Monday, November 12, 2012

Isle of Shadows by Tracy L. Higley - REVIEWED (releases tomorrow!!)

About the Book:
Enslaved in a world of money and power, Tessa dares to be free. Raised as courtesan to wealthy and powerful men, Tessa of Delos serves at the whim of her current patron, the politician Glaucas. After 10 years with him, Tessa has abandoned all desire for freedom or love, choosing instead to lock her heart away. But when Glaucas meets a violent death in his own home, Tessa grasps at a fragile hope. Only she knows of his death. If she can keep it a secret for long enough, she can escape. Tessa throws herself on the mercy of the Greek god Helios, but finds instead unlikely allies in Nikos, a Greek slave, and Simeon, Glaucas’s Jewish head servant. As Simeon introduces her to a God unlike any she has ever known and Nikos begins to stir feelings she had thought long dead, Tessa fights to keep her heart protected. As an assassination plot comes to light, Tessa must battle for her own freedom — and for those to whom she has begun to open her heart — as forces collide that shatter the island’s peace.

My Thoughts:

The empty street beckoned to her through the open doorway.  She was finished being a victim.”

Tessa serves as the hetaera – or mistress slave – for one of the most powerful men in Greece.  Although she herself wields power and influence over the man himself, her deepest longing is for freedom. She is willing to take her own life to gain the freedom she longs for, and is almost given the opportunity when circumstances suddenly change and she is hiding a body and fleeing certain death at the hands of a society blaming her for a murder that she didn’t commit.

As it turns out, this sudden change brings her in contact with another person seeking change in his own circumstances. Nikos is seeking someone to deliver him to freedom as well, but the man he seeks is already dead.  As he seeks the one person who can help him, he meets Tessa, and they both quickly realize that circumstances have already spiraled out of control in both their lives.

That brings us to Simeon, a Jewish slave who knows freedom in the truest sense.  In the midst of the chaos Simeon, and his family emerge as an unlikely beacon of hope and an early foreshadowing of the redemption offered to all by Yahweh and the coming Messiah. Higley handles this message of redemption beautifully as she sets the persecution of the Jewish people in stark contrast to the empty power of the Greek society and their ancient idolatry.

Tracy Higley does a masterful job of re-creating early Greek society and the powerful struggles of men to rule one another both physically and spiritually. With the great Colossus of Helios casting its shadow over the island of Rhodes, the story of Tessa’s quest for freedom unfolds. Servanthood in ancient Greece was a treacherous position to live within as powerful leaders of the day struggled to gain a foothold amid the ever-widening world stage. For Tessa, the hetaera of Glaucous, the desire to be free proves to be even more powerful and treacherous than those whom she serves!

I actually interviewed Tracy when this book first released as Shadow of Collosus!  You can go HERE to read my interview!

About the Author:
Tracy L. Higley started her first novel at the age of eight and has been hooked on writing ever since. She has authored nine novels, including Garden of Madness. Tracy is currently pursuing a graduate degree in ancient history and has traveled through Greece, Turkey, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, and Italy, researching her novels and falling into adventures. See her travel journals and more at

No comments: