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The Excellence Wolves duology takes place in a continent named Agmantia. It is based on the Caribbean for the most part but as a continent it is subject to various weather conditions including snowy winters. It is tropical and hot in the south with jungles and also deserts. To the north, there are forests and woods and snow capped mountains as well as provinces that live in perpetual spring/summer.

I had this map commissioned by Andrés Aguirre Jurado on Instagram. He also created my map of the Known World and he is an incredible artist and friend.

black and white map of fantasy country

You can see quite plainly the places that are filled with trees as well as Aulandri to the South West which is much more barren and dry. The middle is the most mountainous.

Agmantia is split into six provinces that were once individual kingdoms. In the events of Genesis of Dragons, these provinces are united under one ruler and the Voltaire dynasty begins. At the time of Wolves of Duty, the Voltaires rule over all Agmantia with the regional heads of each province serving as dignitaries to the crown.

Below are two characters from Wolves of Duty who live in Agmantia. Rogue Anai is the protagonist's sister and plays a fairly small role in both novels but with big impact.

pretty black woman with long hair and arms folded
Rogue Anai

Rogue is obviously pretty and her creation was based on the pretty but mean girls that I grew up around. At some points in my life, I wanted to be girls like that, thinking it was the only way to get attention or respect from the peer groups I wished to be a part of. Featuring this type of female in my books was important to me because there are so many faces of beauty in the world and in the Black community which I wanted to show.

Black women are rarely shown as standards of beauty that people aspire to, despite our physical characteristics being largely coveted: tanned skin, full lips, ample bums and thighs etc. so I tried to include women who have varied beauty. It will take me a while to get all the art done (its not cheap lol) but eventually there will be a hue of shades and sizes of Black women that better represents us. Alongside the reality of variations of feminine beauty, there are certain rules of Fantasy that I must admit I fell prey to. Most of the people who live in Agmantia are beautiful. Frustratingly so, but would it be Fantasy if it wasn't full of people you wanted to emulate or become?

I tried not to reserve beauty for only the young cast members and have inserted my fair share of mature women and zaddies for people to drool over. Here we have Goliath, the ruler of the wolf shifter population of Agmantia and father to three of our prominent characters.

black man with dreadlocks and a golden crown
Goliath Riadnak, Alpha of all Laecan

He was based on Mufasa, King Harrow from The Dragon Prince on Netflix and unfortunately my own father. My father was very strict with me and my brothers growing up and that feeling of foreboding whenever he was around, was something I wanted to add to Goliath's personality. It helped me hate him by pulling from all those negative emotions I had as a teenager plagued with too high expectations.

While my father wasn't as heinous as Goliath lol, drawing from my personal experiences really helped me shape Agmantia's inhabitants and its cultural set up.

In the novel, someone dies and its mentioned that a period of nine nights of mourning has passed. This is something prevalent in Jamaican culture which I was very happy to include. The few people who noticed this - well done! Another big part of Agmantian culture is the food. Sabre and his father can be seen drinking rum, while breakfast consists of fried plantain and dumplings. At one point, I think Sabre is eating buttered hard dough bread and jerked chicken because hey, why not!

Inserting these elements of my culture into the novel was so important to me to shape Agmantia in the minds of readers. It doesn't read immediately Caribbean intentionally, since I wanted it more as an inspiration rather than a complete copy of an island which I felt would be too cliche.

black woman in blue dress
Ianthe Anai

black woman with curly hair smiling
Tala Riadnak

While palm trees and coconuts do exist in this place, its not the only image I wanted to give of a place filled with Black faces. As a people, we are not a monolith, so the places we live shouldn't be either.

You will find in the Excellence Wolves duology that they are monotheistic where in the Antonides Legacy they are polytheistic. Agmantians believe in one God much like my own Seventh Day-Adventist faith but there isn't much practice of religious days or events...much like myself! As the inhabitants we meet in Wolves are shifters, while they believe in God, they hold more faith and reverence in the magic and shamans who maintain their way of life. Laecan law reigns above all other ideologies.

Agmantia is bordered to the west by Yitesh. While I've yet to set a story there, it is based central Africa for the most part. This would be more typical with dry heat and landscapes but I have two characters who hail from this land: Vargrim Nix and Yassin Bax. Yitesh is rich in necromancy and sanguimancy and voodoo. While I haven't gone too much into that realm just

black man with dreadlocks and gold necklace
Vargrim Nix

yet, it was amazing to research even if it got a little dark at times lol. Both Yitesh and Agmantia have a wealth of history and culture to explore and as I craft more stories, I hope to spend more time there. I am in the process of putting together a prequel novella which will feature here and I've decided to set this within the summer months so that the Caribbean flair of Agmantia can shine through as a few readers had hoped it would. I'm always out to please the fans so expect rum punch and beaches and palm trees in abundance!


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