Autumn is a travel and fiction writer currently based in Maine where she lives in a yurt with her husband and lovable Cairn Terriers. Her work is featured on the adventure travel website No Map Nomads where she is the co-editor and writer (and also known as Weifarer). She is also a member of Guild of Dreams, which features her blog posts as well as those of eleven other fantasy writers.
With a Bachelor of Arts degree from Bucknell University in Studio Arts and English, Autumn once considered a career in illustration. After a few years of selling paintings while working as the manager of a gallery and custom framing store, a party and fine gifts store in Virginia, working retail at a gourmet kitchen store, being the head embroider at college clothing store, and finally waitressing for a year, she decided to head back to University. After two years of intense science courses, this career path change led to a Master of Science degree in Ecology and Environmental Sciences from the University of Maine in Orono. Since graduating with her M.S., Autumn has worked for the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service.
A wanderer at heart, Autumn’s desire to travel has led her to France while still in high school, a year abroad in Manchester, UK which led to excursions in Wales, Scotland, Ireland and around many parts of England, and more recent trips with family to Mexico (both the Pacific and Gulf of Mexico sides), US Virgin Islands, British Virgin Islands, Bahamas, Spain, Gibraltar, Morocco, Costa Rica, Saba, Barbados, St. Lucia, St. Maartin, and four Canadian provinces. She has plans for many further adventures both real and fictional.
Where to find Autumn Birt online
Rule of Fire
by Autumn Birt
Series: The Rise of the Fifth Order, Book 2.
Approx. 111,020 words.
Published on June 19, 2013.
Six friends stand alone against the combined Orders of Fire, Water, Air, and Earth, protecting a girl whose forbidden abilities have condemn her to death. Now they are joined by a man who was once the Curse, the Church's most powerful weapon and Ria's greatest threat. Left with no name and no memory, the decision to aid this stranger will cost friendships and more.
by Autumn Birt
Approx. 23,100 words.
Published on December 2, 2012.
Explore the best moments, mischief, and mayhem from the adventure travel website No Map Nomads. Whether by boot, by (motor)bike, by boat, or by whatever it takes, Raven and Weifarer will take you along to experience trips from sublime to nearly disastrous. With serendipity tucked into the saddlebags along with some capricious Peligros, every turn leads to the unexpected.
Born of Water Novel Companion
by Autumn Birt
Series: The Rise of the Fifth Order, Background Information.
Approx. 26,670 words.
Published on August 12, 2012.
The epic fantasy novel Born of Water races across the world and cultures of Myrrah. Learn more about these intriguing and unique places in this Novel Companion. Details on the various races, cities, elemental abilities - including the forbidden gift of magic - as well as "Day Before" stories for the main characters are contained within the Companion.
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Smashwords book reviews by Autumn Birt
- Storm Dancer (Dark Epic Fantasy)
on April 07, 2013
I actually first saw this book in a stack at my mother-in-laws. I loved the cover and read the back blurb, finding myself intrigued. The story line lingered in my mind long enough that when I ran into Ms. Hall on Twitter, finding Storm Dancer tantalizing me once again, I knew I’d read it.
What drew me to this novel was the setting: a fantasy story set in the desert. Plus, I was intrigued by the main character of Dahoud being both the hero and the villain, a man plagued by inner evil that he seeks to control. As a writer, I had to see how Ms. Hall pulled that off. She does it brilliantly.
The setting of a harsh desert country beset by drought, during a time equivalent to our bronze age, is rich and well written. Neighboring counties are a threat, even when it is assistance they send rather than war. Merida is such a beneficial ambassador, sent to help a land considered primitive by her refined homeland. The plotting of a corrupt government quickly entangles Merida far from home and without aid. She has only her wits and ability to call rain to keep her somewhat safe.
There are many great characters in the novel and each are unique in their failings and strengths. The interweaving stories along with what would seem to be inconsequential details thread together to impact the ending - a feature I admire in a story and author. The twists in the plot left me surprised. I never really knew where the story would go next, which was lovely.
