Saturday, January 11, 2014

Shadowplay Blog Tour: Guest Post, A Brief History of Ellada and its Colonies

Today we have the pleasure of hosting the Shadowplay Blog Tour! 

A Brief History of Ellada and its Colonies

By Professor Caed Cedar, Royal Snakewood University

(Author’s note: Professor Caed Cedar was a renowned historian of Ellada and its Colonies. Extracts of his many works appear occasionally in the quotes at the beginning of each chapter of the books)

Ellada was not always the great empire of the Archipelago. It used to be weak, lacking little in natural resources. Then, they discovered vast caches of Vestige in caves and caverns peppered through the land. Vestige, or these remnants of technology or magic from the long-vanished Alder, were thought to be mythical. Ellada used this Vestige to rise and lead the other countries of the Archipelago, who, though they had more natural resources, had far less Vestige.

It was never a bloody battle, yet the power clearly fell in Ellada’s favour. The colonies imported to Ellada at a highly reduced cost, but otherwise, they were more or less left in peace because Ellada did not believe in needlessly challenging the status quo. The colonies would try to break free occasionally, but always Ellada found a way to soothe them, convince them that it was better to be united under the Commonwealth. Immigration was discouraged – on both sides. There were few military bases. Rather, Ellada dangled the power above the other colonies’ heads. We were the glory of the Archipelago, and life for Elladans flourished.

Yet Vestige is not infinitely powerful. Over the decades, the centuries, their power has begun to run out. And though Ellada still has a sizeable amount of Vestige, it dwindles every year. When a glass globe extinguishes, it cannot be rekindled. When a gun runs out of power, it is no more than a hunk of metal. Slowly, but surely, our empire is weakening – the colonies have drawn back from Ellada and claimed independence, and we could not stop them seceding. It would be a bloody battle. Perhaps we are no longer meant to be an empire. But we are not weak; we simply must change, must adapt, or we shall crumble.

The circus lies behind Micah Grey in dust and ashes.

He and the white clown, Drystan, take refuge with the once-great magician, Jasper Maske. When Maske agrees to teach them his trade, his embittered rival challenges them to a duel which could decide all of their fates. People also hunt both Micah and the person he was before the circus—the runaway daughter of a noble family. And Micah discovers there is magic and power in the world, far beyond the card tricks and illusions he's perfecting...

A tale of phantom wings, a clockwork hand, and the delicate unfurling of new love, Shadowplay continues Micah Grey’s extraordinary journey


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