CSFF Blog Tour – By Darkness Hid, Day 1

I first became acquainted with Jill Williamson, author of this month’s CSFF Blog Tour feature, By Darkness Hid (Marcher Lord Press) a number of years ago, when she and her husband still lived in the Los Angeles area.

A small group of Christian speculative fiction writers got together one Saturday afternoon to talk writerly. We hung out together for hours comparing news and notes about the publishing world we were all still learning about.

One thing led to another, and before I realized it, Jill was probing me about the possibility of an edit. We worked out the details, and a few days later she sent me a hard copy of The Last Recruit, a YA suspense with some minor speculative elements.

I don’t know why I requested a hard copy. Up to that point, and ever since, I’d done all my editing on the computer. In this case, however, I was thankful I had the pages because, for the most part, I settled back and enjoyed a good story. I learned from that moment what a wonderful writer Jill is.

Imagine my surprise, then, when her first book came out two years later with Marcher Lord Press—a completely different story in an entirely different genre. By Darkness Hid is the first book in the adult/YA fantasy series Blood of Kings.

Happily, Jill included me as one of those who received a review copy of her book. I devoured the story and posted my review at Spec Faith.

As I said in my recommendation, By Darkness Hid is my kind of fantasy. It’s a fresh rendering of epic fantasy. Jill has done a great job creating sympathetic characters and lots of tension. The story zipped by.

Because I read the book over a year ago, I decided to skim it before the blog tour. As I read the first couple chapters, I soon found myself as hooked as I had been originally, and rather than skimming, I once again devoured the book whole.

I’ve been happy to discover that By Darkness Hid is receiving recognition by others as well. The review in Library Journal said that readers who enjoy Donita K. Paul and J. R. R. Tolkien will like By Darkness Hid. It’s one thing when a writer says, My story is just like C. S. Lewis or some other famous author. It’s an entirely different matter when a prestigious industry publication puts a work on the same plane as one of the greats.

In addition, By Darkness Hid has been nominated for the Clive Staples Award for Christian Speculative Fiction – Readers Choice, the Christy Awards – Visionary Category, and is a finalist in the Next Generation Indie Book Awards. I suspect there are more awards in Jill’s future!

Take a look at what other CSFF members have to say about Jill and By Darkness Hid:

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