Books Remembered #8: The Ancient Future - Traci Harding
This is a semi-regular feature I had last year where I reminisce about books or even series that I read over and over again. Or even a book read once that changed the way I looked at life. I wanted to re-introduce it as I wanted to highlight some books that have been out for a while and maybe don't get as much attention as the new releases. It’s not a review of the book(s) but merely remembering the impact it had on me and how it’s shaped my reading habits and likes –what made that book(s) memorable. So this month, I'm remembering The Ancient Future by Traci Harding.
A few years ago I quit my job, up sticks and went travelling for six months. I spent most of that time in Australia and New Zealand travelling around, living out my backpack, sleeping in youth hostels and generally have a great time. While I was there I always had a book to read with me and I was generally limited by whatever the hostel I was staying, had on there to swap. One day I picked The Ancient Future by Traci Harding and found a new favourite.
The story starts with Tory’s car breaking down in the English countryside late one night and her deciding to spend the night in the circle of standing stones nearby. Once there something happens and she finds herself in the distant past and faced with a roaming band of knights who suspect her of witch-craft. From there the plot moves fast and covers romance, family betrayals, magic, time travel, philosophy, action, eastern martial arts, soul mates and gods. I loved it! It hit all my favourites in one – romance, fantasy, history, time travel complete with a strong female lead and a dashing prince. It was even set in Wales where I went university.
When I finished the book I could barely bring myself to put it back on the swap shelf so I went out and bought a copy and shipped it back home. I then proceeded to collect the rest of the trilogy (I was so happy to find out it was a trilogy!) – An Echo in Time and Masters of Reality and devoured them over the next two weeks. Turns out Traci Harding is fairly popular down under – in one of those top 100 favourite books as chosen by the public, The Ancient Future appeared high on the list. The books always remind me of that time of my life and the stories are still ones I like to reread regularly. My one regret...Traci Harding isn’t published in the UK so I struggle to continue to buy her books – in this regard even Book Depository doesn’t have many!
So if you’re far from home and want a comfort read, The Ancient Future is one I would recommend!