The Necromancer’s Daughter: a novel by D. Wallace Peach

First, a word from Diana:

Greetings, Audrey. Thanks so much for inviting me to join you on your blog to talk a bit about my new book The Necromancer’s Daughter. I wanted to share a little dilemma that I had at the start of the book and how I chose to handle it. It’s interesting to me how certain stories challenge us to try something different.
The first section of the book, The Necromancer, is six chapters long, and it introduces Barus. For most of this section, Aster hasn’t been born, so the story unfolds in Barus’s POV.
Then, the story takes a turn and jumps ahead to section two, called The Necromancer’s Daughter. Aster, as a young woman, takes over the story, and Barus fades from the spotlight.
But I liked Barus, and I hoped readers would like him too. And though he isn’t present for the majority of the remaining action, he continues to be extremely important to the story. How would I keep him present and involved if he wasn’t, in fact, present and involved? Hmmm.
I decided that while he fled the kingdom in search of a safe haven, he would write a letter to Aster, in installments similar to a diary. It was my little dive into epistolary storytelling (storytelling through letters). I’m crossing my fingers that it worked.
Thanks again for having me along, and many thanks to your blog buddies for visiting. Happy Reading!

The word “necromancer” in the title captured my interest. My own writing has given me an acquaintance with such an individual, so I was intensely interested in Barus and how he returns the dead to life. Here is an excerpt in which Barus studies his mother Olma’s book of medicines, potions, and cures, specifically, the chapter titled Death Magic:

double quotation mark open

He turned the page and sighed with relief at the plainly written recipes employing common herbs and natural toxins, hallucinogens distilled from plants growing near his home. The many drawings included black henbane and jimson weed, moonseed and baneberry, all familiar to him. Instructions detailed methods for turning necromantic solutions into powders, determining portions, and administering them with…
He froze. The last ingredient on the list stopped his breath.
Human blood.
He shut the book with a thump. Dawn flung golden spears through gaps in the thatch, and he sagged with fatigue, face in his hands. He’d wasted his time. Olma would never have stolen a life, never poisoned and bled one soul to save another. She must have discovered a different way. He dropped his hands and stared at the cut on his knuckle. Another bead of blood had smeared and dried.
His own blood.
He stroked the book’s leather cover as he grasped the nature of the scars on Olma’s arms, scars she’d never explained. Possibility coursed through his veins and lit a fire behind his eyes. Never again would he lose someone he loved.

I loved this! I loved it because it involves a book of esoteric lore, and names real plants used in magic. And the necromantic ritual is not a simple matter of following a recipe. The practitioner must suffer and risk losing his or her life. The scene in which Barus heals Aster from death is both harrowing and poignant. It is incredibly compelling. And it’s only the beginning of peril and fear for both Barus and Aster, as they are hunted by those who believe them to be abominations.

Book Description:
A healer and dabbler in the dark arts of life and death, Barus is as gnarled as an ancient tree. Forgotten in the chaos of the dying queen’s chamber, he spirits away her stillborn infant, and in a hovel at the meadow’s edge, he breathes life into the wisp of a child. He names her Aster for the lea’s white flowers. Raised as his daughter, she learns to heal death.
Then the day arrives when the widowed king, his own life nearing its end, defies the Red Order’s warning. He summons the necromancer’s daughter, his only heir, and for his boldness, he falls to an assassin’s blade.
While Barus hides from the Order’s soldiers, Aster leads their masters beyond the wall into the Forest of Silvern Cats, a land of dragons and barbarian tribes. She seeks her mother’s people, the powerful rulers of Blackrock, uncertain whether she will find sanctuary or face a gallows’ noose.
Unprepared for a world rife with danger, a world divided by those who practice magic and those who hunt them, she must choose whether to trust the one man offering her aid, the one man most likely to betray her—her enemy’s son.
A healer with the talent to unravel death, a child reborn, a father lusting for vengeance, and a son torn between justice, faith, and love. Caught in a chase spanning kingdoms, each must decide the nature of good and evil, the lengths they will go to survive, and what they are willing to lose.

