August 30, 2010
Spirit of the Mountain- Paty Jager
Anna Kathryn, Thank you for having me here today to talk about Spirit of the Mountain, my first historical paranormal release.
This is the first book of a trilogy set among the Nez Perce of the Wallowa Valley in NE Oregon. I have sibling spirits and each one has their own story and how they fall in love with a mortal. I kept the day to day life of the Nimiipuu factual and inserted all the fun spirit stuff, which is only a figment of my imagination. While the Nez Perce did believe in spirits and the Creator, I have made up my own sense of how the Creator and the spirits in my books influenced the band and my characters.
Nez Perce were animists; They believed that everything in creation- animals, birds, fish, rocks, trees, stars, plants and all natural phenomena- had spirits or a supernatural side that appeared to humans in visions and could influence them for good or harm. I took this notion and brought good and bad spirits to life in my book. With this ingrained belief in their society it was easy to make my heroine believe in the hero when she sees him for the first time as a man and realizes he is the wolf she has been talking to about her fears.
Blurb for Spirit of the Mountain
Wren, the daughter of a Nimiipuu chief, has been fated to save her people ever since her vision quest. When a warrior from the enemy Blackleg tribe asks for her hand in marriage to bring peace between the tribes, her world is torn apart.
Himiin is the spirit of the mountain, custodian to all creatures including the Nimiipuu. As a white wolf he listens to Wren’s secret fears and loses his heart to the mortal maiden. Respecting her people’s beliefs, he cannot prevent her leaving the mountain with the Blackleg warrior.
When an evil spirit threatens Wren’s life, Himiin must leave the mountain to save her. But to leave the mountain means he’ll turn to smoke…
She knew not of this man. He was not from any of the Nimiipuu tribes. He would not have gone unnoticed. She had heard stories of a band with flaxen hair who lived before the coming of the horse in the area far beyond the River of Many Bends.
Could he be of that band? If so, why was he here, on this mountain?
“Come, Wren,” he bid in a deep, soothing voice.
She started forward at his command then stopped. How did he know her name?
Wren moved a foot backward to step into the trees and run if necessary. “How do you know me?”
“Your friend called you that.” His gaze never left her face. She stared into his eyes, recognition flashed, warming her to her toes.
His presence didn’t threaten her. It puzzled her. Why did he stand in the clearing where she met the wolf? She took a step forward.
“You are called?”
“Himiin,” he said with a slight tip of his head.
Wolf. She stared in disbelief. Was he the wolf?
She gazed into his eyes. The recognition she saw within the depths set her heart racing. How could he be? It was not possible.
“You have received bad news?” His light blue eyes turned a deep blue, showing her he was the wolf she sought.
But how could this be?
She took a step back, unsure of this man and the turmoil within. Her mind grasped at all the tales told by the elders around the winter campfires.
Many stories told of shape shifters and how they showed themselves to only a few. Could her wolf be a shape shifter? If so, could this be a sign about her future? Her heart thudded in her chest. If he truly was the wolf, he knew everything about her, and she knew nothing of him.
“How do you come to be both man and wolf?” Her father always told her she asked too many questions, but this seemed a very good time to ask many.
“I am the spirit of the mountain.” He shrugged.
“The creator has given me the ability to take many forms.”
“How is it you have come to me?” She took a step forward. The warmth of his voice and unguarded stance drew her.
“You came to me. I merely tended my wounds, when you came upon me.”
She gulped in air and choked.
He was truly the wolf.
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