Category: Historical Fiction
Tour Dates: September, 2012
Available in Print and eBook, 448 pages
The tour in May went so well, that were doing it again! Don’t miss your opportunity to read this excellent historical fiction!
Written In the Ashes has been optioned by Mark R. Harris, Academy Award-Winning Producer (Crash, Gods & Monsters) for a TV mini series!
Who burned the Great Library of Alexandria?
When the Roman Empire collapses in the 5th century, the city of Alexandria, Egypt is plagued with unrest. Paganism is declared punishable by death and the populace splinters in religious upheaval.
Hannah, a beautiful Jewish shepherd girl is abducted from her home in the mountains of Sinai and sold as a slave in Alexandria to Alizar, an alchemist and successful vintner. Her rapturous singing voice destines her to become the most celebrated bard in the Great Library.
Meanwhile, the city’s bishop, Cyril, rises in power as his priests roam the streets persecuting the pagans. But while most citizens submit, a small resistance fights for justice.
Hypatia, the library’s charismatic headmistress, summons her allies to protect the world’s knowledge from the escalating violence. Risking his life, his family, and his hard-earned fortune, Alizar leads the conspiracy by secretly copying the library’s treasured manuscripts and smuggling them to safety.
When Hannah becomes the bishop’s target, she is sequestered across the harbor in the Temple of Isis. But an ancient ceremonial rite between a monk and priestess inside the Pharos lighthouse ignites a forbidden passion.
Torn between the men she loves, Hannah must undertake a quest to the lost oracles of Delfi and Amun-Ra to find the one thing powerful enough to protect the pagans: The Emerald Tablet.
Meanwhile, the Christians siege the city, exile the Jews, and fight the dwindling pagan resistance as the Great Library crumbles.
But not everything is lost. . .
Praise for Written In the Ashes:
“A stunning epic about the burning of the Great Library of Alexandria, Egypt from a brilliant young novelist whose depiction of the ancient world is sure to capture the hearts and readers everywhere.”- Mark R. Harris, Academy Award-Winning Producer (Crash, Gods & Monsters)
“Written in the Ashes is one of those rare novels that sets ‘history’ afire, to bathe readers in the glow of a greater, hotter truth. Fans of The Mists of Avalon will find this romantic/alchemical/feminist/spiritual epic equally captivating.” – Tom Robbins, international/ New York Times bestselling author Even Cowgirls Get the Blues and Jitterbug Perfume
“Van Zandt’s vivid description of the Great Library instantly transported me to a lush fifth century Alexandria. Her lyrical writing style and breakneck storytelling kept me riveted to the very last page.”-Robin Maxwell bestselling author of The Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn and Signora da Vinci.
“In her captivating debut novel, Written in the Ashes, K. Hollan Van Zandt brings to life a fascinating and forgotten woman of history: Hypatia of Alexandria, who may have been one of the greatest female minds of all time. If you’ve ever wondered what it was like to walk the streets of long ago Egypt, then look no further. You will be enthralled!”-Michelle Moran, international bestselling author of Nefertiti and Cleopatra’s Daughter
“Written in the Ashes is a story that could have been ripped from today’s headlines. It opens the door into a magical, fascinating and frightening era in our history. With hope, it’s one we will not be doomed to repeat.”-Josh Conviser, Executive Consultant HBO’s Rome, author Echelon and Empyre
“This book has been optioned for a TV mini-series by Academy Award-winning producer Mark Harris (Crash 2005). I cannot wait to see this beautiful story on my TV. Once I started this book I worked my way through it in 2 days. And when I say work, I mean it was a perfect read. It is clear that a lot of research has gone into this book, which is perhaps most beautifully expressed in the description of the Library of Alexandria. Next to a beautiful story, the book also shows respect for the time in which the story is set. As a historical fiction novel it is one of the best I have read in a long time. Kaia has truly achieved creating a story that is both captivating and interesting. With beautiful attention to detail and tradition, it is bound to ensnare every reader.”-Juli, UniverseinWords.Blogspot.com
“The story is extremely detailed in historical fact, but by no means is it dry and dusty. The author manages to weave the facts seamlessly into the exciting and romantic fictional story. So much so, that it becomes difficult to separate the two while reading – it just sucks you right into 5th Century Alexandria. I found myself absolutely riveted while reading this book! I highly recommend this book for anyone that appreciates a strong female character or two.” Theresa Jones, frugexperments.com
What some book bloggers from the tour said:
“There were so many things that I loved in this book. VanZandt does a fantastic job with recreating what it must have been like to live back in Alexandria during the 400s. You can see the sites of the port in your mind’s eye. You can imagine the clothing of all of the different kinds of people that made their way to Alexandria. Historical fiction lovers who want a full bodied experience must read this book (emphasis on the must; this is not optional)!”- Meg, A Bookish Affair
“This story surpassed my expectations. For a first novel it is amazingly competent on every level of craft: pacing, dialog, plot, character, description, narrative, setting, theme, symbol, metaphor, historical veracity. The ending though it wrapped up many of the story’s threads satisfyingly left a few of them for a sequel. I understand this is to be a trilogy and I can’t wait to read the next one. I’m also anxiously awaiting the TV miniseries that is in the works”.- Joy Story
“The first thing I noticed about this novel was how beautiful the writing is. Van Zandt is extremely talented at making what could be an ordinary description of a day turn into poetry. I was immediately drawn into the book and could not put it down because of how well written it was. After I fell in love with the writing, I fell in love with the characters. The scene is set beautifully and I couldn’t help but feel as though I were taken back in time and walking the streets of Alexandria and looking on the wonders held in the Great Library. Overall, this was a fascinating novel and I cannot wait to read the next book in the series.”- Siobian, The Owl Bookmark
“I became instantly attached to the characters and the events that transpired. The characters were wonderfully written. I have to give high praise to the author for the atmospheric world of Alexandria and beyond that she brought to the page. I thought that this was a wonderful read that I would highly recommend. Not only do we get treated to a beautiful view of Alexandria but the story is one that deserves to be told. I can’t wait for this to be brought to the screen”!- Heather, The Maiden’s Court
About K. Hollan Van Zandt:
K. Hollan Van Zandt has always loved libraries, oceans, ancient history and migrating birds. Her mentor, novelist Tom Robbins, instilled in her an abiding love and respect for language.She lives in Southern California, and dreams of a home in Greece. This, her first novel, took ten years to complete.
K. Hollan Van Zandt’s website.
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