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Historical Fictions most exciting author, Tracey Higley, has finely-tuned and re-imagined her popular book – ‘Shadow of Colossus’ – to transport new and old fans back to ancient Greece in the updated and revised – ‘Isle of Shadow’.
Tessa of Delos has given up on her dreams of love and freedom. It seems her culture has her trapped in slavery to a politician, and all hope has been forgotten. But a slither of hope returns when the politician is murdered in his home. If Tessa could keep her mouth shut, maybe she could escape and never look back.
When seeking guidance from the Greek god Helios, two young men take pity on her and give her the helping hand she desperately needs. As her allies slowly reveal, they follow an entirely different God, one like she could’ve ever imagined. As her heart softens to love, Tessa has many confusing thoughts to deal with, and an assassination to halt before the islands political stability is shattered beyond repair.
Readers looking for deep, historical insight have found the right book. Tracey travels, explores and studies ancient history to give her books the taste of realism other stories lack. Buying a Tracey Higley book is gives you much more than entertainment; you’ll discover a doorway into a fascinating slice of history and see how God has had his loving hand guiding humanity towards Christ.
Isle Of Shadows by Tracy L Higley was published by Thomas Nelson in November 2012 and is our 16777th best seller. The ISBN for Isle Of Shadows is 9781401687441.
“I’ve loved stories for as long as I can remember. From my earliest childhood there was nothing I liked better then stepping through the pages of another book. From dragons and knights to the wonders of Narnia, that passion has never abated. For me opening any novel is like again stepping through the wardrobe into the thrilling unknown.
“With every book I write I want to open a door like that for you and invite readers to be transported with me into a place that captivates. For me stories that take place in that mysterious nexus between ancient history and myth and faith hold a special place in my heart. I connect with that longing for the mystery, for the fairytale and all that it symbolises in our lives.”
“You know, the ancient pagan world was seeking, they were seeking truth and they constructed an elaborate mythology to try to define their place in the cosmos. Often they came close with glimpses of that truth, and many of them did indeed realise that in the person of Jesus Christ was the literal and historical fulfilment of all that there myths had been speaking about.”
“In Acts 17 we get that wonderful story of Paul speaking with the men of Athens near the altar that they had constructed to the Unknown God. And Paul points to the altar and he says, the one who you’ve been worshiping in ignorance I am now declaring to you. Paul was telling them that all of the yearning of the world before Christ, the yearnings that had been expressed in myth and in story, all of these were now made complete in the person of Jesus.”
“So it’s these people, this Pagan world on the brink of extinction grappling with one man who claimed to be God and whose followers were ending paganism that fascinates me. Who were they, what did they think of this sect that had started in a back water province of Judah with one itinerant preacher and was now was now stampeding across the Roman Empire, changing hearts and changing lives. What was it like to live in such a pivotal time in history?”
“These are the stories that I want to tell, stories of God reaching out to all the nations inviting them into a relationship with themselves.”
“I’ve done quite a bit of travelling in researching my novels and having the opportunity to walk amongst the ruins of ancient Greece, to climb in and around the temples and pyramids of Egypt, to wander the lost cities of Petra and Pompeii, and even the streets of Jerusalem. You’ll find plenty of travel stories and photos on my website. But more than seeing the sights, it’s my hope that in reading my stories you’ll feel as if you’ve walked the desert sands, explored the ruins, felt the white sand and the blue sea under your feet. And most of all, meet with the redeeming God who is sovereign over the entire drama of human history.”
“Bestselling Historical Fiction writer, Tracey Higley, is treating her fans to a revised and updated edition of her popular classic – ‘Shadow of Colossus’. Renamed ‘Isle of Shadows’, the original book was a Christy-award finalist and since then Tracey has written bestseller after bestseller.”
“Set in 1st century Rhodes, the story follows Tessa of Delos, a young slave girl at the whim of a powerful politician. Her culture has her trapped in despair and shackled in hopelessness, but when her master meets an untimely end she finds a shred of hope. Two unlikely men help her to escape, and introduce her to a foreign God and long forgotten dreams of love and happiness.”
“This story is wrapped tight in history, soaked with Greek mythology, customs and culture. It’s fascinating to breathe in those ancient times, whilst also exhaling an intense novel filled with romance, suspense and plenty of twists and turns. If you’re looking for more than just romance, ‘Isle of Shadows’ can offer you stone pillars, white tunics and God’s truth shining through Greek history."
