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Valerie J Amor

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Larsson's Legend
by Valerie J Amor   

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Historical Fiction

Publisher:  Strategic Book Group ISBN-10:  1612043917 Type: 


Copyright:  2011 ISBN-13:  9781612043913

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Larsson's Legend
Larsson's Legend

A compelling story of human conflict, of international intrigue, and the triumph of the human spirit. Follow the gripping journey of an unlikely sailor who faces seemingly insurmountable challenges as he navigates his life at sea, and in many lands.


Larsson's Legend is now available in Kindle. Go to  http:/

Should a girl fall in love with her brother? Should a boy hate his father? These and other questions are posed in this compelling story of human conflict, drama on the high seas, and soul-stirring romance. Set in the 1870s Larsson's Legend is a romantic adventure which encompasses tragedy, international intrigue, passion and triumphant fulfillment.  This first novel by new Australian author, V.J.Amor will keep you turning pages, and leave you wanting more. Written in the spirit of Catherine Cookson, or Daphne Du Maurier, it is a stunning portrayal of a man in conflict, and yet leaves the reader thoroughly satisfied. --  Brian J.L. Amor

Larsson's Legend is the stunning portrayal of a man in conflict. How can Lars hate his own father? "Why did his heart feel as though it was bleeding; as thoulgh it was filled with  broken glass?" Find these answers and more in this unforgettable book. (Coffs Coast Advocate 11/26.11)

Lars had returned to his ship in a dark mood. Naturally enough his thoughts were occupied for some time by the quarrel with his father. He had sincerely wanted to make peace with the man, if only for his mother's sake. Instead, the opposite effect had been achieved. But this was not the only diappointment that rankled in his mind. He had hoped to make enquiries about Captain Nilson, perhaps even to see him again, but there'd been no opportunity. Once the Emerald Queen left Borgholm, there were no further stopovers. They sailed out of the Baltic and headed for the North Sea, with a bitterly disillusioned Lars on board, who went about his work grim-faced and tight-lipped. Then the weather began to change to match Lars' mood. The sky darkened with heavy belligerent clouds, the slate coloured sea began to heave and swell, and they all knew they were in for a bad time. They were right. If the voyage north in the Emerald Queen had been fair and smooth, the sea intendd to exact a price on the return passage: a price they would pay in fear, in drenched and freezing bodies, and in tired and aching limbs.

The wind howled down from the north, whistling and shrieking around the little swchooner, and it was all they could do to furl the jib and get the fore course in. Lars had had his fair share of stormy weather during his three years at sea, but this one was by far the worst. It raged for two whole days and nights: never showed any sign of abatement, and the whole crew fought together in frenzied desperation. Lars worked until his body was exhausted and his brain numbed with weariness. And then, when they thought it would never end, it was finally over. The night was calmer. There were even one or two stars to be seen, and the following morning dawned clear, though the wind was still fresh. Two more days, and they reached their anchorage.
"That was a bad storm," said Capatain Weaver. "I'm right glad it's over. I was worried, I can tell you."
"Yes sir," said Lars, "it was a bad one. Was there much damage?"
"Not a lot, thank the good Lord. We were able to get the canvas off 'er in time, but we lost some rope overboard,, and some of the lashings gave way on a few casks of herring. Other that that, we're alright. We took a beating though. Everything's wet below. We'll have to haul the bunks up on deck to dry 'em out." The Captain was watching Lars closely. "Ye handled y'self well, lad. Ye proved to be a good man to have on board in a storm, despite the fact that ye seemed to be havin' a bit of stormy weather of y'r own."
Lars seemed not to understand, so the Captain let it drop. "As soon as we unload the cargo you can have a bit of time ashore, if you like," he said. "But first I'd like to ask a favor of you."

