Haven Keep by R. David Bell
The Dominion arrived in the south smashing all in its path, destroying the Empire of Evenfelle, and carving out an Empire of its own…
The cool thing about the book cover design for Haven Keep, is that it started with an illustration done by the author. That was a first for me. While the author is not an artist by trade, he was able to capture the look and feel of the characters and setting of the book. By enlarging the main character, using a lot of light and shading, and adding texture, we were able to craft a great cover from the illustration. The result, is a cover that fits right in with bestselling fantasy fiction. Here’s what the story is about:
VON, the last in the royal line, lives now as a bond servant and blacksmith in a northern fragment of the old empire. He is torn between his desires to make a new life for himself and thoughts of seeking justice and revenge against the Dominion. The matter is further complicated by his budding romance with ANORA, the daughter of his new lord, BAIDEN.
Von believes his identity remains secret, but Baiden knows exactly who his young ward is. Baiden guards the secret, nurturing Von into adulthood, hoping Von will eventually take his rightful place, and win back the lands conquered by the Dominion.
To the surprise of Baiden and Von, others know his secret as well. The Halfen clan, led by Ky, rebels against Baiden, promising to deliver Von into the hands of the Dominion. Ky recruits additional nobles to his cause and civil war threatens to erupt in the north.
In the frozen mountains an additional threat lurks. The Rift has begun to stir and an ancient creature crawls from its depths.
To combat the multiple threats, Von must rediscover ancient secrets left by the former rulers of the north in the castle shrine, Haven Keep. Armed with a partial understanding of those secrets and united with a remnant of the former army of Evenfelle, Von and Baiden win back control of the north.
Von is consumed by thoughts of revenge, the memory of his murdered family, and his anger toward KY and the other seditious lords. He descends further into darkness, eventually slaughtering Ky and the nobles who follow him. He departs on a path of vengeance, leaving Baiden and his allies to prepare to fight the Dominion without him.