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Strong Heart by capriox bovidae


“Strong Heart” is a sword & sorcery fantasy about Joana (Jo to anyone who hasn’t pissed her off lately). Jo is female, but her tribe made her officially a man so she could train as a warrior. Now she’s a mercenary guard, and thanks to a job with a magician, life is about to get even more interesting than figuring out how to fake a decent stubble.

Set in a world of river & sea empires surrounded by desert barbarians, where the Classical-era powers are crumbling and new militaristic dynasties are rising, follow Jo as she takes the fight to religious bullies, strange new demons, and anyone else who gets in her way.

Note: Strong Heart is unfinished, and will likely remain so.  It contains some graphic violence and harsh language.

An abandoned novel

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Listed: Feb 21, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

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Editor’s First Impression

By Linda Schoales, editor

Feb 21, 2010: The first chapter is a solid beginning to a sword and sorcery story with a female guard and a young magician who hires her to protect a shop.

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Most Helpful Member Reviews

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Promising Beginning… Going Where?

By M.C.A. Hogarth, author of Earthrise

Apr 18, 2010: Great things about this story:

Textured and real-feeling fantasy world not set in a European forest. I love the multiple religions, countries, languages and belief systems we experience in just 12 installments of this story.

Lots of different kinds of people inhabit this story: husbands, wives, mothers, young adults, kids. This isn’t a world full of teens, or a world of adults mysteriously without families or context.

[more . . .]

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Strong Heart — Strong Writing, Strong Protagonist. Gotta Love It.

By Dora, member

Apr 18, 2010: This is a well-written story with a strong and fascinating protagonist walking a solid, well-crafted world.

Guard Jo has just been hired to guard a merchant’s family and, given the presence of a magician, anything might happen. Can’t wait to see what does.

I’m thinking the fledgling partnership between Jo and Tobias will take them far beyond the town’s walls and into all kinds of mischief and mayhem. It’ll be fun to [more . . .]

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The Pure Warrior

By Ysabetwordsmith, member

Apr 16, 2010: "Strong Heart" touches on one of my favorite motifs in fiction, alternative sexuality. In this case, the protagonist Jo is transgender, a female-bodied person taking a male role in society, because in her culture only men may be warriors. (I was amused by the particular manner in which it was handled: they tell the gods, "so sorry, the child turned out to be a boy after all.") The role is called "dagha pavadkar," which translates as "pure warrior."

Jo leaves her [more . . .]

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