Nici’s Christmas Tale by Jean Gill
Today I am thrilled to be part of the Blog Tour for Nici’s Christmas Tale by Jean Gill. Thank you to Anne Cater from Random Things Tours for the tour invite and copy of the book, which I have reviewed honestly.
A stand-alone short story in the multi-award-winning Troubadours Quartet series
1157: Aquitaine At midnight on Christmas Eve, while the blizzard blasts snow through every crack in the castle walls, Nici the Shepherd’s Dog stands guard in the sheepfold.
Beside him as usual are his pack and the flock they protect but this night is not usual at all. A small boy braves the snowy night, seeking the protection of his great friend while he is banned from his parents’ quarters in the castle.
Nici recalls other times and other dangers, his trials and failures, the reasons why he ran away with a young girl, now the little boy’s mother. He would still give his life in a heartbeat for Lady Estela. And yet, on this snowy night, he cannot help her. So, while he waits and comforts Estela’s son, he tells his own puppies the story of a dog’s life
This festive short story is set in the 12th century in Aquitaine on Christmas Eve.
A story is told by Nici, to his pups of how he grew up to be the guardian of a flock of sheep and his harsh yet brave journey through life.
Outside a blizzard rages and the reader is really given a feeling of the extreme cold. A young boy, Musca from the castle joins them, he is scared of the harsh weather and turns to his friend Nici to keep him safe. There is a deep feeling of unease coming from the adult humans in the castle and the animals pick up on this. The puppies have heard the story before and wallow in the comfort of their father’s words and their mother’s warm fur.
An extremely well-researched insight into the world of medieval shepherding as well as the natural instincts passed on from dogs to their offspring. It is a beautiful portrayal of the loyalty, bravery, and compassion every dog has for his master.
An absolute joy for any dog owner. Nici’s story is educational and uplifting. A wonderful Christmas read.
About The Author
Jean Gill is a Welsh writer and photographer living in the south of France with two scruffy dogs, a beehive named ‘Endeavour’, a Nikon D750 and a man. For many years, she taught English and was the first woman to be a secondary headteacher in Wales. She is mother or stepmother to five children so life was hectic.
Publications are varied, including prize-winning poetry and novels, military history, translated books on dog training, and a cookery book on goat cheese. With Scottish parents, an English birthplace and French residence, she can usually support the winning team on most sporting occasions.
You can sign up to Jean special readers’ group here for exclusive news, offers and a free book and follow Jean on Twitter @writerjeangill.