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The Mountain of Marvels: A Celtic Tale of Magic (Ancient Fantasy Book 1) by [Shepard, Aaron]
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The Mountain of Marvels: A Celtic Tale of Magic (Ancient Fantasy Book 1) Kindle Edition

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Editorial Reviews

From the Author

 
"Highly recommended . . . . A brief yet exciting and exotic fable of heroes striving to make their mark and protect those most dear to them in a fantastic world." -- Children's Bookwatch (Midwest Library Review), Jan. 2007
 
"Written in a lyrical voice that channels the ghosts of storytellers past. . . . Great for a librarian or teacher to read to a class." -- Sheila Ruth, Wands and Worlds, Jan. 2007
 
"A clear, simple, beautiful retelling. Those familiar with the source material will recognise how masterly a piece of work Shepard has crafted from notoriously challenging material. . . . Best of all, the language has retained the full richness of the underlying Celtic music." -- Louise Owen, Celtic Cafe
 
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SAMPLE
 
The next day, after the midday meal, Pwyll said to Manawydan, "Let us walk again on the mount. But this time, we'll bring my horse along."
 
So once more they climbed the mount. And they had not sat long when they saw the same lady, in the same dress and veil, on the same horse, on the same road, coming at the same slow, steady pace.
 
Pwyll speedily mounted his horse, but as he reached the foot of the mount, she was already riding past the spot. Then he let his horse prance after, thinking to easily overtake her. When he did not, he gave his horse the rein. It began to trot, yet fell even farther behind. Then he spurred it to a gallop -- but at its greatest speed, it lost more ground than ever. And still the lady rode no faster than a walk.
 
At last his horse began to fail, and he called out, "Lady, in the name of the man you hold dearest, please halt."
 
"I will," she said. "And for the sake of your horse, you could have asked it sooner."
 
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THE ANCIENT FANTASY SERIES BY AARON SHEPARD
 
#1 ~ THE MOUNTAIN OF MARVELS: A Celtic Tale of Magic, Retold from The Mabinogion. The story of the magical lady Rhiannon, the king who loved her, and the magician who hated and aimed to destroy them.
 
#2 ~ THE SONGS OF POWER: A Finnish Tale of Magic, Retold from the Kalevala. In a story born in the time of shamans, two magical heroes vie for the hand of a maiden and wind up battling her mother, whose powers rival their own.
 
#3 ~ THE MAGIC FLYSWATTER: A Superhero Tale of Africa, Retold from the Mwindo Epic. Mwindo's father, the chief, never wanted a son and tries to get rid of him -- but Mwindo has other ideas, as well as the powers to make them happen.
 
#4 ~ THE MONKEY KING: A Superhero Tale of China, Retold from The Journey to the West. From a comic epic about one of the most popular characters of all time. When Monkey decides he wants to become a god, Heaven had better watch out!
 

About the Author

See above.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1342 KB
  • Print Length: 46 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Skyhook Press (April 10, 2014)
  • Publication Date: April 10, 2014
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B002M3SXQG
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #284,878 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Sandra Heptinstall on April 15, 2008
Format: Paperback
The cover of this book is awesome. I had some trouble pronoucing the names of the people in this book even though the book showed us how to do it. I have to tell you this book is super cool. I liked it when Rhiannon was riding her horse and King Pwyll saw her and rode to meet her. Her horse just walked along slowly. No matter how fast Pwyll pushed his horse to ride faster he could not catch her. She was riding slow but kept getting further ahead of him.

I love the whole medieval period and the spells that were cast in this story. I am going to give this book a five star rating. I like reading story's from other countries. We do not have story's like this here in the U.S.A.

I just turned eleven today. I think this book would be good for kids eleven and up. I am on honor roll all the time so this story was not really hard for me to read and understand. It might be harder for younger kids to understand.

Thank you for writing this book and showing kids a different kind of story and time frame from another country.

