The Drowning Land by David M Donachie

3 Minutes Reading Time

I have received this book as an ARC from the author for an honest review.

David M. Donachie is a web designer, a gamer, an artist, a writer, and the happy husband of Victoria. he works in IT and games design.

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Book Cover The Drowning Land by David Donachie

Language: English

Print length: 274 pages

Text-to-Speech | Screen Reader | Enhanced Typesetting

Publication Date: 29 January 2021

Categories: Historical Fantasy | Epic Fantasy

Trigger warnings: Death | Violence

Read the blurb on Amazon

David Donachie is a web designer, gamer, artist, and writer. He works in IT and games design.

He has previously published The Night Alphabet, a collection of short stories. His other books are Dice Wars and The Teuthic Temple.

The Drowning Land is a historical fantasy. The author took his inspiration from the discovery of a barbed antler point in 1931. The Summer Lands in the book hail from the real Doggerland – low marshes and gravel banks, running from the Channel Islands to about the level of the Humber.


The Drowning Land tells the story of the Daesani (wolf-men), the People, and the Seers – all occupying various parts of the Summer Lands.

Tara sees a vision of the Summer Lands flooded by water. This sends her on a quest to try and stop this destruction. On her way, she is captured by the Daesani. She manages to escape but one of the Daesani’s gives chase. Edan saves her, but he also kills the Daesani in the process. Edan and Tara must now run for their lives.

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Tara convinces Edan that they must go north, to the Stone Forest to stop the Fomor from releasing the flood. Their journey is fraught with danger. They encounter earthquakes and floods, and many times come close to starving.

Most of her tribe drown during one of these floods and the few who survived, decided to join the Daesani. But their leader, Phelan, is convinced that only Tara, as a blood sacrifice can save the land from the Fomor. He continues to pursue Tara and Edan, at great cost to his tribe.

During a final confrontation Phelan’s true motives are exposed, and he lose leadership of the Wolf Clan. He escapes his prison and once again pursues Edan and Tara.

The time of the vision has come. The black sun is in the sky, Phelan is still in pursuit, and Edan and Tara is still scrambling to reach Gok’s head from where they can enter the safety of the Winter’s Land.

Will Tara and Edan survive?

What did I love?

I really enjoyed the various tales of the different tribes. It is told as part of their rituals and form part of their traditions and gives us insight into their history and where they came from.

I also love the romance between Edan and Tara. Thrown together through circumstances out of their control they work together to survive and become a formidable team. Since they are from tribes, they each have their own unique skills and strengths to contribute.

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And not so much?

Personally, I’ve found the pace a bit slow, with not much action. But then again, as a historical novel, the aim is to take us back to a different time and place. The author has succeeded with this through his descriptions of the people and places of the Summer Lands.

Should you read it?

This book is not for everyone. Although the descriptions of the people and places are accurate and backed by research, I did find reading the book quite tedious. But as I’ve said, I am more one for action books.

I do recommend the book for readers who likes history – the facts, places, and people from times past. And epic fantasy like The Lord of the Rings or books by Terry Pratchett.

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Meet Susan

Susan van der Walt is an avid reader of genres like crime, thrillers, adventure, and true stories. On Read or Rot she shares her favourite books and quotes with you. She also writes articles, book reviews and book recommendations. She lives in Alberton (South Africa) with her husband, Warrick, and fur baby, Pixie.

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