Troy is in crumbling ruin and Athens is rising far to the south It is a time when mortal men and women are becoming gods and goddesses as news of their extraordinary adventures sweeps across the land In this world, Epona, a woman whose life is celebrated in legend, meets Kazhak, a Scythian warrior and prince Their stormy love affair sends them sweeping across eighth century Europe, pursued from the Alps to the Ukraine by Kernunnos a mysterious Druid priest known as the Shapechanger I usually like tales of this ilk but I found this one to be incredibly boring without likable characters The heroine is young, impetuous and rash, jumping without thinking of the consequences I understand why she ran away with Kazhak to get away from Kernunnos but she knew absolutely nothing about Kazhak or his people other than of what he spoke, of which none was even remotely flattering to women With her people, she had prestige and freedom Kazhak s people don t even consider women to be I usually like tales of this ilk but I found this one to be incredibly boring without likable characters The heroine is young, impetuous and rash, jumping without thinking of the consequences I understand why she ran away with Kazhak to get away from Kernunnos but she knew absolutely nothing about Kazhak or his people other than of what he spoke, of which none was even remotely flattering to women With her people, she had prestige and freedom Kazhak s people don t even consider women to be human just possessions It boggles the mind The travel from the blue mountains to the sea of grasses was interminable and torturous to read as was the return journey.Honestly I have no idea why this book has such high ratings A story of Epona, the European Horse Goddess as a real person from Scythia. Admittedly this is a re read for me This was one of my favorite books back when I was in my full blown Celtic Fiction love affair when I was about 15 Oh the good ole days I thought I d see how this story struck me now that I ve read quite a bit of the history that provides the basis for this tale and I have to say it still enchants me Yes the main character is a little two dimensional but if you can get past that the plot is interesting and the other characters are engaging Even in Epona, t Admittedly this is a re read for me This was one of my favorite books back when I was in my full blown Celtic Fiction love affair when I was about 15 Oh the good ole days I thought I d see how this story struck me now that I ve read quite a bit of the history that provides the basis for this tale and I have to say it still enchants me Yes the main character is a little two dimensional but if you can get past that the plot is interesting and the other characters are engaging Even in Epona, the main character s almost predictable traits may be intentional on the author s part because we are talking about characters that are based on mythological constructs In any case, its a fun adventure and interesting love story for anyone who enjoys historical fiction especially historical fiction about obscure little corners of history like I do Not sure what I was expecting with Horse Goddess, but I definitely didn t find it Epona and all the other characters werelike archetypes from history than their own persons The dialogue was stilted is there a reason Bronze Iron Age people couldn t speak in first person and distracting There was so much investment of the religious differences between Epona and Khazak s people that you lose the story for a while.Honestly, I couldn t tell you why I didn t just put the book down I guess Not sure what I was expecting with Horse Goddess, but I definitely didn t find it Epona and all the other characters werelike archetypes from history than their own persons The dialogue was stilted is there a reason Bronze Iron Age people couldn t speak in first person and distracting There was so much investment of the religious differences between Epona and Khazak s people that you lose the story for a while.Honestly, I couldn t tell you why I didn t just put the book down I guess I was just hoping it would get better It didn t I first read this a few decades ago and images from the novel have stayed with me all through my life Llywelyn tackles the legend of Epona and her introduction of the horse to the Celtic people with her masterful, detailed writing so that ancient history becomes something tangible to the reader.While I would have liked to seecharacter development of Epona otherwise, what was the point of going away and coming back at all still, Llywelyn s skill with a pen is far superior to most of the I first read this a few decades ago and images from the novel have stayed with me all through my life Llywelyn tackles the legend of Epona and her introduction of the horse to the Celtic people with her masterful, detailed writing so that ancient history becomes something tangible to the reader.While I would have liked to seecharacter development of Epona otherwise, what was the point of going away and coming back at all still, Llywelyn s skill with a pen is far superior to most of the stuff being published today and it s worth the read However, in my opinion, if you want to read Llywelyn at her finest in regards to the ancient Celtic peoples, pick up Bard you won t be disappointed This book can t decide whether it s to be a historical romance or a fantasy novel set in ancient days Although the inside blurb states that s the way it was it is being exceptionally optimistic since it describes magical spells working and in the real world, magic just does not work I hoped it would feature horsesthan it did but they were merely background players I have to admit that I am not a fan of heroine s falling in love with abusive men. if you can get past the horrible treatment of sex women of this olden days setting the book is very good the first act of becoming a woman was awful read on you will like the rest Enjoyed early Llywelyn s writing energy, particularly this one Intriguing mythic history Have not gotten far in most of her books Library s copy consistently borrowed, repaired, and borrowed Liked to recommend to Jean Auel fans wanting similar stories.Copy still available in regional library. Loved the Keltic and Scythian aspects.