Brandon Heptinstall 11
My grandma (Sandra Heptinstall) for helping me to type this. Don't ask my grandma her age. She will only tell you that she is older than dirt.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I applaud all efforts to popularize the old Welsh tales, especially ones that go beyond Arthur and Merlin. There are a number of wonderful works that incorporate the most well-known stories, including Susan Cooper's "Dark is Rising" series, Jenny Nimmo's "Magician Trilogy", Lloyd Alexander's "Chronicles of Prydain", and stand-alones like Fisher's "Darkhenge". That said, it's very hard to find an accessible Mabinogion, much less one aimed at middle grade readers.

This book, although brief and although representing just a small part of the Mabinogion, is a wonderful place to start. Mr. Shepard has done a commendable job of distilling what are, after all, fragments and pieces of stories, into a reasonably coherent tale. He has also done a nice job of preserving the feel and flow of the tales while modernizing the language and shaping the narrative.

And remember, these are basically 800+ year old versions of the same fantasy/quest/magic stories that fill the middle grade shelves now. That's pretty cool, (even for people who, unlike me, never wanted to name their daughter Bloudwedd).

So, if you want a nice, tight, entertaining and understandable intro to the world of Welsh/Celtic myth, this is a great find.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is an easy-to-read retelling of an ancient Celtic fantasy filled with magic. Shepard is an award-winning author. He retells many ancient tales from many different cultures. These stories are interesting in themselves and they inform us how ancient people thought and taught.

In this tale a strange veiled lady rides a horse very slowly near a king, but it is impossible to catch up with her either by running or using a galloping horse. She turns out to be beautiful, and the king needs magic to win her. The story is filled with the usage of the number three, which is characteristic of many fairy tales of many cultures. Beside this episode there is a second and a third, all involving this woman and the king. Readers will enjoy them.

Shepard includes an interesting history of Celtic tales.
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Format: Hardcover
American Folklore Society award-winner Aaron Shepard launches a new "Ancient Fantasy" series with The Mountain of Marvels: A Celtic Tale of Magic, a chapter book retelling of medieval Welsh legends from "The Mabinogion." Narrated in simple, vivid prose for readers age ten and up, The Mountain of Marvels is a brief yet exciting and exotic fable of heroes striving to make their mark and protect those most dear to them in a fantastic world. Highly recommended especially for grade school library collections and public library children's collections. In addition to the sturdy hardcover edition, The Mountain of Marvels is also available in paperback.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A very interesting tale of old. Such tales are often the best. Here the explanation of when the tale could have been compiled is as interesting as the story itself. I thoroughly enjoyed this reading and being enlightened of such ancient Wales/Celtic stories. I think this is an excellent way to preserve the old stories by updating them for more to enjoy.
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Ordered this given my Celtic heritage. I enjoyed these short 12th century tales but wish they were longer as the book lasted all of 30 minutes if that. Another one I heartily enjoyed was "The Songs of Power: A Finnish Tale of Magic, Retold from the Kalevala" if you would care to give my review a look for that as well. Definitely worth seeing more of what this author has uncovered with regards to tales of old.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A FABULOUS BOOK, YOU NEVER HEAR ANYTHING OF WALES EXCEPT IN CONJUNCTION WITH PRINCE CHARLES, AND THAT IS NEVER. GOOD. I WAS TOLD BY MY MOTHER THAT MY HERITAGE ON HER SIDE OF OUR FAMILY WAS ENGLISH, IRISH, AND WELSH. I LOVE HISTORY, YET I KNOW ALMOST NOTHING OF WALES. I HADN'T EVEN KNOWN THAT WALES WAS PART OF THE CELTIC RACE. I'M REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO NOW STUDYING WELSH HISTORY. THANK YOU VERY MUCH AARON SHEPARD.
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Aaron Shepard has created an exciting re-telling of the stories of Rhiannon and Pwyll. The stories have magic and shape shifting and romantic love. We learn about loyalty too. It is fun for an adult to read and it would be great to share and discuss them with children. He also provides the reader with a short history lesson and informs how older versions might be different.
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