When I was considering Queen Fastrada’s story for my third book in the days of Charlemagne, I knew it would be different from anything else I had written—and that was a good reason to do it.
My heroine and antagonist, Fastrada and her stepson Pepin, were real people, and I needed to tread carefully. Fortunately for this novelist, not much is known about them, and the history has gaps that an author can fill with whatever best suits the story.
And now after several years, on and off, of research, writing, and revising (and revising again and again), I am proud, excited, and thrilled to announce my third novel is out in ebook and print. In Queen of the Darkest Hour, Fastrada must stop a conspiracy before it destroys everyone and everything she loves.
The story opens in 783, the day before her wedding to Charles, king of the Franks and a widower with seven children and an eighth on the way by a concubine. Fastrada is haunted by the Saxons’ attack on her home fortress, and more wars loom. Yet her greatest peril lurks within the castle walls: Pepin, Charles’s son by his embittered former wife. Blaming his father for the curse that twisted his spine, Pepin rejects a prize archbishopric and plots with his uncle and mother to seize the throne.
Based on historic events during Charlemagne’s reign, Queen of the Darkest Hour is the tale of a family conflict endangering an entire country—and the price to save it.
Queen of the Darkest Hour is available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iBooks, and Smashwords. If you’d like a preview before you decide, you can read an excerpt and the first chapter at kimrendfeld.com.