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The Great Chariot Horse

April 22nd, 2014 by John Royce · The Great Horses

“An eruption of applause broke the spell, swelling as the Imperial team galloped onto the arena floor.”

This striking and highly-detailed miniature artwork by Marti Adrian Gregory shows the personality of each chariot horse from the story! The 3rd Great Horse in history is part of the Emperor’s Quadriga (4-horse chariot).

The team is intentionally made of stallions, according to the custom of the times. The horse on the right, the iguales, is a fleet-footed, skittish stallion of early Arabian blood named Saxon … eager Ajax and trusty Helios are teamed to the yoke … and the terror of the Circus and source of the Emperor’s trouble is the leftmost horse, the popular funales called Cerberus.

The Emperor's chariot team (100 AD) ... from Eclipsed by Shadow, Book #1 of THE LEGEND OF THE GREAT HORSE trilogy: (c) Micron Press

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The Great Horse: Scythian Royal Escort

April 9th, 2014 by John Royce · The Great Horses

The 2nd historic Great Horse wore a headdress according to Scythian custom, but Meagan (and readers) never know him: the animal was sacrificed with a tombful of horses and human attendants to be an escort for a Scythian chieftain in the after-world.

Horse sacrificed in a Scythian tomb (700 BC) from Eclipsed by Shadow, Book #1 of THE LEGEND OF THE GREAT HORSE trilogy

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The Great ‘Cave’ Horse

April 2nd, 2014 by John Royce · The Great Horses

The first historic Great Horse from the trilogy is a gentle prehistoric mare. At first, Meagan doesn’t know she is dealing with a ‘cave’ horse–equine nature has not changed in many thousands of millennia. It is humans who have changed.

The gray "cave" mare from 20,000 BC in THE LEGEND OF THE GREAT HORSE trilogy (Book 1: Eclipsed by Shadow)

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20,000 BC: The Cave Horse

March 29th, 2014 by John Royce · The Great Horses

The unusual thing about the first Great Horse Meagan meets in history is that it isn’t unusual at all. Meagan doesn’t realize at first that she has traveled time or that she is dealing with a prehistoric herd of horses.

Humans could have tamed horses tens of thousands of years earlier than actually occurred, because horses evolved much earlier than modern man. There was no inner difference between a horse Meagan would have encountered in 20,000 BC and a horse today: it is humans that have changed.

quotation markIn the growing light, Meagan could see the horse was a mare. The animal’s round belly was tucked into thin, drawn quarters and her cream-colored coat was mottled with patches of darker gray. The scrubby mane and tail were chewed off in spots, and her coat was covered in scars and puffy lumps.

Cave Mare (20,000 BC) from Eclipsed by Shadow - Book 1 of The Legend of the Great Horse trilogy by John Royce. Illustration by Marti Adrian Gregory “Poor thing, no one’s taking care of you.” Meagan’s voice was loud in this quiet place and many small eyes were quickly upon her. She decided to rinse off her coating of dust and grime, and knelt in the cool water to gently splash her arms. She inhaled deeply, drawing in rich scents of animals and earth.

Warm breath smelling of cut lawn blew on her neck. Meagan blinked in surprise but did not move. She thought of something else her grandfather used to say: “Horses are as unpredictable as people, only they have more sense.”

Meagan let the flutter of horse nostrils explore her hair as she reached slowly for the mare’s shaggy withers. The small gray horse half-closed her eyes as Meagan scratched gently to imitate the nuzzling greeting of equines. “A horse got me into this,” she told the mare softly. “Maybe you could get me out…”

Excerpted from Eclipsed by Shadow, the award-winning 1st volume of “The Legend of the Great Horse” trilogy.

Eclipsed by Shadow (Book #1 of the trilogy) won national awards including the Eric Hoffer Award for best Young Adult Fiction, and the Mom’s Choice Award for best family-friendly Young Adult Fantasy.

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Links:

» See All Excerpts from The Legend of the Great Horse trilogy.

» Read the 1st Chapter online.

» See the Media Kit for more information about the trilogy.

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Eclipsed by Shadow - Book #1 of The Legend of the Great Horse trilogy - Bookcover (straight-on, drop shadow) 142px by 203 px
The Golden Spark - Book #2 of The Legend of the Great Horse trilogy - Bookcover (straight-on, drop shadow) 142px by 203 px
Into the Dark - Book #3 of The Legend of the Great Horse trilogy - Bookcover (straight-on, drop shadow) 142px by 203 px

Copyright © 2008 John Royce

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