Shioni of Sheba

The Shioni of Sheba series is a unique African historical fantasy / adventure series written for Middle Grades readers, set in the beautiful Simien Mountains of Ethiopia around the 2nd century AD. The series is five books with two further adventures planned.

The suggested reading order is:
The Enchanted Castle
The King's Horse
The Mad Giant
The Sacred Lake
The Fiuri Realms

The Enchanted Castle (Shioni of Sheba #1)

The Enchanted Castle
Shioni of Sheba: The Enchanted Castle, available on Kindle and in Print on Amazon (US, UK, Germany etc), is the first book in the Shioni of Sheba series, and includes illustrations by the Ethiopian artist Senait Worku. We meet Shioni, slave-girl to Princess Annakiya of Sheba, for the first time as the King's forces travel into the Simien Mountains to take over and repair an ancient fortress, Castle Asmat. 'Asmat' means 'black magic', and the name alone should have alerted the King. Little does he foresee the powerful forces arrayed against him in the volcanic massif of the Simiens, deeply cut though by rivers and dizzying valleys, a wilderness that could hide a hundred armies.

The castle site is overrun with snakes, and a rash of strange accidents keep the slaves muttering. But that is only a precursor to the extraordinary events that will overtake the new inhabitants of Castle Asmat. If these signs were not enough, en route from Takazze, the capital city of West Sheba, the warriors stumbled upon the spoor of a huge Abyssinian mountain lion. Shioni tells Captain Dabir that the lion has been attacked by gigantic hyenas - which he does not believe. But grizzled General Getu, he of the one arm and the burned face, overrules the Captain and orders the Sheban forces to proceed to the castle. Dabir decides he will have his revenge on Shioni for her impertinence.

Shioni is swept up in a whirlwind of forces out of her control: from the enmity of Captain Dabir, to the ambitions of Prince Bekele, the Princess' older brother, to her own new-found abilities that begin to emerge to confuse, dazzle and frighten her.

Seen through the eyes of Shioni, a ferengi slave of Sheba, events unfold quickly. She learns that the witch-leader of the murderous Wasabi, who have been raiding the villages of West Sheba near Takazze, has prepared a curse upon Castle Asmat and all who live there. But can she unravel the secrets of the enchanted castle in time to foil Kalcha's deadly plot?

As the Wasabi descend upon Castle Asmat like a mountain storm, Shioni, with the help of her friends Mama Nomuula, the head cook, Princess Annakiya, and the fiuri Azurelle, must summon all of her courage and ingenuity to save the people of Sheba, and all that she holds dear.

The King's Horse (Shioni of Sheba #2)

I just couldn't leave a horse in such a miserable state. Not even in a story. The poor creature! And that was the start of Shioni of Sheba: The King's Horse (available at Amazon).

The King's Horse
“You should have seen what came out of him, Shioni, it was this huge, fat clump of–”

“Ew!” said Annakiya. “No more detail, please.”

“Where did you get that horse?” asked Getu.

“This is the King’s horse, General,” said Princess Annakiya. “He is called Thunder.”

“The mad Arabian?” His brow lowered like a passing storm cloud. “Don’t be silly. Shioni, tell me the truth. This isn’t the same animal you rode back, surely? I saw… no, we have but one horse of his standing. Such royal bearing…”

“Sixteen and a half hands of him,” said Annakiya. “I looked it up in the records.”

“He’s a beauty.”

Ah, but treachery, danger and adventure abound! Welcome to the second book in the Shioni of Sheba series. The King lies in a coma. Princess Annakiya must rule the castle in his stead as her brother, the odious Prince Bekele, has decided to take rulership of the Kingdom into his own hands. But Kalcha, witch-leader of the Wasabi, is far from defeated. 

“Nevertheless, I should leave you with a present,” Kalcha called. Shioni frowned. Could she see a strange shimmering developing in the air above the witch? Or was that the heat? “Consider this… a token of my generosity.”

Shioni could see Kalcha’s lips moving. Her black-clad arms rose in dramatic sweeping movements, gathering power to her breast. The shimmering gathered form and deepened in colour from gold to a smoky midnight blue, the colour of storm clouds pregnant with a deluge. Shioni’s pulse began to throb so strongly in her throat that she imagined she had swallowed a great kebero drum and the drummer was pounding out the rhythm for a thousand dancers.

In this exciting new adventure, Shioni must draw on all of her courage and ingenuity to thwart Kalcha's wicked plans, and return her companions and the King's Horse safely to the castle. But even the Sheban stronghold is far from safe... as she will discover!


  1. I received my signed copy and have finished reading your wonderful book. I have posted my review on Goodreads. I cannot wait for book 2 and 3

  2. Hi Marc, followed your advice and just finished all 6 books of Shioni of Sheba. You’ve done it again! Created worlds within worlds! Magnificent! When can we expect the Storm over Sheba?? Yours Donna Chase

    1. Thank you! I'll be finishing that series I hope after Beautiful Fury this year :-)


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