Promised Valley War is the second book in Ron Fritsch’s four-novel Promised Valley series set in prehistoric times.
Blue Sky, the farmer’s son who led the rebellion in the first book, and Wandering Star, the young hunter who became his lover, realize they and their peoples will suffer for the high treason they knowingly commit every moment they spend together, “consorting with the enemy.” They, along with the others among their peoples most curious about their “eternal” enemies and most willing to treat them as their equals, nevertheless set the stage for what they’ve feared more than anything else: another horrifying war.
Reviews (clicking on the review website will take you to the full review):
Reader Views: “It is the story’s prehistoric setting that provides the basis for the intellectual question which binds the Promised Valley books together: ‘Could civilization and history, with their countless heaven-sanctioned wars and genocides, have begun differently?’ With that as his touchstone, Fritsch thoughtfully and compassionately offers answers through the story and its characters. . . . In writing this multi-faceted novel, Fritsch masterfully layers and blends several literary devices—intellectual twists and turns, enigma, allegory and parable—to create a story rendered in both intricate detail and simple wisdom. Even through the vivid telling of epic war and death, Fritsch employs both fantasy and genuineness to connect with and uplift the reader. . . . While Promised Valley War is an adventurous tale on its surface, it is not what it seems to be; it is much more. For me it was a book of revelations. For anyone who has never lost their child’s heart and imagination, Promised Valley War will compel them to consider all that the book has to say to them. That’s what unforgettable books do.”
Kirkus Reviews: “The author’s well-rendered descriptions of the creeping onslaught of war and winter give the reader a visceral feel for the endangered paradise that can occur despite the best intentions of the best people, and readers will be surprised by the twists he gives his tale. Alongside the careful plotting and natural-sounding dialogue, there’s a refreshing amount of deeper resonances in the Promised Valley series, a steady undercurrent of commentary of the present day. The treatment of the young hero Blue Sky’s attraction to other men, for instance, is straightforward but nonconfrontational, and characters at several points grapple with their society’s primitive theology. ‘Could gods who were good-hearted … allow humans to go to war with one another?’ the narrative at one point asks. ‘[I]f they, like humans, had no choice in the matter, why did humans call them gods?’ The novel will leave readers eager to find out what happens next in Promised Valley. Luckily, Fritsch has plans to add two more volumes to the series. A captivating novel that will transport readers back to prehistory times—while reminding them of their own.”
Feathered Quill Book Reviews: “Promised Valley War is an imaginative and well-crafted piece of fiction. The plot features plenty of action and unexpected twists and turns. . . . The balance of suspenseful battles, sweeping scenery, and interpersonal drama would undoubtedly be a satisfying mix on the big screen. Are you listening, Hollywood?”
The US Review of Books: “With lyrical description, historical era awareness and an understanding of human motivation, Fritsch brings to life a prehistoric world and the vicious rivalry between two tribes competing for resources. . . . Written with tenderness and vivid detail, this prehistoric Romeo and Juliet tale adds complexity and variety to the bard’s tale as well as to the author’s first novel in the series, Promised Valley Rebellion.”
Promised Valley War was the first-place winner in the Gay/Lesbian Fiction category of the 2011 Reader Views Awards competition, the winner of the bronze medal in the Literary Fiction category of the 2011 eLit Book Awards competition, the winner of a finalist medal in Gay/Lesbian/Bisexual/Transgender Fiction category of the 2012 Next Generation Indie Book Awards competition, the winner of the silver medal in the Action Fiction category of the 2012 Readers Favorite Awards competition, and a finalist in the Gay and Lesbian and Transgender Fiction category of the 2012 National Indie Excellence Awards competition.