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About M. F. C. Assoum

Every time lightning strikes or thunder cracks, you will remember the story of the Priori.

In 2008, my eldest brother was murdered in cold blood for his strong and successful effort in preventing troubled youth from joining violent gangs. He was 26 years old. After this, I was flung into the grips of depression, which forced me to place my university studies on hold.

To escape my pain and sorrow, I travelled around the world, learning, sharing and growing. Once I emerged from my dark place, I was inspired to dedicate my life to helping those who have survived trauma. This story, A Dance of Storms and Shadows Series, is one of the tools in my arsenal.

The idea for this series came about after volunteering with survivors of abuse and trauma. Having spoken to and mentored numerous survivors, when discussing inspiration, one commonality stuck out. There was a notable absence of a protagonist who had risen from the throngs of real, profound abuse and trauma in literature and pop culture.

Sure most, if not all protagonists, experience some mild forms of trauma and abuse, followed by the catalysing after-effects which allow them to overcome and grow into the heroes of the story. However, the antagonists of great literature are those who have been subjected to abominable traumas which turn them inevitably into villains. This novel questions why should abominable trauma equal villainous behaviour? What if for once, protagonists turned to heroism through such extreme traumas?

This literary trend disheartens those who have been through the unimaginable and have almost lost all hope for a better life. The real-world survivors, the heroes of said horrific traumas, who have turned to good rather than evil deserve literary hope and more so, representation.

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