Purchase Links

AMAZON: US UK CA AU IN

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Apple


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About Diana Wallace Peach:
A long-time reader, best-selling author D. Wallace Peach started writing later in life when years of working in business surrendered to a full-time indulgence in the imaginative world of books. She was instantly hooked.
In addition to fantasy books, Peach’s publishing career includes participation in various anthologies featuring short stories, flash fiction, and poetry. She’s an avid supporter of the arts in her local community, organizing and publishing annual anthologies of Oregon prose, poetry, and photography. Peach lives in a log cabin amongst the tall evergreens and emerald moss of Oregon’s rainforest with her husband, two owls, a horde of bats, and the occasional family of coyotes.

164 comments

    1. Awww. Thanks for the wonderful comment, Jaye. I’m thrilled that you enjoyed the story and that it’s stuck with you. An author couldn’t ask for more. I have a special place in my heart for these characters. Have a great day and wonderful start to your November. Be well and hugs.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks so much for the wonderful comment, Michael. I glad you enjoyed my explanation of my writing challenge and how I managed it. There’s almost always a solution if we’re willing to put in the work and try something new. And Audrey’s introduction was great, wasn’t it? I’m honored. Have a beautiful start to November. Hugs.

      Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks again for sharing and for your comment. Audrey’s commentary on the book was a wonderful surprise this morning, and I couldn’t be happier that she enjoyed the book and characters. Have a wonderful day and start to November. Happy Writing.

      Liked by 2 people

  1. Thank you so much for having me over today, Audrey. And thanks for adding your personal touch to the post. I’m delighted that you enjoyed my rendition of necromancy. “Harrowing and poignant” is exactly what I’d hoped for. Necromancy had to be repulsive on a certain level for it to be so reviled. I’m looking forward to spending the day chatting with your followers. You’re the best. 😀 ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Greetings, Laurie. Thanks so much for stopping by Audrey’s, and I’m delighted that I was able to introduce you to her blog and books. Both are fascinating and she’s a wonderful writer. Have a lovely day, my friend. I hope the sun sticks around for your start to November. Happy Writing. ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  2. I was a part of this tour early on and still check in occasionally, Audrey. I wasn’t familiar with the terms “necromancer” or “necromancy” until I read Diana’s book. It’s funny how I’ve seen them in several other contexts since.

    I also had to smile at Diana’s writing tip on her site today about the misuse of “alot.” I lost count of the hundreds of times my students’ parents wrote to me using it as one word as in, “You keep giving Johnny “alot” of homework.”

    I didn’t say it aloud, but I was thinking, “Maybe I should be giving you “alot” of grammar lessons.😊

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks alot for stopping by, Pete. Lol. You’re comment made me laugh. I’m glad you’ve enjoyed the little jokes at the end of my tour posts. They were alot of fun to pull together. And I’m not surprised that you’ve seen “necromancer” alot since being exposed to the word. Funny how that happens. Have awonderful day, my friend. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  3. I read Diana’s discussion of the structural challenge she had to address while writing the book and how she overcame it. I’m dealing with a similar challenge in my current work-in-progress. I loved the excerpt about the process of necromancy.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks for swinging by Audrey’s, Liz. I was so pleased with the excerpt she picked and her thoughts on the book. A wonderful surprise this morning. Your WIP sounds so interesting as you’ve shared bits of your writing challenges. I think there’s always a solution to our story-telling hurdles if we’re open to exploring options and willing to try something new. Have a wonderful November and Happy Writing!

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for stopping by Audrey’s, Priscilla, and for the kind comment about the book. I’m delighted with the reviews and the wonderful support of our community. Less than a week for your book to hit the shelves. I can’t wait. Have a great day and creative November!

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Sheri. Oh, that would make my day! It’s only 99 cents until the end of the tour (another week). 😀 Audrey pulled together a lovely post, and I’m delighted that you stopped by to check out the book. Have a wonderful day and Happy Reading. ❤

      Liked by 2 people

      1. You’re very welcome. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m just going to pop on over to Amazon and grab a copy now. 😆
        And she really did do a wonderful job, didn’t she?
        Thank you again, Audrey!💕

        Liked by 2 people

  4. I keep saying this, but it bears repeating: this is one of my top reads of 2022! Huge congratulations, Diana, on this wonderful fantasy release. Wishing you every success. Audrey, thanks for hosting Diana today. Hugs 💕🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks so much for the kind comment, Harmony. I was looking forward to my day with Audrey and sharing this aspect of the book. Barus’s disappearance was, for a while, something that troubled me and needed correcting. What we do is so interesting, and there’s always a solution somewhere. Have a beautiful day, my friend, and Happy Writing. 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

  5. I enjoyed the reasons you liked the book, and my reasons were very similar, if not the same. I hope, in the near future, I’ll be able to write a review of this wonderful book.

    Wishing Diana the very best.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for stopping by at Audrey’s, Kymber. I’m delighted to see you here. And I’d love a review whenever you have the time. As you know, even a sentence or two would be awesome. You’re the best. Have a great day and Happy November!

      Liked by 2 people

  6. As a reader, I liked the letters from Barus. I had become vested in him and wanted to know how his life was progressing. More letters would have been fine, too. Those updates made it easy to feel connected to the ending (if that’s a spoiler, please delete the last line!).

    Liked by 3 people

    1. That’s great to hear, Jacqui. His appearance at the end wouldn’t have worked if the letters hadn’t formed the bridge – at least it didn’t feel right to me without them. Thanks for swinging by Audrey’s, my friend. Your tour is off to a great start! Have fun. 😀

      Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m so glad you stopped by, Staci. Audrey picked a great scene to share. For all the good that necromancy could accomplish, I wanted it to be a gruesome process. I’m delighted that you enjoyed the book, as you know. 🙂 Have a great day. ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  7. I’m halfway in, and I have to say it’s a spectacular read. Diana’s writing draws you in, every scene is written with such precision and detail you feel as if you are accompanying the characters on their journey. I can’t recommend this book enough, and I’m thrilled that our weekend will be cold and rainy, the perfect background for finishing her extraordinary tale. She’s a brilliant author. Hugs, C

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Cheryl. I’m over the moon to hear that you’re enjoying the book. I hope the weather isn’t too terrible where you are, but any excuse to read is a good one. Thanks for dropping by Audrey’s place to add another smile to my day. You know just how to make an author happy. Have a great day and wonderful start to your November. Hugs ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I think the method you chose to keep Barus involved was perfect and brilliant. It definitely worked. Thanks for sharing more into the making of this fabulous story, Diana! And thank you, Audrey, for hosting!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for stopping by Audrey’s, Jan. She pulled together a wonderful post and I’m incredibly grateful. Including letters wasn’t something I’d done before, but what the hey, I needed to find a way. I’m glad it worked. Have a great day of touring, my friend. Hugs.

      Liked by 2 people

  9. This is such excellent information Audrey and Diana… the spell craft in this story was so well done. I liked how the characters paid a price for the magic, as necromany is very close to dabbling in the dark arts, even though the spells were done with good intent. No spoilers… but the ending is what really made me love this book. It all comes together perfectly. 💜

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It makes total sense that the process of healing death should exact a cost from the healer. I loved the way Diana handled that part of the story. Thanks for contributing your thoughts, Colleen–and for the follow as well!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. There are many stories about the witches who dabbled in the dark arts during WWII fighting Hitler. Many died unusual deaths. It’s always been suggested their deaths were a direct cause of their spell work. Even though they fought for a good cause, they still paid the price. I have no idea how I missed following you, Audrey. You have a lovely blog. It was a pleasure to connect. 💜

        Liked by 2 people

    2. Thanks for the visit and the wonderful comment, Colleen. I really wanted necromancy to be ghastly and poisonous and bloody and costly… to reinforce the stereotype that it’s evil and justify the Red Order’s beliefs. That was part of the fun when it all gets turned around. And I’m glad you enjoyed the end – that was my favorite part to write. Huge hugs for stopping by Audrey’s today. ❤ ❤ ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  10. Sorry I’m late to the post, more tech woes. Just wanted say that I looked forward to the letter[s] from Barus. I really like him at the start of the story, and it felt very ‘natural’ to follow his side story in counterpoint to Aster’s story. It worked. 😀

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh no. Tech woes, Andrea. I hate those because I rarely know how to fix them, besides rebooting. And occasionally crying and wishing them away. Thanks for taking the time to stop by Audrey’s place, and I’m glad you enjoyed the letters. They required very few drafts compared the rest of the story. Hugs, my friend. I hope you figure out the glitches.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Had to use the old ‘spare’ for about 4 days, and of course, it hadn’t been connected to the internet for years so…spent half my time waiting for Windows updates. -expletive deleted-
        Everything’s back to normal now, thank goodness. How’s the nano going?