Lars indicated that he'd be happy to oblige, and Captain Weaver explained about the tavern, not far from the docks, that always supplied him with excellent rum at a very attractive price. Could Lars please go there and fetch a half dozen bottles? He described the tavern, explained how to get there, and gave Lars the money to pay for the rum. It wasn't very far. He should have been there in ten minutes, but he had his mind on other things. He hadn't completely overcome his negative feelings about his visit home. But the storm had been a kind of catharsis, providing an outlet for his emotions. He seemed more able now to put things in their proper perspective. He was so lost in these thoughts that he must have missed a turnoff, and found himself quite lost. He was in an strange alley he'd never seen before. The gaslight lamps were burning dimly, and his footsteps echoed hollowly in the narrow passageway. He heard other footsteps overtaking from behind. They belonged to a large man: a sailor by his dress, and when he drew abreast Lars stopped him and asked for directions.
"Yes," said the stranger, "I know that tavern well. You're a long way from it, but I'm going in that direction. I'll be glad to show you the way, if you like." Lars was both relieved and grateful. He accepted the stranger's offer, and fell into step beside the big man as he strode down the alley and turned into another side street. The man spoke with a foreign accent, but his pronunciation was good and clear, so Lars chatted with him easily, although he did wonder at the great many questions he was being asked, about his occupatioin, his family and their whereabouts, and Lars answered them all truthfully.

They had arrived at the end of a long narrow street. Lars had no idea of where he was, and the stranger's smooth and pleasant voice, for some odd reason began to alarm him. There was an archway at the end of the street, which they were about to enter: unlighted and menacing in its unfamiliarity, and Lars became wary. He thought he saw a movement, just where the meager lamplight fell near the entrance. Suspicious, he held back, but the stranger took his arm and urged him on. Lars had no sooner set foot in the dark archway, than he heard a sound to the left, and something touched his arm. He pulled away, and turned to leave the inky blackness, when suddenly hands were grabbing at him: strong arms were holding him: voices were whispering: a red light exploded in his head, then oblivion.

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Reader Reviews for "Larsson's Legend"

Reviewed by Lorraine Mitchell 10/25/2011

Reviewed by Valerie Amor 9/14/2011
I'd just like to add a review which was kindly done for me by Janette Bannerman.
"The author is an artist with paint and brush, and it seems that her God-given talents apply also to words that paint pictures with such skill and clarity that I was totally absorbed in the story.n What an adventure! Everyone has heard the cliche comments: amazing book! Couldn't put it down! Amazing, begs to be read! Well, this book certainly deserves such descriptions. I really enjoyed it."
Janette Bannerman, B.A.V.A.Dip.Ed.
Reviewed by Janice Scott 5/30/2011
Larsson's Legend by Val Amor is the delightful, heart-warming story of young Lars Larsson, who at the age of fourteen runs away from his tyrannical father for life on board ship as a cabin boy. Set in the latter part of the nineteenth century, the story moves from Lars' home in Sweden where his mother farms and his father is a tailor, to London, Liverpool, Ireland and Australia.

Lars has many adventures both at sea and on land, adventures which cause him to grow from a boy into a man. Meanwhile, Sarah Kelly, a young mother with a teenage daughter, has to decide whether or not to marry her boss, Alexander Lessing. Alex loves Sarah but his love is not reciprocated, for Sarah's heart belongs to another at home in Ireland.

These two stories entertain and intertwine, taking the reader right into the heart of life on board sailing ships in the 1870s, above and below stairs in a large London house, and eventually to the life of pioneers in the “new” country of rugged Australia.

Larsson's Legend is full of integrity and love, a gentle, beguiling tale in which the characters are moulded and matured through their experiences, both good and bad. Its glimpses of nineteenth century life in different parts of the world and in different situations are thoroughly realistic, and the characters are alive both through their emotions and their struggles.

Just twenty-one chapters long, Larsson's Legend is a perfect read for those dreamy, holiday days of summer and for cold winter nights in front of the fire. I thoroughly enjoyed this first novel by Val Amor, and was sorry when the book finished. I very much hope to see more by Val Amor in this historical genre for which her writing is so well suited.

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