In The Beekeeper’s Daughter I aspired to transport my readers back to a vintage atmosphere with gothic tension. This novel is mainly set in the late Victorian Era. I chose this period in time partly, because of the challenge it posed, but also to bring authenticity into a wholly believable and captivating story.
The task I set myself was not an easy one. I had to combine a sixteenth century witch burning, fast forward to a Victorian manor house, witchcraft lore and a love story that would revolve around the cottagers, blacksmiths and wealthy landowners.
Annabel, my protagonist, had to be strong and fearless. Jevan is another central character, they are both rebellious having grown up on wild Exmoor in South West England.
For me, Exmoor is an enchanted land and a writer’s dream. A place that is untamed and abounds with beauty, tranquility and wilderness. It has high cliffs that plummet dramatically into the sea, trees that teeter on the cliff edges, rolling moorland and secret valleys. Yet still it retains an unspoiled timelessness. Exmoor is steeped in stories that have been hanging around for generations, along with ghosts of times passed.
This is a tale of love, corruption and dark magic, and gives Annabel the ability to charm bees. In folklore, bees are known to have magical qualities. In olden times when a person died, telling the bees was widely practiced, otherwise the whole hive could swarm. I liked the idea of using bees as a witch’s familiar.
This story charts the lives of three central characters and the love affair that happens between them, although, not everything is as it seems because darker forces are at play. I introduce other key characters and the Antagonist, who has set in motion a chilling plan, with Annabel, Jevan and Alex, his son being the unwitting pawns in his scheme.
The deeper reflection shows that when pushed to the limits, each one of us is capable of light and darkness in varying measures.
ABOUT THE BOOK
Title: The Beekeeper’s Daughter
Author: Jane Jordan
Publisher: Black Opal Books
Beekeeper’s daughter Annabel Taylor grows up wild and carefree on the moors of England in the late 1860s. A child of nature and grace with an unusual ability to charm bees, Annabel follows in the footstep of her mother Lilith, a beautiful witch. With her closest friend and soulmate Jevan Wenham by her side, Annabel’s life is a life filled with wonder and curiosity. But Jevan, the son of a blacksmith, lives his life on the verge of destruction, and his devotion to Annabel probes the boundaries between brutality and deep desire, passion and pleasure. When Jevan leaves Exmoor to pursue an education in London, Annabel’s world shatters. Devastated without Jevan, Annabel is sure her life is ending. But everything changes when she crosses paths with Alexander Saltonstall. The heir to the Saltonstall legacy and son of Cerberus Saltonstall, the wealthy landowner of the foreboding Gothelstone Manor, Alex is arrogant and self-assured—and enamored of the outspoken Annabel. Even though the two are socially worlds apart, that doesn’t stop Alex from asking, or rather demanding, Annabel’s hand in marriage. But when Annabel refuses, she is forced into an impossible situation. To further complicate matters, Jevan is back—and so are those same desires, that same passion and intensity. But nothing is as it seems, and Annabel and Jevan are in grave danger. At risk of being ensnared into the dark legacy of the Saltonstall family, Annabel faces the ultimate test. Will her fledgling powers be enough to save those she loves most? Can she even save herself?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jane Jordan grew up in Essex, England and spent six years in the South West of England living on Exmoor. A trained horticulturist, Jane worked and volunteered for Britain’s National Trust at Exmoor’s 1000-year-old Dunster Castle. The atmosphere, beautiful scenery, and ancient history of the place inspired Jane’s first novel, Ravens Deep, the debut release in her gothic vampire trilogy, which also included Blood & Ashes and A Memoir of Carl. Jane Jordan lives in Southwest Florida.
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