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Oh, those updates will kill ya. I use Dropbox and when I have to use the old computer, it take For Ever to sync. I’m not doing nano this year. A few more tour posts and covid has put me behind on lots of other stuff. I’m goin to write, but without any pressure.

          Liked by 2 people

            1. I’m fully vaxed and boostered so it’s a mild case – mostly head congestion – and I’m slowly getting better. I knew it would eventually come around (since my husband is working). It’s been a week of isolating so far. Lots of time to blog!

              Liked by 2 people

  11. The Necromancer’s Daughter is a novel you won’t want to put down. Conflicts can be going on in the obvious part of the plot, but each character has inner conflict going on as well. This makes it hard to get any sleep until you finish reading the book. I was entertained throughout the whole book and loved every minute of it.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for swinging by Audrey’s blog, Anneli. You’re like the gift that keeps on giving. Lol. I do try to give each characters some internal challenges because that feels real to me. We’re all struggling to a certain extent about certain things. I hope that you have a struggle-free evening, my friend. Happy November.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. The gift that keeps on giving … hmm … that’s what we call an STD. LOL I know you didn’t mean that definition of it. But about my comments about your book, I never say things I don’t mean when I praise a book. I would rather say nothing than give false praise. I’m happy to say what I really feel about your book(s). They are great!

        Liked by 2 people

        1. OH NO. I didn’t mean that. Learn something new every day, Anneli. I hope I didn’t say that to anyone else. Well, thanks for starting my morning with a laugh, and thanks for the wonderful comment. We’re expecting snow (possibly). Stay warm, my friend. 🙂

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  12. First off thanks for the great review of Diana’s book Audrey which is now a household word in my house and captures everyone’s attention that walks in on my desk.
    It’s nice to meet you Audrey and your vast talent from writing tips to your latest book that sounds captivating.

    “he kind of writing that disappears into the background and therefore leaves the reader fully immersed in the story”.

    All the best to both of you!!❣️

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for taking the time to swing by and check out Audrey’s post. Isn’t it wonderful. I’ve had a great time hanging out and visiting. And I’m glad you’ve connected. I love your comment, Cindy. What a riot. Have a great evening, my friend. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Hi Audrey, a lovely post. It is great to see Diana featured here with this book. I liked Barus very much and I enjoyed his letters to Astor. He was my favourite character in this book as he was very real and he wasn’t blessed with good health or looks but still managed to achieve and be humane and a really good person and father.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I really liked him too, Robbie, and he’s the one I miss the most from the book. Thanks for taking the time to swing by Audrey’s place and for the kind comment about the book. Have a wonderful, creative day, my friend. ❤ ❤

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  14. I thought that was a fantastic way to keep Barus in the story, Diana. I adored Barus and was glad to still feel his presence even after the story focused more on Aster. Thanks for hosting, Audrey!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks, Teri. It was a structural conundrum that I struggled with until I came up with the letter. It was a little scary layering that element into the story, something I hadn’t tried before. I’m glad it worked. Have a great day, my friend. You had a huge October. Congrats.

      Liked by 2 people

  15. I enjoy reading the different takes on Diana’s fantastic book that I couldn’t put down. And she did an incredible job with epistolary storytelling, which I’m grateful she chose to include because I loved Barus and his big heart, even though coping with his own struggles was tiring. Fabulous book as I continue to repeat and thanks for hosting Diana, Audrey. It’s great to meet you also. Congrats again, Diana! ❤️

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for the kind visit and comment, Lauren. I’m glad Barus’s letter worked for you. It was really important for me to keep him in the story, but there wasn’t enough to fill whole chapters. And glad that you connected here with Audrey. I love connecting bloggers who aren’t only talented but friendly. Have a wonderful Friday and weekend.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes, they are certainly relatable characters. Few of us have had to jump off cliffs or slog through forests to save ourselves, but we can certainly feel for those who must do those things, especially when they are really nice people.

      Liked by 2 people

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