Epic fantasy featuring warrior priestesses, and fickle gods at war, for readers of Brian Staveley's Chronicles of the Unhewn Throne.
In a world of hostile clans loyal to meddling gods, Hessa is an Eangi: priestesses of the Goddess of War with the power to boil a man's brain and turn his bones to dust with a scream. Banished for disobeying her Goddess's command to murder a traveller, Hessa prays for forgiveness alone on a mountainside.
Until raiders burn her village to the ground, leaving nothing of her future but ash. Without her Goddess's favor, Hessa has no place beside her family in the High Halls of the afterlife. She is the last of the Eangi.
Warriors from the cities to the south plow through her homelands, slaughtering everyone in their path. With legionaries, deceitful gods, and newly-awakened demons at every turn, Hessa burns through her enemies with the Eangi Fire in her soul. But her journey reveals a harrowing truth: the gods are dying. The High Halls of the afterlife are fading. And Hessa's trust in her Goddess weakens with every unheeded prayer.
Thrust into a battle between her Goddess and the old gods she imprisoned, Hessa realizes there is far more on the line than earning her place in the afterlife. Bigger, older powers slumber beneath the surface of her world. And they're about to wake up.
Sean Gibson's The Part About the Dragon Was (Mostly) True will be published by The Parliament House in December 2020.
About Sean Gibson:
Sean Gibson is not a professional mini biography writer (if he were, this would be much more compelling). Instead, he’s a marketing professional by day, hangs out with his amazing wife, son, and daughter by night, and writes somewhere in between. He holds a BA in English Literature from Ohio Wesleyan University and an MBA from the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University, but he really wishes he had been able to matriculate at Hogwarts (he would have been in Hufflepuff for sure). Sean is a fan of sports teams from Detroit, a distressingly large number of bands that rose to prominence in the 1980s, and writing in the third person. He currently resides in Northern Virginia, and, given how much he hates moving, and given that his house has an awesome library, is likely to remain there for some time.
In addition to The Chronicle of Heloise & Grimple, Sean is the author of The Camelot Shadow and its prequel short, "The Strange Task Before Me." He has written extensively for Kirkus Reviews, and his book reviews have also appeared in Esquire.
A new book featuring Heloise, The Part About the Dragon Was (Mostly) True, is slated for release in December 2020 from Parliament House Books.
Follow him on Twitter @Gibknight, but only if you're really bored and enjoy tomfoolery.
About The Part About the Dragon Was (Mostly) True:
Sure, you think you know the story of the fearsome red dragon, Dragonia.
How it terrorized the village of Skendrick until a brave band of heroes answered the noble villagers' call for aid. How nothing could stop those courageous souls from facing down the dragon. How they emerged victorious and laden with treasure.
But, even in a world filled with epic adventures and tales of derring-do, where dragons, goblins, and unlicensed prestidigitators run amok, legendary heroes don't always know what they're doing. Sometimes they're clueless. Sometimes beleaguered townsfolk are more hapless than helpless. And orcs? They're not always assholes, and sometimes they don't actually want to eat your children.
Heloise the Bard, Erithea's most renowned storyteller (at least, to hear her tell it), is here to set the record straight. See, it turns out adventuring isn't easy, and true heroism is as rare as an articulate villager.
Having spent decades propagating this particular myth (which, incidentally, she wrote), she's finally able to tell the real story — for which she just so happened to have a front-row seat.
Welcome to Erithea. I hope you brought a change of undergarments — things are going to get messy.
REVIEW: THE PART ABOUT THE DRAGON WAS (MOSTLY) TRUE BY SEAN GIBSON
Chase Walker's Well of Bones was published in February 2020.
About Chase Walker:
Chase Walker was born in California and raised in Southern Nevada. He spent his childhood telling stories - stories that more often than not got him into trouble for stretching the truth. As a child, he idolized heroes like Indiana Jones and Luke Skywalker, who had a knack for getting out of the trouble they inevitably found themselves in. As he grew older, his tastes expanded beyond Steven Spielberg and George Lucas films. He joined the Army and found that its hurry-up-and-wait lifestyle was perfect for whipping out a paperback and reading a little Joe Abercrombie or Michael Crichton during the short bouts of downtime. He fell deeply in love with reading and discovered a whole new way to tell his stories. Writing became a hobby quickly, and then a passion.
Today, Chase is living a self-sufficient life in rural Kansas with his wife and a small menagerie of animals. Together they raise crops, chickens, and sometimes a little cain. He divides his time between the family homestead and his full-time job as an army mechanic. You would be hard-pressed ever to find him not working with his hands. He can most often be spotted turning wrenches under the hood of an old 1977 International Harvester Scout II or pounding away at a keyboard with skinned knuckles and dirty fingernails.
Chase's stories are inspired by a lifetime of adventure, by his ten plus years of service in the Army, and by the eccentric personalities who color his own world. He tries to inject a healthy dose of reality into his stories, even as he lets his imagination run wild creating fantasy worlds. He goes about with notebook in hand, collecting from his daily life the ideas that will spark his next story. A passionate story-teller above all else, he is always striving to improve his craft on paper.
