Today I have a guest post by the talented and gracious Mary Morgan. Mary is always willing to help her fellow authors, as I can attest. Please, read on to learn about her approach to research for her successful Order of the Dragon Knights series and consider buying her books.
Hello Dan! Thank you for hosting me on your fabulous blog today. What an epic adventure since I signed my first contract ten years ago for Dragon Knight’s Sword (Order of the Dragon Knights, Book 1).
Where History Meets Magic!
I’ve often been asked this question, “Why Medieval? Why not Regency, Victorian, or Western?” In truth, I love them all, but my heart belongs to the medieval era. It started when my fingers opened a book about the great Irish King, Brian Boru (941-1014A.D.). His story is legendary, especially with the people of Ireland. King Brian led the Irish to the peak of their Golden Age—from poetry, arts, saints, and scholars. A spark ignited within my soul for more.
I sought out tales of knights in shining armor and folk heroes, delving into a life teeming with richness, though at times harsh and violent. Yet it wasn’t until I devoured the history of Brian Boru that I became immersed in medieval life. From there, I treasured tales of life in castles, traveling on horseback, and studying foods and herbs.
And I couldn’t have a story without some magic woven throughout. It’s part of the creative process, and I can create my own world. With a love for Celtic mythology, specifically the Tuatha Dé Danann, I incorporated this ancient race of people into the theme of my books and the Dragon Knights. They were known as the Shining Ones or Ireland’s fairy folk known as the Sidhe (Shee).
Even though there are paranormal elements in the books, I’ve managed to weave a historical event or place into the stories. Let me share a wee bit of history and the Dragon Knights with you…
1. In Dragon Knight’s Sword, Duncan MacKay mentions the Treaty of Falaise with the druid Cathal. The Treaty of Falaise was a forced written agreement made in December 1174 between two kings: King William of Scotland who was held prisoner by Henry II, King of England.
2. In Dragon Knight’s Medallion, Stephen MacKay flees his home after a battle and lives with the monks at Arbroath Abbey in Scotland. King William of Scotland, also known as William the Lion, founded the abbey in 1178. He asked the Tironensian monks from Kelso Abbey to establish the monastery. The abbey was intended as a memorial to William’s childhood friend Thomas Becket, the murdered Archbishop of Canterbury to help the king expand his authority in the north-east of Scotland.
3. In Dragon Knight’s Axe, Alastair MacKay is a merchant and conducts his business on Dunnyneil Island off the north-east of Ireland. The island had been an important trading post to traders from Russia, Germany, Iceland, and mainland Europe from as early as the 6th and 7th centuries. Merchants would have brought wine and other luxury products to Ireland to exchange at Dunnyneill for furs, seal skin, slaves, and famed Irish wolfhounds.
4. In Dragon Knight’s Shield, Angus MacKay uses his sword and shield to gain money. When you first meet him, he’s in Rouen, France, a site where many jousting tournaments were actually held. And yes, Angus does compete.
5. In Dragon Knight’s Ring, Adam MacKay spent several years as a Crusader. He sought to make amends after the death of his beloved by going to the Holy Land. Yet the Crusades were filled with their own challenges and often times, brutal. He returned to Scotland more broken than when he left.
Most of my research comes from books and my travels, especially with one particular castle. I’ve always been drawn to Urquhart Castle in Scotland, so this was the home I envisioned for my knights. It’s ancient, mystical, and where the Loch Ness Monster dwells within the loch. This site first appeared in historical records in the 6th century. Yet in researching the ownership of the castle, I eventually chose a time when there was a “gray” area of possession—the early 13th century. In June 2017, I spent hours wandering the ruins of Urquhart and the surrounding landscape. I finally made it home to the Dragon Knights. And when I touched the ancient stones, I heard the whispers of these knights telling me I’m not done with their stories.
Order of the Dragon Knights ~
They were an ancient order, descended from the great Tuatha Dé Danann, the Sidhe, or in simpler terms: the Fae. Half-human and half-fae, each knight blessed with mystical powers. Given to them were holy relics from the Fae and guardianship over their Dragons.
They were known as the Dragon Knights.
However, some believed the Order had too much power and they tried to possess it for themselves. They were evil and twisted, and their plan succeeded one fateful night. The brothers of the Clan MacKay—Dragon Knights, fought a battle. Blood spilled onto holy ground, bringing forth the wrath of the Fae. Their relics were taken, and the Order was banished—each name stricken from the hallowed halls of the Fae.
The Clan MacKay is no longer.
The Dragon Knights have scattered across the land.
Yet out of the darkness, they will each fight for redemption, and the women they love.
Available at AMAZON
Book Trailer for Dragon Knights: https://youtu.be/iEruV9P6PtU
About the Author
Multi award-winning romance author, Mary Morgan resides in Northern California with her own knight in shining armor. However, during her travels to Scotland, England, and Ireland, she left a part of her soul in one of these countries and vows to return.
Mary's passion for books started at an early age along with an overactive imagination. Inspired by her love for history and ancient Celtic and Norse mythology, her tales are filled with powerful warriors, brave women, magic, and romance. Now, the worlds she created in her mind are coming to life within her stories.
If you enjoy history, tortured heroes, and a wee bit of fantasy, then travel back in time within the pages of her books.
Connect with Mary here ~