The Official Website of The Tellings of Xunar-kun Series!

YA / Adult Science Fantasy Series by Tina Field Howe

~ Book One: Alysa of the Fields
~ Book Two:
The TrailFolk of Xunar-kun

~ Book Three, in development: The Monx of the Roaming Star

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Reviews of Book One, Alysa of the Fields


Fantastic! This is the story of an ordinary girl who is called away from her life and made to do extraordinary things. The action is fast-paced, and it all takes place in a world that comes alive before our eyes. From beginning to end, I was thoroughly engrossed in this story.
Alysa is an excellent character, and I think what makes her so believable is her total relatability - here is a girl just like you and me, put into extraordinary circumstances, and reacting to them in a believable way.

Review by World of Fantasy.


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The supporting cast of characters are also quite strong; in particular, their backstories that are gradually revealed add a lot to the book.

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Book trailer on Reader Views

The amazing thing about this book is that, while it is firmly a fantasy story, it's also so much more. It's a cautionary tale about our own world. It's a scientific exploration. It's a character study, and a survival manual. I think girls and boys alike will find themselves engrossed in this book; the plot, the world itself, and the people who inhabit it are all intriguing and well developed.

Judge, Writer's Digest 15th Annual Self-Published
Book Awards

There is a lot of literature supposedly geared towards adolescents that should – and hopefully will – find its way to the bookshelves of adults as well, and I believe Tina Field Howe will join the ranks of J.K. Rowling, Stephenie Meyer, Cornelia Funke and the likes shortly.

Olivera Baumgartner-Jackson
for Reader Views
Reviews, by readers, for readers

Tina Field Howe writes so exquisitely... “Alysa of the Fields” will enrapture you and you will be unable to put it down. Readers who enjoy post-apocalyptic events, cultural exchanges and unlikely heroes, will almost certainly enjoy this book. Be sure to read Book Two in the “Tellings of Xunar-kun.”  

Ian McCurley for Reader Views Kids
Reviews, by kids, for kids

Read the interview by Tyler Tichelaar


If you've read AOTF and would like to post a comment on the Reader Views Kids blog, please click either link above.

Once in a while you come upon a book the literally knocks your socks off. I did not expect that in reading Alysa of the Fields and the second book, The TrailFolk of Xunar-kun. The two books are needed to be marketed together. Yes, these books must be read in order. More importantly, is the utter delight you gain from reading these two wonderful novels. more...

Teri Davis,

The novel is a very quick read that I would recommend to any lovers of fantasy. It features a very unique setting and plotline and captivates the reader with strong character development, a fascinating culture, and, of course, romance. I'd really like to see this author, Tina Field Howe, receive wider recognition for her work, and now that her book is published, it is important that young adults, especially those that appreciate and understand literature, buy her book. So, please set aside some money and purchase the book, see if you like it, and if you do, tell someone about it.

Associate of ScientiFish Pictures

Where films roll online and legends roll in their graves.

From a e-mail message dated April 30, 2007


I loved your book. It was the first fantasy I've ever read and I am so glad your book was the first. Even if readers don't like fantasies, they'll find the story engrossing and the characters so memorable.

Francine Silverman

Author of Book Marketing from A-Z

From a letter dated February 27, 2007


If the test of a book for youngsters is that it will hold the interest of older readers, you have surely passed that test. You created a fascinating world of Xunar-kun. Alysa's adventures take place in a physical, social and political environment that raises many points for discussion.

Bill Jaker, Off the Page

WSKG Public Radio 
Binghamton, NY

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In an e-mail message dated February 26, 2007


Tina has hit a home-run with her new book. It is engaging and well-paced. I would certainly recommend it to anyone who wants to sit down and have a good read. Can't wait for the next one!

Anne Mage, StoryLines Bookstore & Cafe

Watkins Glen, NY

As Published in the Wellsboro Gazette, January 31, 2007


I believe strongly in promoting local authors, and Tina Field Howe makes this easy. Tina is located in Corning, NY, and has a beautiful website showcasing her many talents as artist, illustrator, graphic designer, writer, and editor. She works with media as diverse as stained glass to screenplays. Most recently, I have had the pleasure of becoming absorbed in Tina's novel, "Alysa of the Fields". The first in a series, Alysa's story tells of life on Xunar-kun, a planet with many similarities to Earth, with a history that is a cautionary "what-if" parallel to our own. Howe smoothly combines elements of science fiction, fantasy, anthropology, survival stories, spirituality, nature studies, and young adult fiction. I found "Alysa of the Fields" to be a compelling, though not heavy-handed read, one that should be engaging for teens and adults alike.

I like some science fiction and fantasy, but I tend to be picky. When I started out with "Alysa of the Fields", I was a little leery, afraid that it would be one more science fiction story where the author indulges in creating a different planet with beings that have exotic fur or colors or brow ridges, but are otherwise humanoid. That's one thing I personally don't like about many sci-fi series on TV: I get bored with the "planet- and new-alien-culture-of-the-week" approach. This, however, is exactly where
Tina Howe triumphs. Her background in anthropology and her creative interest in people shine through in her descriptions of life among the Field-Folk and the Trailmen. Tina includes explanations of how people in these two separate tribes have adapted to daily life these 3,000 years "A.C." (After Cataclysm). Included are details about how they cook their food, what they eat, their style of dress, their matrimonial ceremonies, their division of labor, their pets, and so much more. None of this is boring, since it is well incorporated into the storyline. I never felt I was reading description for descriptions' sake.

Like any society, stories and skills, beliefs and traditions are taught, practiced, and passed on to insure the survival of Alysa's people, the Field-Folk. Besides twice-yearly meetings for trade, during which a form of sign language is used, the "Folk" do not interact with the Trailmen, whom they believe to be a fierce, aggressive, dangerous people. But the Folk and the Trailmen are on the cusp of tremendous, far-reaching changes. Alysa, quite unintentionally at first, is the catalyst.

Alysa is a likeable character, perhaps made all the more so by the fact that she is a somewhat unlikely heroine. She displays no unusual talents, has felt no calling to special work in her young life. She has been content to work in the fields, and keep house with her family. Alysa is genuine, caring, and loyal; she is firmly dedicated to those she loves. Following her strength of heart has never caused her problems, until the sudden death of her father changes the plans made for her adult life. Having no knowledge of the events she will set in motion, or of the consequences for all the inhabitants of the planet, she begins to question the traditions of her people, their beliefs about the strange Trailmen, the history they have always taught. With these events, and with Alysa's actions, we the readers find many ways to connect with and learn from this book.
Tina Howe has created a story that celebrates following your convictions and that encourages us to look at people who are different from us with respectful curiosity, openness, tolerance, and a desire to learn.

Kasey Cox, from my shelf books

Wellsboro, PA


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Page last updated on January 30, 2015
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