Click here to visit his official website.
About Well of Bones:
War is a bloody affair for an infantryman. The war for expansion into a new world is no different for Jake Zimmar. He would do anything to get out of combat - even join an obscure division of witch hunters and monster slayers. Jake no longer fears the tales of his youth - the monsters are long gone if they ever existed at all.
Assigned to investigate some strange happenings on a small island colony, Jake and his new allies quickly find themselves in a different kind of struggle for survival. The age-old evil that stirs under the island is an evil beyond that of the creatures of myth.
A dark cave guards even darker secrets. Inside, Jake finds more blood... and long-forgotten nightmares made flesh.
Beware the Well of Bones
REVIEW: WELL OF BONES BY CHASE WALKER
Josh Dygert's Stella was published in April 2020.
About Josh Dygert:
Josh Dygert’s short stories have appeared in a number of online magazines and anthologies, including in the #1 Amazon Bestselling Horror Anthology Secret Stairs. He is also the author of a middle-grade fantasy novel called The Story Traveler, which is available from Amazon. He studied English and Theater in college and now teaches middle school English.
Click here to visit his official website.
Stella knew the names of the stars before she knew her alphabet. Although Stella's mother disappeared when she was too small to remember, she grows up happy beneath bright Indiana stars in the small town of Torrance with her father, her dog, and her best friend.
When a meteor lands in her father's cornfields, Stella and her father run after the fallen star. Stella watches as her father touches the star. The moment he does, he disappears in a flash of golden starlight. Stella never sees her father again.
From that moment on, Stella is terrified of the stars she always loved. She leaves Torrance, her dog, and her best friend only to discover that the truth she needs is still in Torrance. As a total eclipse approaches, Stella must find the courage to face her stars.
REVIEW: STELLA BY JOSH DYGERT
Aidan Lucid's The Lost Son was published in October 2019.
About Aidan Lucid:
Born in July 1981 with a very rare syndrome known as Moebius Syndrome, Aidan has never let that stop him achieving his goals in life. Mr. Lucid began writing back in 2002 after a religious experience. In 2004 after plucking up the courage to send out his material, he was published seven times that year. Over the next decade, Aidan's works appeared in various local and international anthologies, magazines and e-zines. From March to December 2007, Aidan wrote film reviews for the award winning Irish newspaper, "The Kerryman".
Aidan's YA epic fantasy novel, "The Lost Son", was released in 2019. He hopes to release the sequel in 2020.
To view more about Aidan and his works, go to: http://www.thezargothiansaga.com
About The Lost Son:
A Magic Coin. A Hidden World. An Incredible Adventure!
When Henry Simmons unearths a coin with mysterious powers, it’s clear that his life is soon to change... but not how he expects. After using the charm to woo Tracey Maxwell, Henry finds himself launched to another dimension - a world in which the human race is mercilessly hunted down by creatures called Sadarkians. This hellish realm, Zargothia, could scarcely be less safe.
Transported together, Henry and Tracey meet two mysterious strangers and a garrulous cat. Pressing forward, they learn that they’ve been charged with saving the people of Zargothia, but freeing King Argoth along with his people means facing ruthless overlords and almost certain death.
Vastly outnumbered, can Henry and his fated friends surmount the odds? In such a realm of wicked magic, danger lurks at every turn... and nothing is what it seems.
“Aidan Lucid takes us into this ambitious work by carefully crafting his characters and settings. We soon find ourselves in a world where the product of his wonderful imagination is both believable and thrilling.” - Tommy Frank O’ Connor, bestselling author of, The Poacher’s Apprentice.
Pick up your copy today and join in the exciting first adventure of The Zargothian Saga trilogy
REVIEW: THE LOST SON BY AIDAN LUCID
Risingshadow has had an opportunity to interview Alison Levy about her debut fantasy novel, Gatekeeper. Gatekeeper is the first book in the Daemon Collecting Series.
About the author:
Alison Levy lives in Greensboro, North Carolina with her husband, son, and variety of pets. When she's not writing or doing mom things, she crochets, gardens, walks her collies, and works on home improvement projects.
Rachel Wilde comes from a dimension that exists adjacent to ours. The people there have structured their society around daemon collecting: they locate, catch, and repair malfunctioning daemons (creatures out of phase with our world that tempt people to do good or evil). Now Rachel has been given two unusual assignments: 1) find a person who has been trying to break down dimensional barriers, and 2) track down a missing line of gatekeepers, human placeholders for a daemon that was too badly damaged to repair. Authorities of Rachel’s world believe the missing gatekeepers are descended from a girl who went missing from West Africa hundreds of years ago, likely sold into slavery. With no leads to go on, Rachel seeks help from Bach, a raving homeless man who happens to be an oracle. Bach does put her in the path of both of her targets - but he also lands her in a life-threatening situation. Somehow, Rachel has to stop the criminal, reunite a gatekeeper with her stolen past, and, above all, survive.
AN INTERVIEW WITH ALISON LEVY