05-26-18 – Blog Queen - Sarah Raplee

Sunday, January 10, 2016


First Book in a Series – Daughter of Destiny, Book 1 of Guinevere’s Tale
I’m very excited to be here, not only because I’m launching a new series, but I’m also celebrating my debut novel! Daughter of Destiny is the first book in a historical fantasy trilogy that tells Guinevere’s
life story from her point of view. The book begins when she is 11 and covers approximately four years of her early life. In my version of the story, she loves another before she marries Arthur, a situation that has dire consequences both for her heart and for the future of Camelot. (A warning for the romance purists out there: this is a novel with strong romantic elements – the HEA doesn’t come until the end of the series.)

It’s interesting to me that up until the last 20 years, very few people bothered to explore Guinevere’s life before or after Arthur, as though she did not or could not exist without him. Bollocks! She was a woman with a family and hopes and dreams for her future before she was queen. As with each of us, the events of her youth – including her loves, heartbreaks, friends and enemies – shaped who she became as an adult. That is what I wanted to explore in Daughter of Destiny, to flesh out her early years and make Guinevere as real as you or I, to give context for her choices as queen (including her affair with Lancelot, which you will see in the second book, Camelot’s Queen), and to show how her life evolved as a result. A huge part of this was her first love, as it is for so many of us. None of us would be who we are without that person or if we had made different choices, and it’s the same for Guinevere. I hope you fall in love with him right along with her. I know I did!

Before queenship and Camelot, Guinevere was a priestess of Avalon. She loved another before Arthur, a warrior who would one day betray her.

In the war-torn world of late fifth century Britain, young Guinevere faces a choice: stay with her family to defend her home at Northgallis from the Irish, or go to Avalon to seek help for the horrific visions that haunt her. The Sight calls her to Avalon, where she meets Morgan, a woman of questionable parentage who is destined to become her rival. As Guinevere matures to womanhood, she gains the powers of a priestess, and falls in love with a man who will be both her deepest love and her greatest mistake.

Just when Guinevere is able to envision a future in Avalon, tragedy forces her back home, into a world she barely recognizes, one in which her pagan faith, outspokenness, and proficiency in the magical and military arts are liabilities. When a chance reunion with her lover leads to disaster, she is cast out of Northgallis and into an uncertain future. As a new High King comes to power, Guinevere must navigate a world of political intrigue where unmarried women are valuable commodities and seemingly innocent actions can have life-altering consequences.

You may think you know the story of Guinevere, but you’ve never heard it like this. Listen and you will hear the true story of Camelot and its queen.

Fans of Arthurian legend and The Mists of Avalon will love Daughter of Destiny, the first book in a historical fantasy trilogy that gives Guinevere back her voice and traces her life from an uncertain eleven year old girl to a wise queen in her fifth decade of life.

Visit Nicole on her website at


Judith Ashley said...

Thanks for joining us today, Nicole. Your story about Guinevere is intriguing. I love The Mists of Avalon - actually all of Marian Zimmerman Bradley's books. Who did your cover? It is very well done and certainly evokes the mood of your story.

Lynn Lovegreen said...

I've liked Guinevere ever since I saw Camelot as a girl, so have to find this book! :-)

Sarah Raplee said...

Your take on Guinevere's story sounds fresh and exciting. Beautiful cover!

Nicole Evelina said...

@Judith Ashley - Thanks for having me. Jenny Quinlan at Historical Editorial did my cover. She's amazing! She's doing all my covers for the foreseeable future. You should see what we have planned for the second book!

@Lynn Lovegreen - Me too! I'm so excited that you're interested in my book!

@Sarah Raplee - I hope it is. Thanks for the compliment!