Spring Blogfest: Shawna Reppert

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Win one Ebook (MOBI or Epub at winner’s choice) of Ravensblood (prequel to Raven’s Wing) by commenting on this post. Also click on the banner to enter the rafflecopter to win a $25 Amazon/BN GC, one of four book packs, or one of four swag packs (US only on book and swag packs).

The pagan festival of Beltane marks the mid-point of spring. It symbolizes the conjoining of the sun god with the earth goddess, a union which will bring forth the fruits of the field and orchard to feed the people. It is, therefore, a joyous festival with much celebration. An ancient tradition, it lives on today in many places and in various forms.

First, a long, straight young tree is cut for the Maypole. To be absolutely traditional, the celebrants would carry it out of the woods without letting it touch the ground until it set upright in the hole that has been prepared for it, a hole that has been wet with water taken from the very source of a stream. (Although both of these requirements are often eschewed out of practicality in modern celebrations.) Before the pole can be set upright, colorful ribbons are attached to the top. The colors used are less important than the number; in order for the Maypole dance to properly wrap the pole, there should be an even number of ribbons.

Then comes the fun part, the dance itself. Participants each take a ribbon by the very end, and face alternately in opposite directions. The easiest way to accomplish this is to count off one, two, one, two, and then have the ones go clockwise (deosil or deiseal) and the twos go counter-clockwise (widdershins). Then the two groups start moving, ducking their ribbons over-under-over, which is most easily accomplished in sort of an in-and-out dance, out to go over and in to go under, interlacing the ribbons. Often there is drumming or other music to help the dance along. When the ribbons are wound to their very ends, they are tied off, and the feasting can begin.
At night, there are fires to honor the flames of the sun, and talking and singing and dancing. Much is made of what does or does not happen on Beltane in the shadows of the woods just beyond the light of the fires. In reality, this would vary depending on time and place and community standards, and I maintain that, as long as the activities are consensual, it is really no one’s business but that of the individuals involved.

In Raven’s Wing, the second book of my urban fantasy Ravensblood series, I chose Beltane as the night for a reunion between two lovers, for both symbolic and plot reasons. The energies at work that night come into play in a way they do not anticipate.

Shawna Raven's Wing Cover Press Kit 500px ©Laura G. YoungRaven struggled to escape the world of dark magic he’d committed to as a bitter young man. Now he must come to terms with both his past and his ancestry. What will be his place in the Three Communities? When he finds himself on the run, trying to find the stolen Ravensblood, the task grows much harder. He must protect the people he has come to care about from the danger of this powerful artifact in the wrong hands, and at the same time prove he is not the thief!

This is the sequel to Ravensblood, and urban fantasy set in an alternate-universe version of the Pacific Northwest. Ravensblood won a Gold Medal in the 2014 Global E Books Awards.

The author’s debut novel, The Stolen Luck, won a Silver Medal in the 2013 Global E Books Awards and a 2014 Eppie.

About the Author:Shawna Reppert is an award-winning author of fantasy and steampunk who keeps her readers up all night and makes them miss work deadlines. Her fiction asks questions for which there are no easy answers while taking readers on a fine adventure that grips them heart and soul. “Definitely give this author a chance,” says one reader, “her storytelling will draw you in. Her style is just a hint of Andre Norton, a dash of J. K. Rowling, and the tiniest pinch of Anne Rice. The rest is her own unique stamp.” You can find her work on Amazon and follow her blog on her website (www.Shawna-Reppert.com). Friend her on Facebook and follow her on Twitter for an amazing array of geekery, including history tidbits, Whovian memes, Trek humor, writing tips, and pics of David Tennant in a kilt. Shawna can also sometimes be found in medieval garb on a caparisoned horse, throwing javelins into innocent hay bales that never did anything to her.

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Buy the book at Amazon.


  1. Thanks for your post bout the Maypole and it’s background. Quite interesting.

  2. interesting post

    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

  3. “… Much is made of what does or does not happen on Beltane in the shadows of the woods just beyond the light of the fires. …”
    I remember being young and wild and feeling a perfect freedom in the solstices, equinoxes, and fire festivals. Since then the responsibilities and deeper meanings behind the days that turn the year have overshadowed the feral mysteries. Thank you for reminding me of younger days. I’ll be thinking of them should I be so lucky to be invited to a maypole celebration.

  4. I put names into a hat and Kami came out the winner! Kami, if you can please email me at evenstar(at)aracnet.com with your preference for MOBI or EPUB, I will send you your book!

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