learn to fight.

    The evil female characters, such as Mahaud and Princess Vanora, are also powerful, independent women. I really appreciate how the author has made this series a tribute to women and their strength. I'm not saying the characterisation was perfect, but I disagree with a lot of the claims by other reviewers that the characters were flat, unsympathetic and didn't change. They are all quite unique with their own pasts.

    I found Ione's backstory, for instance, quite fascinating, and the way her past had shaped her was equally fascinating- the way she was mistrustful of men and pretended to be crazy to avoid them. People who say the characters don't change? They certainly do, but often this change is choppy and unconvincing, only confusing me. Ione began to overcome her trauma and regain her trust in men; Katren changed from a damsel in distress to a woman of action; Tiernan finally got over Sorcha's death and decided to love again. However, it often feels like the change is too sudden and like the character just suddenly is a completely different person.

    Ione was a masculine, crazy woman who men laughed at, then all of a sudden she transforms into this flawless beauty who all the men long for. Katren dreamed about Brockwell and he didn't notice her, then all of a sudden their roles switch so that he's in love with her but has to chase her. Probably the most developed and convincing character arc was Brockwell's. He was a womaniser who had never been faithful to any "lover," and then he has to learn the consequences of his actions when he really falls in love but Katren doesn't believe he really loves her.

    This causes him to change his ways and be more respectful towards women, and faithful to his wife- a dynamic character change that really works.

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    • I absolutely loved how all the main characters also had another "version" of themselves in the twentieth century, although in general I preferred the sixth century characters. I wasn't a big fan of either Brian or Miles; I found Brian too pretentious and Miles not very intelligent. I also thought that Brian coming back to life ruined what was so amazing about Tory's relationship with Brockwell- she went back in time to be reunited with her dead brother, only to go forward in time to be And I didn't like how Tory thought that she could have a relationship with Miles- As far as I'm concerned, he's not Maelgwn, despite the fact that he's supposed to be his "twentieth century embodiment" or whatever.

      In regards to the others- I felt like we didn't get to "know" Naomi or Rose well enough to like them. I didn't like Teo either-he was weak and not strong like he was made out to be. I presume that him being possessed by Mahuad was supposed to be a big plot twist, but I saw it coming ages before it was finally revealed.

      The author herself most likely had different beliefs therefore her acceptance is impressive! I also like how she was able take martial arts and new age ideas, and merge them with the Celtic aspects to make them all seem one and the same- she was skilled at doing that. Overall I loved this book. It wasn't perfect, in fact far from it- but then again, what book is perfect? I will definitely continue the series- although I'm worried it might break my heart.

      Dec 15, Penny added it. What I didn't like: Firstly, the romance aspect of this book is understated in the blurb. The first part of the story is basically a romance novel. The blurb talks about the main character being an awesome fighter, so I really expected that to be the main focus of the story. I expected to like the main character more, but I just didn't. Actually, the whole story took this telling rather than showing approach. There was little room for me to imagine anything, anticipate anything or to feel anything.

      The first approximately three chapters go to great effort to make the premise of the novel plausible. This is a goal that has varying degrees of pointlessness in this genre and in this case it just reads like a tedious fleshing out of the blurb. It seemed like there was ample opportunity in the first part of the novel for the characters to undergo some growth, but it just didn't happen, or when it did there wasn't enough of an emphasis on those characters.

      There were possibly too many characters, which made the emphasis of the story a little odd. Some really big events happened in the plot and the main characters just went on with things as though very little had changed. Finally, the dialogue makes ample use of the words thou and hast and their derivatives.

      I have certainly read other books which employed similar techniques and they did not bother me. Aug 20, Natalia Smith rated it liked it. This is a difficult review to write, because while I love this series to death, I enjoy it in the same way I enjoy the occasional bit of really bad television. I love these books, but honesty and objectivity compels me to admit that they're not very good. I'll be frank: the writing makes judicious use of purple prose and the editing is terrible, the storytelling is uneven and at times melodramatic to the point of ridiculousness, the drama is almost always contrived, the characters are all blatant This is a difficult review to write, because while I love this series to death, I enjoy it in the same way I enjoy the occasional bit of really bad television.