As others have written, the novel is graphic with both torture and rape. Oddly though, I agree with others in that I think one of the few failings in the novel is that it could have been darker yet. The one time that Dahoud’s djinn wins its battle of lust and conquest, the scene is quickly glossed over. Most of the time, Dahoud wins over his demon with only hints of the time in his life where it had ruled. I would have loved a larger moment or at least a longer after effect of guilt when Dahoud succumbs to his inner evil.
I would have also loved some insight to Merida’s thoughts at the end of the novel, especially when she makes the final choice she does in the story. The ending to me was very believable as she changes during the course of the story, but I would have liked to hear that final epiphany from her.
Lastly, I would have loved a map to visualize the world, though directions and landmarks were consistent enough that I felt familiar with the landscape and cities. But a map to look at while reading would have enhanced my experience.
I will read this novel again in the future. I am a very fast reader, so the story length was great for me (it took more than a day, yeah!). However, it pulled me in so tightly, I raced through it finding it hard to put down. I want to go back without that need to see what the next page or chapter holds and really enjoy the setting and story!
on June 23, 2013
Timeshaft is a great story with lots of action and drama. Stewart does a great job of tying up the complicated ends that time travel creates from the opening event to revealing the mystery of Ashday’s Child. The story is entertaining and fast paced, weaving through the past and present of a scifi version of our world, making you wonder where the destiny of the human race will lead. I think we already need WorldSave to ensure the future remains bright!
I think the only failings is that I would have loved to have seen the dialogue snap a little more to match the intriguing situations. You just know these characters have a smart comeback, but they tend to stick to the facts. And I have to admit, I kept wondering how people from so many different times had no problem talking to each other. Perhaps I missed a simple explanation that a society able to travel through time can also unravel languages by being too caught up in where the story would take me next.
Timeshaft is a fun read without being too long or too heavy into scientific explanations. All the loose ends are wrapped up (with just a hint of what else could be out there to wonder about a sequel), giving you a sense of happy accomplishment when you reach the last page.
on Oct. 18, 2013
Bladesong is book 2 of the Troubadour series, of which book 1, Song at Dawn with its mix of historical romance, intrigue, and adventure completely captured my heart and imagination. Dragonetz and Estela were characters I could not forget. Overtime, my appreciation for Song at Dawn actually deepened as I remembered the brilliant characters and settings that author Jean Gill had so masterfully created from the fabric of history. So of course, I was very excited to pick up book 2!
Bladesong begins soon after the end of Song at Dawn. Dragonetz has begun his journey to the Holy Land, returning a sacred Torah in an effort to restore his wealth and reputation. But Dragonetz has already been ensnared by politics and factions seeking the book. In fact, the story begins with Dragonetz caught in a trap I felt had no solution. Estela also is facing repercussions from her love of Dragonetz and the feisty though slightly naive woman who graced Song at Dawn is absent in the first few chapters. I really was worried about there Ms. Gill was taking book 2.
BUT, the plot quickly unfolds with many twists. The trouble plaguing Dragonetz that I was certain was unescapable twines through the book until the final resolution in the last chapter. Estela emerges again with her hopes and wits, naive enough to be a pawn but true enough to herself and love to find her way forward, perhaps not unscathed which only deepens her. The ending is everything the romantic in me wanted yet leaves me longing for a final resolution hopefully coming in book 3?
I found this book more solid in following the main plot of the sacred book, Dragonetz, and Estela compared to book 1, which had a few subplots revolving around secondary characters, such as some political maneuvering that only vaguely touched on Dragonetz and Estela. The plot is trim and engrossing. Ms. Gil's writing is beautiful, crafting a historic setting with enough detail to give you a feel for the time without overwhelming the characters. Could my only complaint be Dragonetz is just a little too well known and wanted? But that fits a knight troubadour and though his fame is great, his character is human with fitting flaws.
This is an excellent book with a great story. If you love historical romance and adventure, you must pick up this series!