Text and Art Copyright © 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 by Tobias D. Robison, Princeton, NJ, USA
All Rights Reserved.
ISBN for the PRINTED version: 1448647126, EAN-13 : 978-1-4486471-2-5
A tale in four parts,
Tobias D. Robison
Book Cover Art and Illustration
Mary K. Dolan
Princeton, NJ, USA
Raven’s Gift is entirely a work of fiction. Its characters are not based on any actual human beings or animals, and the story is not based upon, nor related to, any actual events that have ever happened. Only the magic is real.
Dedication, Acknowledgments and Thanks:
This novel is dedicated with great appreciation to Elaine, and to Myrn.
I’ve often read books that the authors dedicated to their spouses for their encouragement and help, but I never understood what those authors meant. Elaine: Now I understand. Thanks.
Myrn, you’ve been my constant muse, and it was you who persuaded me that eventually I’d master the Willems. I’m so glad I found you.
Mary Dolan, I saw Raven’s world anew under your patient questioning, and in your sketches and painting. Thanks.
Ian McFadyen, your satirical advice about how to write a best selling fantasy novel had an excellent influence on Raven’s Gift:
Richard Pinkerton carefully critiqued the entire novel, and told me about http://www.critiquecircle.com/. Alan Peschke explained what it’s like when black powder ignites. Leah Cypess led me to the Critters at http://www.critters.org, and Noam Tanner asked the hard question about the wyrm.
Hanna Fox, thanks for your perception, encouragement, and advice.
Michael Mahoney, thanks for helping to make my fantasy world real.
And thanks to many others for their eagle-eyed edits and suggestions: Cara DiGirolamo, Mellissa Green, Annaliese Lemmon (for the novel’s first sentence), Joanna Reynolds, Zehava Zevit, and many helpful and observant Critiquers and Critters at http://www.critiquecircle.com/ and http://www.critters.org/ .
Elaine, thanks again, for proofreading. Any remaining mistakes were introduced into the text (by me, of course) after you proofread it. Everyone, please report the remaining typographical errors to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here’s how I pronounce a few of the stranger words in Raven’s Gift. (You can pronounce them any way you like.) If it annoys you that I didn’t spell them differently, please drop me a line of complaint, at email@example.com. I use the accent mark to show the accented syllable.
Abarham: Uh bar’ um.
Aedrian: sounds like Adrianne. Long A.
Aldafallon: Al’ duh fal’ un. (‘A’ as in at.)
Amia: Ahm’ ee uh
Armasstile: Arm’ uh steel’
Ausland: Owss’ land (Ow as in Owl)
Avantar: A’ vun tar (first A as in at; second a as in ah).
Azicah: Ah’ zi cah (short i)
Bevricus: Bev ree’ cuss
Castia: Cah’ stee ya.
Chalmu: Tchall’ moo.
Croughan: crow’ un
Dunjle: Dunj’ lee.
Eutrothen: Yew troe’ thun
Eulwen: Yule’ wen
Fermus: Firm’ us.
Gens: jenns (e as in jet). This word means: people; usually: good people.
Gondia Alley: Gahn’ die uh
Hinaxe: Hin’ ax
jagd: yagd. A as ‘at’
Jahnny: A as in ‘at’
Jomes: The o is long, the e is silent.
Larasse: Lar’russ. Pronouce the first a as in at.
Honester: Ahn’ est er.
Mari: Ma’ri. A as in ‘at.’ I as in ee.
Myrn: Rhymes with learn.
Orkandus: Oar can’ duss
Orvannon: Or vann’ un. (‘A’ as in at.)
Raunces: Rawns (the s is soft.)
Rogier: Roe’ gee er
Ryantha: Ree ann’ thuh
Tericia: Ter rish’ uh
Willems: Wil’ums. (short i)
Zhourain: Zhoo rane.’ (Zh is as in azure, oo as in cool. )
Life is difficult, even when you’re good at it.