Friday, August 14, 2020

The Magdalene Deception


The Magdalene Deception by Gary McAvoy Banner

 

 

The Magdalene Deception

by Gary McAvoy

on Tour August 1 - September 30, 2020


Synopsis:

The Magdalene Deception by Gary McAvoy

For two thousand years, believers have relied on Christ’s Resurrection as the bedrock of Christian faith. But what if the Vatican had been blackmailed into suppressing a first-century manuscript revealing the Resurrection to be a myth—and that long-hidden document suddenly reappears?

Michael Dominic, a young Jesuit priest expert in the study of ancient writings, is assigned to the Vatican as an archivist in the Church’s legendary Secret Archives. Hana Sinclair, a reporter for a Paris newspaper whose privileged family owns a prominent Swiss bank, is chasing a story about Jewish gold stolen by the Nazis during World War II—millions of dollars in bullion that ended up in the vaults of the Vatican Bank.

When Dominic discovers a long-hidden papyrus written by Mary Magdalene—one that threatens the very foundations of Christianity—he and Hana, aided by brave Swiss Guards, try to prevent sinister forces from obtaining the manuscript, among them the feared Ustasha underground fascist movement, Interpol, and shadowy figures at the highest levels of the Vatican itself.

Based on illuminating historical facts—including the intriguing true story of Bérenger Saunière, the mysterious abbé in the French village of Rennes-le-Château; and the Cathars, fabled keepers of the Holy Grail—“The Magdalene Deception” will take readers on a gripping journey through one of the world’s most secretive institutions and the sensitive, often explosive manuscripts found in its vaults.

Book Details:

Genre: Suspense Thriller
Published by: Literati Editions
Publication Date: July 1st 2020
Number of Pages: 368
ISBN: 0990837653 (ISBN-13: 978-0990837657)
Series: The Magdalene Chronicles (Book 1)
Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

The Magdalene Deception Trailer:

Read an excerpt:

1
Southern France – March 1244

The relentless siege of the last surviving Cathar fortress, perched strategically on the majestic peak of Montségur in the French Pyrenees, entered its tenth month.

The massive army of crusaders dispatched from Rome, thirty thousand strong, were garbed in distinctive white tunics, their mantles emblazoned with the scarlet Latin cross. Knight commanders led hordes of common foot soldiers, some seeking personal salvation, others simply out for adventure and the promise of plunder. They had already devastated most of the Languedoc region of southern France in the years preceding. Tens of thousands of men, women, and children had been slain, regardless of age, sex, or religious belief. Entire villages were burned, rich crops destroyed, and the fertile land which yielded them was poisoned, in a cruel, single-minded quest to root out and extinguish a small and peaceful, yet influential mystic order known as the Cathars.

The defeat of the impregnable Montségur remained the ultimate prize for the Church’s troops. Rumors of a vast treasure had reached the ears of every soldier, stirring up the passion with which these feared European mercenaries carried out their holy mission. As was the customary practice during a crusade, whatever pillage remained after the plundering—spolia opima, the richest spoils for supreme achievement—could be claimed by the victor. That temptation, bonded by the personal assurance of the pope that all sins would be forgiven and their paths to heaven assured, was enough to seduce anyone, nobleman or peasant, to take up cudgel, pike, or arrow in the name of God.

In 1209 Pope Innocent III had ordered a Holy Crusade to crush the spirit, and if necessary, the life of each and every dissident in the Languedoc region bordering France and Spain.

This independent principality had distinguished itself by fostering an artistic and intellectual populace well beyond that of most northern European societies at the time. The people of the Languedoc practiced a religious tolerance that encouraged spiritual and secular diversity. Schools teaching Greek, Hebrew, and Arabic languages and the customs which accompanied them flourished, as did those espousing the Cabala, an occult form of Judaism that dated from the second century.

Most settlers in the Languedoc viewed Christianity with the utmost repugnance; at the very least its practices were perceived as being more materialistic than godly in nature. The irreligious of the region passed over Christianity in large part due to the scandalous corruption exhibited by its local priests and bishops who, unable to influence the heathens within their provinces, came to prefer the rewards of commerce and land ownership over the tending of a meager flock.

Consequently, the authorities in Rome felt compelled to deal with this unforgivable heresy once and for all, in towns such as Toulouse and Albi within the Languedoc area.

