Gemma Calvertson and the Forest of Despair


Gemma Calvertson and the Forest of Despair

The Aepistelle Chronicles Book 1

by Ryan Hoyt

Genre: Epic Fantasy Adventure 

A heroine’s first adventure. A kingdom’s last hope.

Gemma spends her days studying a war her father fought in before her birth, but she realizes that not everything is what it seems. When she sets off to interview an aging hero, she learns about an emerging threat to the kingdom prophesied by the forbidden factions of magic and religion.

Since she can’t go to the officials without incriminating her new friend Richard, they must set off together on a journey through an uncanny forest to confirm and neutralize the threat. Can they forge new alliances and defeat the forces of evil without the use of magic or the might of a military?

If they fail, everyone they love will perish.

The Forest of Despair is the first book of the Aepistelle Chronicles, a new series of epic fantasy adventures following an emerging heroine and her team of sidekicks, including a witch with an army of children, a young homeless seer, a giant ogre, a boisterous stage performer, and an all-female crew of pirates.

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Ryan Hoyt is a San Francisco Bay Area native and has lived, studied, and worked there his entire life. His love for creepy and fantastic stories was nurtured early on by his mother, who let him watch the TV miniseries adaptation of Stephen King’s It at six years old.

Ryan's debut novel,Gemma Calvertson and the Forest of Despair, is the first book of the Aepistelle Chronicles series of fantasy adventures and releases November 1, 2021. A prequel novella,The Witch of Ferathan, is available now, and more will be released in 2022 and beyond. A post-coming-of-age short story, "Freddy Goodman (Ain't No Good Man)" is also available in eBook and paperback. The gothic horror tale Raventree Hollow follows in the summer of 2022.

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  1. This sounds fascinating. Family history can lead to so much.

    1. Thanks Debby! Yes, Gemma sets out to learn more about the traumas of her father's past, but she soon finds that she shares a lot of her father's strengths as well. Thanks for checking out the post and possibly even the book! Take care.

  2. Hi Ryan! Gemma sounds like she will be a great emerging heroine and The Forest of Despair sounds like a great backdrop for her adventure! I can't wait to get started reading your book! Thanks for sharing it with me and have a great day!

    1. Thank you, I hope you'll enjoy it and all the characters Gemma meets along the way. The large cast of supporting characters ended up being my favorite part of writing this particular story! Take care.

  3. Replies
    1. Thank you, Andrew! I wanted to stand out a little from the current indie-published fantasy books I see a lot of while still feeling like a modern fantasy novel. Hopefully my designer and I accomplished that! Take care.

  4. I like a quest story. Epic Fantasy is a favorite.

  5. I love the cover! I like the colors and graphics.

  6. I love the cover! and this sounds really good. Adding to my wishlist. Thank you!


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