Of Water and Dragons

Nemu has a gift for healing. She is of Celtic blood, with green eyes slanted like that of a cat, half-water and half-human, with wings and a very long life span. While in the woods, she happens upon a wounded Roman soldier. As commander of the Roman Cavalry, Gaius Suetonius Ambiorix has a duty to Rome. When his army is ambushed and he is struck in the head, he is thankful he was wearing his helmet, but minutes before he falls into darkness, he hears laughter, a whooshing sound and flapping wings. Ambiorix has been promised to Veleria, a daughter of a wellborn noble, but once he sets his gaze on Nemu, there is a force drawing them together until he notices her wings. His mother believed such stories about fairies but this was the first time he had actually encountered one and developed feelings. Even the sound of her lovely voice is like the soothing sound of water. He soon tells Nemu that he must get back to his home and wonders if he can trust her. Time passes and Ambiorix must keep his promise to Valeria, so he ends up taking her as his wife, yet Nemu is embedded in his heart. It doesn’t matter that he has known Valeria since their youth, there is only one woman he desires, and when Ambiorix is in the forest he feels more at home than in Rome. After chaos develops inside his house, while he is away on business, he promises to avenge the tribes that caused the destruction. When he unlocks his heritage, he realizes there is more ahead for him and Nemu.

This lovely fantasy carries the reader into a world of beauty, magic, and forests, along with the whole visual landscape of Rome that comes to life in the pages, once the battles begin. From the reflections in the water, to the dragons and all the wonderful imagery in this tale, this reader could sense and feel the adventure. Nemu, Ambiorix and Valeria are interesting characters that create a stirring tale. Kelley Heckart embraces romance, battles, and fairies in Of Water and Dragons that make this delightful story a precious treasure to read. She instills a great plot, intriguing dialogue and a well-rounded cast of secondary characters that keep the story flowing creatively and gives good meaning to absence makes the heart grow fonder.

Reviewed by: Linda L.

Linda L.