Consigning his troops to their commanders, Pope Innocent III invoked a special benediction to all, lauding the divinity of their mission. Asked how they might distinguish their Christian brethren from the heretics, however, the crusaders were simply told, “Kill them all. God will spare His own.”

And so the Albigensian Crusade began.

The new moon cast no light over Montségur as night fell on the first day of March 1244, obscuring not only the hastened activities of its occupants, but the lingering threat conspiring outside its walls. A dense alpine fog had settled over the mountain, and the castle that straddled its inaccessible peak had withstood nearly a year of unceasing battle.

Weakened by the tenacity of their predators and yielding to the hopelessness of their situation, Raymond de Péreille, Lord of Château du Montségur and leader of the remaining four hundred defenders, commanded his troops to lay down their arms, and descended the mountain to negotiate terms of their capitulation.

Though offered lenient conditions in return for their surrender, de Péreille requested a fourteen-day truce, ostensibly to consider the terms, and handed over hostages as an assurance of good faith. Knowing there was no alternative for their captives—nearly half of whom were priest-knights, or parfaits, sworn to do God’s work—the commanders of the pope’s regiment agreed to the truce.

Over the next two weeks, reprieved from the constant threat of attack they had been enduring for months, the inhabitants of Montségur resolved to fulfill their own destiny before relinquishing their fortress—and their lives—to the Inquisition.

On the last day of the truce, as if guided collectively by a single will on a predestined course, the surviving members of the last Cathar settlement made special preparations for their departure.

Four of the strongest and most loyal of the parfaits were led by Bishop Bertrand Marty, the senior abbé of the fortress, as they descended deep within the mountain down a long, stepped passageway carved into alternating layers of earth and limestone. The end of the passage appeared to be just that, as if the original tunnelers had simply stopped work and retreated without finishing the job. But, while the others held torches, Abbé Marty withdrew a large rusted key-like wedge from beneath his cassock, thrusting it into a hidden cavity near the low ceiling.

The abbé manipulated the key for a few moments. A muffled sound of grating metal from beyond the stone wall echoed through the tunnel, and the seemingly impenetrable granite slid inward slightly, revealing a door.

Aided by the parfaits, the door swung open into a small dank chamber filled with an enormous cache of riches—gold and silver in varied forms, gilded chalices and bejeweled crosses, an abundance of gems and precious stones, sagging bags of coins from many lands.

And, in a far corner removed from the bulk of the treasure itself, stood a wide granite pedestal on which rested an ornately carved wooden reliquary, crafted to hold the most holy of relics, next to which sat a large book wrapped in brown sackcloth.

Standing before the legendary treasure of the Cathars—glittering and hypnotic in the dim torchlight—would prove seductive for most men. But the Albigensians held little regard for earthly goods, other than as a useful political means to achieve their spiritual destiny. Ignoring the abundant wealth spread before them, the abbé fetched the sackcloth while the other four parfaits hoisted the ancient reliquary to their shoulders, then they left the room and solemnly proceeded back up the granite stairway. In the thousand-year history of the Cathars, these would be the last of the order ever to see the treasure.

But the most sacred relic of the Christian world would never, they vowed, fall into the unholy hands of the Inquisition.

Emerging from the stone passage, Abbé Marty led the parfaits and their venerable cargo through the hundreds of waiting Cathars who had assembled outside, forming a candlelit gauntlet leading to the sanctuary. All were dressed in traditional black tunics, all wearing shoulder length hair covered by round taqiyah caps as was the custom of the sect.

Once inside, the parfaits lowered the reliquary onto the stone altar. The abbé removed the ancient book from the sackcloth and began the sacred Consolamentum, a ritual of consecration, while the four appointed guardians prepared themselves for their special mission.

Armed with short blades and truncheons, the parfaits carefully secured the reliquary in the safety of a rope sling, then fastened taut harnesses around themselves.

“Go with God, my sons,” Abbé Marty intoned as he gave them his blessing, “and in His name ensure this sacred reliquary be protected for generations to come.”

The four men climbed over the precipice and, assisted by their brothers gripping the ropes tied to their harnesses, gently and silently rappelled hundreds of meters down the escarpment. Sympathizers waiting at the base of the mountain assisted the parfaits in liberating their holy treasure, guiding them away from the danger of other troops and hiding them and the reliquary deep in one of many nearby caves.

