“Legends of the Grail” Book 2

Heroines of Avalon & Other Tales

About Heroines of Avalon & Other Tales:

In times of yore, their presence was seen and felt everywhere in the Natural World…They spun the moon, made flowers grow and springs gush forth. They were the natural allies of the both animals and man. They had the magical powers that created whole peoples, and brought forth light. But they were often undermined, under attack and coveted by powerful figures and forces…And yet they rose strong and powerful, even when it required great sacrifice.

They were the Celtic Goddesses and Heroines whose stories have been kept alive for hundreds—if not thousands–of years, and who have inspired women throughout the ages to seek and take sustenance from the Divine Feminine, to nurture themselves and their feminine essence in the light cast by these figures. And to honor the balance of nature, so needed in this time.

Ayn Cates Sullivan, PhD, walked the hills and valleys, crawled inside the ancient cairns and stood on the ancient landscapes in Britain where these Goddesses and Heroines are still known and has brought these tales to life for this generation. Are you ready for a magical adventure to the Otherworlds?

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Awards:

IRDA (Independent Reader Discovery Award) Top Fiction Award
Heroines of Avalon & Other Tales  

Nautilus Award Winner 2019, Silver in Women’s Fiction
“Better Books For A Better World”

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Heroines of Avalon & Other Tales

Heroines of Avalon & Other Tales has won the Gold with NIEA (National Indie Excellence Awards) in New Age Fiction:

Heroines of Avalon & Other Tales has been chosen as a Next Generation Indie Book Award finalist in the New Age Fiction Category

Heroines of Avalon & Other Tales was honored with both a COVR Gold for Contemporary Spirituality Books and a COVR Silver for Shamanism & Wicca books at the International New Age Trade Show COVR awards ceremony.

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Heroines of Avalon has been chosen as a finalist in the 2019 Next Generation Indie Book Awards in the Fiction/New Age division.
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Heroines of Avalon & Other Tales is now available as an eBook from Amazon or Smashwords.

Hardcovers will be available November 1, 2018. Pre-orders are available.

HEROINES OF AVALON AND OTHER TALES
THE LEGENDS OF THE GRAIL SERIES

Ayn Cates Sullivan
Belle Crow duCray (Illustrator)
Infinite Light Publishing (Aug 20, 2018)
Hardcover $26.95 (279pp)
978-1-947925-04-5

Clarion Rating: 5stars

Heroines of Avalon weaves the ancient stories of British Isles goddesses and heroines together in a feminine, melodic assembly.

Ayn Cates Sullivan’s Heroines of Avalon and Other Tales is a beautiful mythology collection focused on the goddesses and heroines of the British Isles, sharing their stories and imagining how they can be honored in contemporary lives.

The collection is divided into three sections—one on Welsh mythology, one on British mythology, and one on the myths of the women of Avalon. Each section is subdivided to cover goddesses and heroines individually—first giving background information on each woman’s place within the myths, including their cultural and religious significance and individual abilities, then presenting their stories, and then proposing how they can be honored today. The format is easy to navigate, and all of the information is easy to process.

Sullivan’s retelling explores how the women’s actions led to their growing into legends. The women covered include the Welsh “archetypal womb Goddess” Arianrhod, who is betrayed and tricked into motherhood, and the Arthurian heroine Elaine, who guarded the Holy Grail with her life but was reduced to a lesser role within King Arthur’s story. Stories and sketches capture the period details well, from clothing to weapons to royal courts.

These are stories that have been told before, but Sullivan makes them her own. Her writing is lyrical and focuses on making the women central within familiar stories. Its tone is reverent, and its details are magical, from Blodeuwedd’s transformation from a flower into a woman to Iouga’s spiritual connection to her river. Here, the fantastical is not shied away from—it is amplified.

The reading experience is thorough and provocative. While some of these women interact in the myths, their stories are incorporated in a way that makes linear reading unnecessary. Goddesses can be approached on an individual basis, according to their attributes and abilities or to reader interest.

Instructions on connecting with each goddess are included—such as channeling Blodeuwedd, who is made a patron of physical love, within relationships; or calling upon Elen, who protects travelers, when you’re on a journey—elevating the book beyond its educational aspects and encouraging reflection and interaction.

Each heroine is different, both in meaning and in personality, and their stories are differently told. Each story has a distinct tone that complements the personality of its character, enabling deeper connections to the goddesses and heroines. At first, legends are related from a third-person point of view; halfway through, the text switches to a first-person narrative.

Heroines of Avalon weaves the ancient stories of British Isles goddesses and heroines together in a feminine, melodic assembly.

Reviewed by Hannah Hohman
September 20, 2018

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5star-shiny-web1RED HEADED BOOK LOVER

“Heroines of Avalon & Other Tales” is the next book in this series.

It just received another excellent five star review.

 

Heroines of Avalon & Other Tales Reader’s Favorite 5 Star Review: 5star-shiny-web1

“Heroines of Avalon & Other Tales by Ayn Cates Sullivan transports readers into the time of legend and revisits deities and legendary female characters linked to Welsh and British mythology. In this book, the author shares her insights and her journey to discovering her past, a journey that compelled her to research the extraordinary characters in her book. She says: “Recently I discovered through DNA testing that my family is related to the most powerful woman of the 12th century. Eleanor of Aquitaine (1122-1204), the daughter and heiress of William, Duke of Aquitaine and Count of Poitiers.” While her discovery can be judged to be stunning, her research into the myth of the Holy Grail creates beautiful mythical encounters, bringing to life “untold” stories of characters like the Goddess Arianrhod, Blodeuweddi, Iouga, Elen, also known as “Elen of the Ways,” and the Goddess of Sovereignty, Elaine and Dindraine in the Arthurian female Grail Knights.

