Tag Archives: fantasy

End of the Journey

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Spring is the season of rebirth and new beginnings.  Winter’s white blanket melts away, and the slumbering earth awakens.  Tender shoots spring from roots thought long dead, emerging shyly at first and then, emboldened by the warming sun and nourishing soil, they burst forth with vibrant life.

Castle of Blood, final book of the Dark Lords of Epthelion saga, begins in the spring.  Between the rocky spires atop a forbidding peak stands a beautiful castle of purest rose quartz, erected by a demon for his chosen one, a person he will endow with the Black Arts but carefully mold to his will.  So whisper the superstitious Rauths of Barren-Fel.  Hans Ogilvie rides to investigate, filled with dread, for he fears he knows the Chosen One’s identity.  The castle, if it exists, portends Hans’ death and Epthelion’s ruin.

When Hans does not return, Arganian mystic Arris Marchant rides to find him.  Initially, his brother, Davon, accompanies him; but a series of visions draw Davon to aid the beleaguered woodsmen of San-Leyon.  On their separate quests they battle shapeshifters, black magic, and an ancient evil they cannot kill.  And when Davon is later captured, Arris must somehow destroy this evil without killing his brother.

Throughout the story the demon’s allure draws even the most honorable of men to himself.  A beautiful ruler seeks to obliterate her own people and reinstitutes the gory rites of human sacrifice.  A tribal leader’s attempt to utilize a fearsome beast to evict raiders who stole their land ensnares him in a grisly contract he cannot break–and by his slightest misguided thought he murders his loved ones.  A stalwart warrior suffers a ghastly curse.  Only the demon’s destruction can free them–if Arris can accomplish this.

I loved creating this mystical tale with its exotic setting and colorful characters.  The last leg of this journey is complete.  I have now embarked on a new journey into paranormal realms, which proves every bit as intriguing as the Dark Lords of Epthelion.  I love sharing my worlds.  You can catch a glimpse of them here.

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Castle of Blood

© Everthedreamer, 2017  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without written permission from the author is strictly prohibited.  Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given.

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The Journey Continues

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With Ryadok’s demise, Epthelion should have enjoyed lasting peace and Warrior Queen of Ha-Ran-Fel should have remained a stand-alone book.  That was my intention, at least, but readers did not agree.  Evil never dies, they told me, and neither did the malignant serpent who embodied it.  So–what happens next?  There must be a sequel.

I had to agree.  The scene that started it all, unused in Warrior Queen, remained fresh in my mind.  The unhappy maiden staring into the sunset had a story yet untold.  The serpent’s return, the growing unrest within the Dark Land, and this young woman’s hopes and dreams amid her shattered reality joined forces to produce A Dark Moon Rises.

In this time period, arranged marriages were the norm.  The war had claimed many lives, leaving few prospects for the widows and young maidens left desolate in its wake.  When Sam Shaw, a well-to-do Garris butcher asked newly-widowed Sarah Greene for her daughter’s hand in marriage, Sarah readily agreed, knowing the union would insure that neither she nor her daughter hungered.  She did not consider that daughter Melinda was only nineteen, while Shaw was nearly sixty.  (And yes, he wanted Melinda–not Sarah!)

Unwilling to endure such an arrangement, Melinda fled to Teptiel, a fledgling colony to the north, and to her joy met and married a handsome, prominent farmer named Eldor Rand.  Teptiel, however, harbored dark secrets.  So did Eldor Rand, and Melinda soon found her nightmare just beginning.  The serpent returned, drawing many to himself as he hunted Arris Marchant, the Arganian mystic who had left him stunned and crippled after slaying Ryadok.

As the serpent’s discipleship grew, Teptiel’s most honorable citizens became treacherous.  Who could one trust?  Could any hope rise from the ashes of the devil’s fires?

 

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Find out here!

© Everthedreamer, 2017  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without written permission from the author is strictly prohibited.  Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given.

 

One Leg of the Journey

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When I decided to seriously pursue my writing aspirations back in 2002, it still took a number of years before I devoted the amount of time and diligence required to transform the dream into reality.  Back then I was years from retirement, the day job paid the bills, and at the end of most days the LAST place I wanted to be was in front of another computer.  But then an idea came to mind and never went away.  Totally engaged, I had no choice but to delve deeper and keep writing.  Warrior Queen of Ha-Ran-Fel resulted.  Intended at first as a stand-alone, its publication generated enough interest for the development of a trilogy, entitled Dark Lords of Epthelion.

I enjoyed a most rewarding experience.  Writing Warrior Queen of Ha-Ran-Fel proved both an adventure and an escape.  For three to four hours every evening I left the mundane world of computer coding and set my imagination free, enjoying the ride as I waited to see where it took me.  I had but an image:  A young woman standing outside a ramshackle cottage at sunset.  The dying sun stained the cottage walls with rusty hues. A dead tree behind her raised skeletal bleached branches to the sky.  The wind lifted her blonde hair and stirred the sparse native grass at her feet.  Her face wore a haunted expression as she contemplated the darkening sky, trying to decide to which of the mysterious kingdoms surrounding her she could flee.  Whether merely unhappy or facing mortal danger I could not tell, but as she began to speak a tale of indescribable betrayal and tragedy unfolded that made me wonder:  How do you retain your sanity when the unendurable shatters your world and destroys all you hold dear?  How can you ever learn to love or trust or laugh again?

