Guest Post + Giveaway with Donnita Rogers

Posted July 15, 2011 by Carmel in / 87 Comments

Freyja and Freaw: sensual sisters

Outrageous women have always attracted my attention and won my admiration. Thus it is no surprise that my favorite goddess in mythology is Freyja, Norse goddess of love and fertility. Freyja dons a magic cloak of feathers in order to fly, when she is not driving her cart pulled by cats. Freyja has the sexual appetite of a nanny goat, and lusts after beautiful things – especially things made of gold. Freyja makes her own decisions and plays the dominant role in her relationships. A powerful, generous woman, her aid is sought by many young girls in love.

When I wrote Faces in the Fire, Book One of The Women of Beowulf, I bestowed the mark of Freyja on my heroine: Freawaru, daughter of Danish King Hrothgar in the Beowulf epic. It is literally a birthmark, a small, perfect feather on the back of Freaw’s shoulder. With that mark comes special power. Witness the following scene of a ritual from Faces in the Fire.

“Blood of the body, blood of renewal, blood of life…”

I began to revolve in the narrow space, trying to keep my eyes fixed on the feather on the ground, but it soon became a blur. The drum beat on relentlessly. I was sweating, my head spinning. Soon I lost all sense of my body and felt lifted out of myself. Had my swans returned?

Yes! I was flying! I myself had become the swan…As I floated weightlessly, I turned my face to look down. Far below me I saw…what was this? Heorot? Heorot on fire – Heorot burning! With a shriek, I plummeted to earth – hard ground rushed up to meet me.

“Come back, Freawaru, come back to us…”

When I came back to myself, Mother was bathing my face with cool water from the pool.

“Freawaru – my daughter – what did you see?”

‘Oh, Mother,” I gasped. “Heorot – Father’s hall – it was burning!”

A shudder passed through the circle at my words. No further words were spoken as Mother and Willa helped me to my feet. Slowly, we began our journey back to the doomed hall.

Beowulf is primarily a tale of men and monsters. My purpose in retelling it from a female point of view is to give voices to the women in the story, and to let the reader more fully experience life in sixth century Scandinavia.

From her roots in rural Indiana, Donnita Lamb Rogers grew into a teacher, traveler and author. A lifelong passion for learning was fueled by her education at Earlham, a Quaker college, and the University of Minnesota, culminating in a PhD in English Literature. She adopted four children before beginning her teaching career in Texas, which included work at the University of Houston, Lone Star College and Kingwood High School, where she used drama and extensive student involvement to bring literature to life.

After retirement in 2001 she traveled the world, then began to research and write Faces in the Fire, a novel inspired by her teaching of the Old English epic, Beowulf. Five years were spent studying materials on Viking Age culture; a trip to Scandinavia offered such “on-site” experiences as crewing on a Viking ship replica in Denmark and climbing funeral mounds in Sweden, all to discover what life might have been like for women in sixth-century Scandinavia.

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For Freawaru, proud daughter of Danish King Hrothgar, growing up in a sixth-century Viking settlement should be a wonderful adventure. Blessed with a strong mother and a loving nurse, she also bears a birthmark that promises future power. Only the arrival of her treacherous cousin Hrothulf, who intends to become a rival for her father’s attention, mars her happiness. But Freawaru has no hint of what is about to come.

Without warning, darkness envelops Freawaru’s innocence and brings unimaginable terror as a night-stalking monster invades the mead hall. When a stranger arrives and off ers his assistance to aid the kingdom in fi ghting the Grendel with magic, runes, and, shockingly, poison, everyone wonders if Unferth can live up to his promises. Meanwhile, two other contenders enter the picture: Beowulf, a boastful warrior who pledges to kill the monster with his bare hands; and Ingeld, a feuding rival chieftain who gives his word to lay aside his thirst for blood vengeance in order to save the kingdom from evil.

Each man presents a challenge to Freawaru, whose path ahead seems unclear. With her survival at stake, Freawaru must decide whom she can trust-before it is too late.

This Giveaway is now CLOSED: Winner

Giveaway Details:

One signed copy of Faces in the Fire: The Women of Beowulf. Must be 13 years of age or older to enter. Open internationally and closes on July 19th at 11:59 PM. Winner will be contacted by e-mail and have 48hrs to respond.

Mandatory Entry:

To enter this Giveaway please be a GFC follower and leave a comment with your e-mail address.

Additional Optional Entries:
*Please leave a separate comment per entry.

+1 Follow on Twitter.
+1 GoodReads Friend.
+1 Like my Facebook Page.
+1 Tweet about Giveaway (use hashtag #midnightsummerfestival).
+1 Networked Blogs Follower.

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Tomorrow’s festivities: Giveaway – Books of choice in the Need series.

About the Blogger
I review Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance books with a focus all things werewolf. Based out of Ottawa, Canada

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Owner, designer and main blogger behind Rabid Reads. Avid book reader, snowboard bunny, video gamer and Supernatural fan. I love all things paranormal, werewolves especially. Oh, and I’m Canadian, eh!

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87 responses to “Guest Post + Giveaway with Donnita Rogers

  1. Please enter me in the draw!

    I’m following you on GFC (Darlene), and my email address is darlenesbooknook at gmail dot com.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  2. +1 like your FB page (Darlene’s Book Nook)

    My email address is darlenesbooknook at gmail dot com.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  3. +1 Networked Blogs follower (Darlene’s Book Nook)

    My email address is darlenesbooknook at gmail dot com.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  4. LOL how ironic I was just talking about Freyja in my last comment that she would be discussed in this post. I think right now she is my favorite in Norse Mythology right now.



  5. Thanks for the giveaway and for opening it to International entries.

    Please enter me.

    I Follow via GFC (buddyt)

    Carol T

    buddytho {at} gmail DOT com

  6. Thanks for the giveaway! This looks like such an interesting book; I read both Beowulf and John Gardner’s Grendel recently but neither said much about the women of the story.

    I’m a new GFC follower.

    susanna DOT pyatt AT student DOT rcsnc DOT org

  7. Thank you for the giveaway! 🙂

    I follow your blog via GFC as Cassia.

    cassia.talkinawhisper (AT) gmail (DOT) com