Ronlyn Domingue official author photoYou’re writing a trilogy which can be read “out of order.” How did that happen?

I didn’t intend to write a trilogy at all. I expected my second book to be one huge sprawling novel, but it morphed into something even bigger. A subplot about a female mapmaker, exiled for treason, took on a life of its own and became the trilogy’s first book, The Mapmaker’s War. The rest of the story grew so much that it split into two.

Ronlyn Domingue official author photoYour second novel is The Mapmaker’s War: A Legend. What’s your elevator pitch?

Margaret Atwood meets Beowulf.

 

So what’s it about?

A mapmaker, exiled for treason, who must come to terms with the home and children she left behind. It’s an exploration of good and evil and the choices that lie between. There’s adventure involved—a quest, of course, to find a dragon—and war and peace and love and betrayal. It’s told in the spirit of legends, like Beowulf, an account of a remarkable person’s life and deeds. However, unlike old tales of this kind, Aoife (pronounced ee-fah) tells her own story—and her own truth.

 

Mapmaker's War Final Cover book jacketTRANSLATOR’S NOTE

This narrative is an exceptional rarity. The source language scarcely has been heard spoken outside its cultural borders. Until the acquisition of this work, the presumption was that no writing system existed for the language. In remarkable condition despite its age, the handwritten manuscript is not only one of the earliest known autobiographies but also one of the first attributed to a woman.

The author’s rhetorical structure defies the conventions of any period; she addresses herself throughout and appears to be her own audience. Further, while matters of war and society are so often the domain of chroniclers, historians, and philosophers, this author offers a concurrent, heretofore unknown representation of past events through the story of a participant and a survivor.

Simplified pronunciations of several proper names are as follows. Aoife [ee-fah]; Ciaran [keer-ahn]; Wyl [will]; Aza [ah-zah]; Edik [ed-ick]; Leit [lite]; Wei [why]; and Makha [mahk-ah].

—S. Riven

The last time I drove past the apartments on North 5th, their efficient practicality had been scrubbed up a bit. A nice little fence marked the front entrance. The sidewalk that led into the U-shaped courtyard had healthy plants on both sides. The casement windows had been replaced. Someone had finally taken pride in the boxy old place, built in 1948 to provide post-war housing.