Hi all! To celebrate the upcoming release of YA Fantasy Allerleirauh by Chantelle Gadoury I am going to be sharing with you an exclusive excerpt as part of the book blitz for the book. I’d like to thank Chantelle herself for personally asking me to be part of this book blitz.
“If you ever decide to remarry, you must marry someone who has my golden hair.”
The words echoed in my ears as my mother murmured them to my father. The entire court had gathered there with us in that darkened room with stone walls covered in old tapestries of red and golden threads, watchful eyes of men and women looming over us from the walls.
My mother, the königin, the queen of Tränen, was dying.
Servants had lit candles across the room, creating a gloomy, death-like ambiance. The only source of light came from the flames, curling out like a snake’s tongue from the fire place. Many of my father’s councilmen stood murmuring while they waited for the queen’s end to come. They waited for death’s dark cloak to wrap around her like the cape of the goddess, Nótt.
Mother lay in her bed, her form still as her breaths became shallower; her lungs becoming less full of air. Her hair, like spools of golden thread, clung to her pale skin. My father’s hand brushed over her forehead, pushing the strands away. She lifted her hand, touching his, seeking an answer from him.
The contrast of her skin against his was shocking. She was pale—corpse-like, the tips of her fingers already turning a frosty shade of blue. My father kneeled, dressed in a white tunic and tan hunting trousers. His light brown beard seemed thicker than usual. His tired blue eyes, the same eyes that others often commented reflected my own, gazed upon my mother.
He was a handsome man for other women to admire.
He carefully grazed his lips over her knuckles. I could hear his soft murmuring.
“My wife. My poor, lovely frau.” There had been talk that he had been by her bedside for majority of the night and all through the morning, while I had been kept in my chamber. I was to wait until the end was nearly at an impassebefore I was to bid my mother farewell. He had waited upon her on bended knee. It was an unexpected display of affection. My father had never been the affectionate sort, and especially never with me in all my nineteen years.
His gaze drifted toward the line of young maids surrounding the queen’s bedside, all waiting for an order or request. He lifted a hand and beckoned one of them closer. With reddened cheeks, one of the maids took a step toward the bed, offering a warm, wet rag for my mother’s forehead.
My father’s eyes seemed to taunt the maid to come closer as they glittered in the candlelight, a small, amused smirk on his lips as he held out his hand. He knew his effect on women, as did my mother. My father seemed to have always found a strange delight in tantalizing the young women of the court right under my mother’s nose–especially the young maids of the castle. His wandering hands had been an unacknowledged topic between them, and yet had most haunted my mother in her own private chambers.
As I was guided away from my tutoring lessons earlier in the afternoon, I found many of my father’s councilmen murmuring in the hallways. Their conversation had rattled me as they spoke of the queen’s declining health, proclaiming quite loudly their uncertainty of the future of the königreich, the kingdom. With no male heir, there would be no one with my father’s bloodline to carry the crown. If he were to die, the succession would be uncertain, leaving the kingdom without a könig, and I would be left with nothing.
Allerleirauh by Chantelle Gadoury
Published by Parliment House Press
Released 22nd August 2017
In the Kingdom of Tränen, a king makes a promise to his dying wife that he’ll only remarry a woman who possesses her golden hair. In time, the king’s eyes are turned by his daughter. Realizing her father’s intentions, Princess Aurelia tries to trick him by requesting impossible gifts: dresses created by the sun, moon and stars, and a coat made of a thousand furs. But when he is successful, Aurelia sacrifices her privileged life and flees her kingdom, disguised by the cloak and a new name, Allerleirauh.
She enters the safe haven of Saarland der Licht, where the handsome and gentle Prince Klaus takes her under his care. Hoping not to be discovered by her father’s courtiers, Allerleirauh tries to remain hidden under her new identity when she finds unexpected love with Prince Klaus, even though his arranged marriage to the princess of a neighboring kingdom approaches. Risking everything, Allerleirauh must face her troubled past and her fears of the future along her journey to self-acceptance in this triumphant retelling of the classic Grimm Fairy Tale.
Chantal Gadoury is a young author who currently lives in her hometown, Muncy PA. She enjoys to paint, drink a good cup of coffee when she can and enjoys her favorite Disney classics. When she’s not busy crafting or reading, Chantal is dedicated to her family: A Mother, sister and a furry-puppy-brother (and sends a prayer to her Dad, who now resides in heaven.) As a 2011 college graduate from Susquehanna University, with a degree in Creative Writing, writing novels has become a dream come true!