Thursday, 11 August 2016

5 Star Guest Post - Mark Noce

Release Date: August 23, 2016
I am thrilled to welcome author of Between Two Fires, Mark Noce, to my blog.

Firstly, I would like to congratulate Mark on writing a superb novel that takes the reader into the world of Branwen, daughter of King Vortigen, ruler of the Kingdom of Dyfed, Wales.

The story grabbed my attention from the first page to the very last word. Mark intricately weaves in historical fact, placing the reader directly in the midst of medieval Wales, without detracting from the exquisite story, filled with emotion: war, personal vendettas, love, jealousy, hope, belief,  and the journey of Branwen – from childhood to womanhood.

The characterization is excellent, the plot is sound and due to twists and turns in the story, all of which were unpredictable, I could not stop reading. The story is captivating and powerful  and Mark’s writing style is one of an expert story-teller. I can't tell you how much I wanted to love this book. I don't usually read historical fiction due to the overabundance of historical fact that a reader usually has to plough through. But Mark Noce has created the perfect balance which has renewed my faith in this genre and I can't wait to read more of his work.

I cannot praise this novel enough and highly recommend it. Thank you, Mark! 

Synopsis of Between Two Fires

Saxon barbarians threaten to destroy medieval Wales. Lady Branwen becomes Wales’ last hope to unite their divided kingdoms when her father betroths her to a powerful Welsh warlord, the Hammer King.

But this fledgling alliance is fraught with enemies from within and without as Branwen herself becomes the target of assassinations and courtly intrigue. A young woman in a world of fierce warriors, she seeks to assert her own authority and preserve Wales against the barbarians. But when she falls for a young hedge knight named Artagan her world threatens to tear itself apart. Caught between her duty to her people and her love of a man she cannot have, Branwen must choose whether to preserve her royal marriage or to follow her heart. Somehow she must save her people and remain true to herself, before Saxon invaders and a mysterious traitor try to destroy her.


Mark Noce writes historical fiction with a passion, and eagerly reads everything from fantasy to literature. Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, he’s an avid traveler and backpacker, particularly in Europe and North America. He earned his BA and MA from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, where he also met his beautiful wife. By day, he works as a Technical Writer, having spent much of his career at places like Google and Facebook. In addition to writing novels, he also writes short fiction online. When not reading or writing, he’s probably listening to U2, sailing his dad’s boat, or gardening with his family.

His debut novel, Between Two Fires, is being published by Thomas Dunne Books (an imprint of St. Martin's Press and Macmillan). It is the first in a series of historical fiction novels set in medieval Wales.

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Others also loved Between Two Fires

“A spirited ride through a turbulent slice of Welsh history!” – Paula Brackston, NYT Bestselling author of The Witch’s Daughter

“A fast-paced read that has a wonderfully visual style and some memorable characters. Mark Noce combines Welsh history with a touch of folkloric magic in this promising debut novel. Lady Branwen is a strong and engaging narrator and the turbulent setting of early medieval Wales makes a fine backdrop for an action-packed story.” – Juliet Marillier, Bestselling author of Daughter of the Forest and Wolfskin