      I'll be frank: the writing makes judicious use of purple prose and the editing is terrible, the storytelling is uneven and at times melodramatic to the point of ridiculousness, the drama is almost always contrived, the characters are all blatant Mary Sues in the case of the protagonist, this is literally true: in a later installment of the series she's revealed to be a future incarnation of the author , the frequent misuse of YE OLDE ENGLISH is glaringly obvious to anyone with even a basic working knowledge of the proper usage of "thee" and "thou", the author relies far too heavily on deux ex machina and coincidence to advance her plot, and there are some giant, gaping holes in the world building.

      But I mean, other than that Look, I wish I had some convincing argument to defend this series against the people who say it's awful. I don't; it is awful. But for me, this series adds up to more than the sum of its many, many flaws. The writing is admittedly terrible for a mainstream-published novel I'd expect something more along this line from a self-published work , but if you don't go into it expecting a literary classic, it's actually pretty engaging. I'm not too proud to admit that I fell in love with a few of the Mary Sue characters, and I find the whole ridiculous, overdone plot immensely entertaining even after numerous re-reads.

      It's just one of those books that I inexplicably love, despite my own better judgement. Mar 11, Grace rated it did not like it. I started this book thinking I'd seen a lot of Traci Harding books around, she must be a good author. But oh no! I honestly don't know how this got published, I've read more in depth and interesting pieces written by emos on FanFiction.

      I understand the appeal, travel back in time and meet your true love, make your mark on history - who doesn't want to do that? It's a good idea, but I just couldn't stand the acceptance of the characters of Tory. Modern woman who flaunts her discman and camera And don't get me started on the tae kwon do.

      The moment quasi Merlin man creates a dojo for the eager ancient Welsh to learn in was when I flipped my iPad and was like "that's it, I'm out. Feb 26, Angela rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: Everyone. My most favourite novel ever. For some reason no other book, fantasy based or otherwise has even come close to the awesomeness that this book oozes.

      I first read it at fourteen years old tucked under my desk in english class I read it in class just to piss my teacher off. If I had to guess how many times I've read it since, it would be over fifty times. Set in the 's, Tory Alexander finds herself stranded on a quite English country road with a flat tyre. The rest is history. Traci inc My most favourite novel ever. Traci incorporates modern day quirks and references fuses it with British history and scrambles the yolk in a frying pan and cooked up this brilliant novel.

      Her spin with esoteric belief makes this continuing series my security blanket, teaching me so much about the world, perception and belief. That is all. Shelves: sci-fi. I got this book as a present, which makes it a little more difficult laying into it.

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      It was easy to read despite clocking in at pages. It was different from what I usually read. BAD The pretend-use of the Brythanic language really grated on me and made the book more difficult to read all the characters speak English, but with 'thee', 'thou', 'dost' and 'thine' thrown in - argh!


      It's appallingly badly written. The whole New Age spiri I got this book as a present, which makes it a little more difficult laying into it. The whole New Age spiritualism bullshit started to grate on me after a while it's like old Britannic myths mixed with sci-fi and a bit of tae-kwon-do!

      Oh, and time travel, of course On balance, it was ok, but I would only recommend it if you're really into these kinds of books! Feb 06, Kassandra rated it it was amazing. I love everything and anything by Traci Harding and this book is what started it all. Tory is a strong, independent and brave woman. I love any story when there is a heroine instead of a hero because it's so refreshing, especially when they just get on with it all and don't become a blubbering mess all the time.

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      New Releases. Ancient Future Trilogy. Notify me. Description The best-selling epic adventure trilogy from one of Australia's most loved fantasy authors Late one evening, an accident near a ring of stones throws tory Alexander across the vortex of time and space to the Dark Ages.