The writing is beautiful and atmospheric and readers listen to the voices of women of legend. The stories begin with an informative commentary that shares the author’s personal journey and offers elements of myth and the culture around which these characters evolved. The reader will understand the feminine visage of God and the role of some of the heroic women in the lives and history of legendary heroes like Arthur. The literary allusions are manifold in this narrative, and they feature the Lady of the Lake, Morte D’Arthur, and the Arthurian Round Table. One understands the role of women in British mythology and that brave kings were nothing without them: “A king must connect to the spirit of the land through a woman.”

Heroines of Avalon & Other Tales is a gripping narrative, a collection of powerful mythical women that will keep the reader spellbound. Ayn Cates Sullivan combines her storytelling craft with research to provide readers with great entertainment. Each story includes symbolism, a spirituality developed around the deity, and poems evoking a spiritual atmosphere linked to the character. It is well-illustrated and loaded with symbolism.”

— Reviewed by Romuald Dzemo for Readers’ Favorite

 

ir-award-winnerVerdict: HEROINES OF AVALON is an elegant and gracefully written book that will aid women in their quests for healing, power, and strength.

4.7 Stars

The 21st century is an auspicious time for women to reclaim their heritage, to to come into their own and seize the power that has been denied to them for hundreds of years. By discovering the source of healing and sovereignty that lies within, women can pull themselves up to their full spiritual height and become queens in their own lives. The tradition of the ancient Celts is loaded with strong female personalities to help today’s women do just that. In the presence of these goddesses, women can encounter strong, inspiring spiritual mothers who can guide them on the path to whom they were meant to be.

Women’s spirituality books are a dime a dozen and tend to cover the same ground. Luckily, Ayn Cates Sullivan’s HEROINES OF AVALON is a true work of value. Sullivan presents the goddesses of ancient Wales and Britain in a fresh, new way, narrating their untold stories with supple grace and fierce mysticism. A distinctive Celtic flavor is present here, as Sullivan narrates these tales in an elegant, beautiful manner that would do any bard proud. She offers up the symbolism of these powerful feminine figures in a way that is simultaneously accessible and metaphysical and largely manages to avoid the pop psychobabble that permeates New Age books like a plague, drawing on her own experiences with the Goddess tradition and seamless research to make these tales come alive.

There’s a wealth of inspiration here, as the book covers a good range of Celtic myth. Goddesses of sovereignty like Arianrhod, Blodeuwedd, Elen of the Ways, and the legends of the Holy Grail are all on the menu, gently guiding readers with their possibilities for enlightenment. Additional resources include visualizations; animal, plant, and color symbolism; meditations; and Celtic holidays associated with each goddess.

Perhaps the sole criticism that could be made of HEROINES OF AVALON is that it’s too short and misses some key figures in Celtic legend. The beloved myths of Rhiannon and Cerridwen, given their popularity in the Goddess tradition, are particularly lamentable omissions. Fortunately, Sullivan has other books that cover similar stories of the Divine Feminine.

HEROINES OF AVALON is an elegant and gracefully written book that will aid women in their quests for healing, power, and strength.

— Heather McNamara for IndieReader

 

About Heroines of Avalon:

Any nation or tribe that remembers and re-tells the stories of their people carry a torch of light and insight that continues to pass hope from one generation to the next. Heroines of Avalon includes a round table of inspiring women, including well-known Welsh deities and almost forgotten Arthurian female Grail Knights and landscape Goddesses. In this collection of British myths and legends, each heroine re-tells her story, often freeing herself from centuries of misunderstanding. These feisty women are inspiring role models. The book also includes practices that can help the reader journey to the deity and integrate the heroine’s life affirming qualities. This is the second volume in the “Legends of the Grail” series, which focuses on the Grail as Goddess. The series is designed to help us restore and embrace the qualities of the feminine that have been lost in most cultures and religions.  As the age of violence and domination ends, we look to the feminine archetypes to heal us both individually and collectively, so the planet can be restored. It is a book that invites wholeness and peace. An interview with Iva Kenaz and Ayn Cates Sullivan in Prague about the Heroines of Avalon. Why are myths and legends important to us now?

Categories:

Women’s Fiction, Goddess Studies, Celtic Mythology

Current Interest: 

According to the New York Times, actress Reese Witherspoon recently said that it is important to bring “women to the front of their own stories and make them the heroes of their own stories.” (January 31, 2018, front page.) The three books in the Legends of the Grail series which can be read in any order, are written in such a way that each woman, goddess or heroine becomes the champion of her own tale.

Audience:

Anyone wishing to find feminine role models, and those with British or Celtic roots, which includes half of the population of the United States.

Mission of the Book: 

The purpose of the book (and the entire Legends of the Grail series) is to help women and men remember their wholeness. We are at critical turning point in our planetary history. It is time we remembered to care for one another and this Earth. These are stories date back, in some cases, as far as 8,000 years, yet the wisdom is timeless. We need tales of light and hope so that our children have a future to live into!

Pre-order now – Launches November 1, 2018 ISBN: 978-1-947925-04-5 (hardback) Pre-launch Review copies available now.

Contact info@infinitelightpublishing.com for details: 978-1-947925-06-9(eBook) 978-1-947925-08-3 (paperback)