“... Readers will find much to enjoy here: fine writing, suspense, mystery, faith, love, and a new look at an old story.” - Publishers Weekly, prsie for the 'Garden of Madness'.
“With a marvelous cast of interesting and intriguing characters T.L. Higley's ‘Shadow of Colossus’ is a thrill-filled saga that will keep the reader's mind abuzz with wonder at the masterful weaving of her intricate plots.” – Rosalind Stormer, The Rawsistaz Reviewers.
“Romance, intrigue, and suspense are woven together in this non-stop epic that will transport the reader straight to Rhodes. I hope there will be more books of this sort from this incredible author.” – Stacey, Amazon.com review.
“Despite its length at over 300 pages, it's a pretty quick read. I didn't want it to end. Historical fiction is always so more enjoyable than normal fiction.” – C. Widman, Amazon.com review.
“The suspense is intense right through the story and captivates the reader till the last page. T.L. Higley is certainly a skillful writer.” – Carlo Gabbi, Amazon.com review.
“Fast paced adventure, fascinating characters and insights in to the culture, politics and people of this ancient world make Shadow of Colossus a unique and unmissable read.” – Rel Mollet, Amazon.com review.
Historical fiction is great – but those two words contradict each other.
History is a bunch of academics researching to find an accurate account of what actually happened, and is a tough, somewhat boring reading experience. Fiction is a single imagination taking ideas and stretching the limits of possibility and creativity into a believable story, and is an enjoyable, engaging reading experience.
But how much does historical fiction have to thank the freedom to imagine? And how much is actually true?
WHAT’S MADE UP?
In all historical fiction, the author will place their characters in a moment in history. ‘Isle of Shadow’ is set in 227BC Rhodes, seven days before a devastating earthquake. The place is real; you can go and visit the ruins on the Greek island. Tracey has visited it and studied what we know about what those people ate, how they dressed, how society was structured and what the place looked like.
But there is no Tessa of Delos in the history books. The fiction aspect of this book, the part that sprang from Tracey’s imagination, is the characters and the events that happen to them. Ok, so Tracey Higley doesn’t claim to have a past life hidden somewhere in Greek history, she’s just a fiction writer and a keen historian.
WHAT ACTUALLY HAPPEN?
‘Isle of Shadows’ has Greek and Jewish characters, and deals with the darker side of democracy. Rhodes is known to have embraced and stuck with democracy well after other Greek city states and there are many accounts of politician’s back-stabbing and doing dodgy deals under the table. Plus a community of Jewish settlers did live on the island, and continued to for many centuries. So far so good.
Tessa’s character is a Hetaera, an authentic role in Greek society known to be present in Rhodes. Hetaera’s were much more than simple prostitutes. These intelligent women were among a select group that were highly educated, and even actively took part in the Symposia were there opinions were respected by men. They were the only class of women who had independent control over large amounts of money, hence why they had to pay taxes.
Furthermore, the structure of the book is built around a moment in history when an earthquake hit the island toppling the great Statue of Helios, known as the Colossus of Rhodes. One of the ancient wonders of the world, the statue stood approximately 110 feet high (just short of the Statue of Liberty in New York, based on the ancient ruin).
As all authors naturally do, Tracey has creativity and imagination flowing through her veins. Her character Simeon is something extra special she decided to boil up, giving him a biblical tint.
In Luke 2:25-35, it speaks of a man living in Jerusalem called Simeon. Luke describes him as a God-fearing man whom the Holy Spirit assured him he would not die before he had seen the Lord promised saviour. He held that promise in his arms. In ‘Isle of Shadows’, you get to see this character as a young Jewish head servant to a politician as he seeks to see his foretold promise from the Holy Spirit come true.
Historical fiction authors are extremely playful. They juggle history, fiction and faith beautifully. Take ‘the Da Vinci Code’ for example, there is a balance of historical accuracy and wildly made-up fiction that captured millions of reader’s imaginations. Tracey Higley’s books have an added element of faith that demonstrates God’s love in all ages and locations. Taken with a pinch of salt, reading Christian historical fiction will increase your knowledge of history and strengthen your spiritual journey at the same time.
|Author / Artist||Tracy L Higley|
|Publisher||Thomas Nelson (November 2012)|
|Number of Pages||384|
|Page last updated||21st February 2018|