A story of human resilience, perseverance, faith, and victory emerged.  My heroine not only survived but thrived, and continued on to a more fulfilling life than she might have otherwise enjoyed. And during her journey she discovered within herself strength and abilities she didn’t know she possessed.


Warrior Queen of Ha-Ran-Fel swept me into a beautiful and enchanted world with a colorful cast of characters:  The Arganian mystics; the stalwart woodsmen; the evil sorcerer and his ambitious apprentice; the sinister peoples of the Dark Lord’s realm; and the rough-neck mercenaries, among others.  Action, suspense, and humor intertwine into an intriguing tale.  I loved writing it.  And I’d love to share my world with you.

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Click here to buy or to learn more.

© Everthedreamer, 2017  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without written permission from the author is strictly prohibited.  Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given.

 

New Release: Castle of Blood

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Just released on Amazon.com:  CASTLE OF BLOOD, Book 3 of the Dark Lords of Epthelion trilogy.  Just $0.99 in the Kindle store through January 2017.

A new castle founded by an ancient demon has appeared between the rocky spires of a menacing peak high in the Mystic Mountains. Hans Ogilvie rides to investigate and when he does not return, mystic Arris Marchant journeys to the castle to find him. His search leads him to an old nemesis who must be destroyed before plunging Epthelion into utter destruction. But can he destroy an enemy who cannot be killed?

Escape from the mundane into the Castle of Blood.

 

 

 

Rise of the Red Shadow

Of all the characters in THE BOOK OF DEACON, the malthrope Leo/Lain captivated me most, so when I saw THE RISE OF THE RED SHADOW on Amazon, I had to check it out. This book is now on my list of All-Time Favorites.

A terrified toddler cowering near the body of his brutally murdered mother, the young malthrope was captured by slave hunters and thrust into the deplorable existence of a plantation slave, where taskmasters and fellow slaves alike compounded his abuse because of what he was. Alone and despised, he quickly bonded to the one person who did not mistreat him–an old, blind slave named Ben. This bond, along with his natural curiosity, prompted the young malthrope to shadow the old man and try to emulate his actions. Quick to learn and through Ben’s patient guidance, he learned how to speak well and developed an aptitude for making tools and nurturing crops. Yet when events expelled him from the plantation, the skills that should have aided him in the world of men meant nothing. He remained, in the eyes of non-malthropes, a monster–feared, hated, and marked for death. But he never abandoned the values Ben had taught him. He became a warrior–indeed, a champion, possessing exemplary qualities lacking in most of the humans surrounding him; namely, a code of honor and a purpose in life.

This spellbinding fantasy kept me turning the pages. Joseph Lallo’s polished writing style lends a medieval vibe to the story and vividly depicts both the setting and the characters without bogging the action in a lot of cumbersome detail. A definite must-read for fantasy lovers!

Find out more here.

 

Lucius Mordarius

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“Fools!  They believe they have triumphed, but at the opportune moment I shall strike!  I, Lucius, Mordarius, once deemed unworthy by the Dark Lord Ryadok, shall conquer and reign supreme.  The Dragon’s colors shall fly over every kingdom in Epthelion while the Serpent cowers in his hole.  And when he does come forth, he shall serve me!”                                                                                              ~Lucius Mordarius, Warrior Queen of Ha-Ran-Fel, Book 1 of the Dark Lords of Epthelion series

Lucius Mordarius was Ryadok’s apprentice and cousin of Merewyn Havalseth, the novel’s heroine.  Orphaned at a young age, he was adopted by his uncle, Jonah Havalseth of Valhalea, who served as King Nicholas’ most trusted adviser.  His relationship to a prestigious and highly respected uncle, along with a virtuous facade gained Mordarius many friends among Valhalea’s elite.

But selfish ambition festered in a corrupt and merciless heart filled with contempt for the uncle who loved him as his son.  Mordarius’ innate craftiness, military prowess, and persuasive talents caught Anhuapta’s attention, and with seductive promises of wealth and power the Serpent god lured him into the inky bowels of Barren-Fel to Ryadok’s fortress.  Thinking Mordarius a useful puppet, Ryadok took him into his service.  Mordarius proved an apt and eager pupil, quickly mastering the Black Arts and embracing Ryadok’s vision of total dominion over all Epthelion.  However, servitude did not become Mordarius; he wanted Ryadok’s throne and position.  As a result, the enraged sorcerer cast him from a castle tower.

Anhuapta, disguised as a green dragon, appeared to Mordarius, strengthening and granting him the power needed to engage Ryadok.  He still sustained Ryadok, but throughout the story pitted one against the other in a quest to determine and then elevate the stronger of the two.

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© Everthedreamer, 2016  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without written permission from the author is strictly prohibited.  Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given.