Throughout the night, those remaining at Montségur celebrated their brotherhood, their holy calling, and their last hours alive. Descending the mountain the next morning, in a state of pure spiritual release from the material world, Abbé Marty led the last of the Cathars as they willingly marched into the blazing pyres awaiting them, martyrs to their cause.

The holy reliquary of the Cathars has never since been found.

2
Present Day

Rounding the northern wall of the Colosseum with a measured stride, a tall young man with longish black hair glanced at the Tag Heuer chronometer strapped to his left wrist. Noting the elapsed time of his eighth mile, he wiped away the sweat that was now stinging his eyes.

Damn this Roman heat. Not even sunrise, and it’s already a scorcher.

Approaching the wide crosswalks flanking the west side of the immense Colosseum, he wondered if this was the morning he would meet God. Dodging the murderous, unrestrained traffic circling the stadium became a daily act of supreme faith, as the blur of steel sub-compacts, one after another, careened around the massive structure on their way, no doubt, to some less hostile place. Since his arrival here he had discovered that this was the way with Italian motorists in general, though Roman drivers excelled at the sport. Veteran observers could always tell the difference between natives and visitors: a local would cross the road seemingly ambivalent to the rush of oncoming traffic. Non-Romans, who could as likely be from Milan as from Boston or Paris, approached the threat of each curb-to-curb confrontation with a trepidation bordering on mortal terror.

Crossing the broad Via dei Fori Imperiali, his route took him through the Suburra, the most ancient inhabited area of Rome and off the beaten path of most tourists. As a newcomer to a city whose normal pulse was barely evident beneath the confusing ambiguities of new and old, the runner felt most comfortable here in the Suburra, a semi-industrial working-class neighborhood, much like the one he only recently left in New York. In the summer, people got up early to tend their gardens before the real heat forced them indoors. The early morning air was thick with alternating scents of Chilean jasmine, honeysuckle, and petrol fumes.

He ran another five miles, long blooms of sweat accentuating a lean, muscular frame beneath a gauzy white t-shirt as he burst into a sprint up the final few blocks, past the empty trattorias and shuttered shops whose merchants were just beginning their morning rituals.

Slowing to a cool down pace as he crossed the Sant'Angelo bridge spanning the Tiber River, he turned left up Via della Conciliazione as the massive dome of Saint Peter's Basilica loomed suddenly ahead. Though it could be seen from almost anywhere in Rome, this approach always gave him the impression that the dome seemed to tip backwards, being swallowed up by the grand facade of the church the closer he got to it.

"Buongiorno, padre.” Several female voices, almost in unison, broke the cobblestone pattern of his reverie.

Father Michael Dominic looked up and smiled politely, lifting his hand in a slight wave as he swiftly passed a small cluster of nuns, some of whom he recognized as Vatican employees. The younger girls blushed, leaning their hooded heads toward each other in hushed gossip as their eyes followed the handsome priest; the older women simply bobbed a chilly nod to the young cleric, dutifully herding their novitiates into obedient silence on their way to morning Mass.

Though he had only been in Rome a couple of weeks, Michael Dominic's youthful exuberance and keen intellect had become known quickly throughout the cloistered population of Vatican City, setting him apart from the more monastic attitudes prevalent since the Middle Ages.

But despite the fusty parochialism and an atmosphere of suspended time he found within its walls, Dominic still felt the intoxication of privilege at having been assigned to Rome so early in his religious career. It had not been even two years since he lay prostrate at the altar of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City, ordained by his family friend and mentor Cardinal Enrico Petrini.

It was no secret to Vatican insiders that the eminent cardinal's influence was chiefly responsible for Dominic's swift rise to the marbled corridors of ecclesiastic power now surrounding him. The young priest’s scholarly achievements as a classical medievalist were essential to the work being done in the Vatican Library. But the progressive cardinal was also grateful for the vitality Dominic brought to his vocation, not to mention the charismatic ways in which he could get things accomplished in an otherwise plodding bureaucracy. Though Dominic could not account for his mentor’s vigorous inducement that he come to Rome—and knowing this particular prince of the Church so well, it was surely more than a familial gesture—he had trusted Enrico Petrini completely, and simply accepted the fact that this powerful man had believed in him strongly enough to give him an opportunity which he most certainly would not have had otherwise.

Pacing slower now, Dominic drew in rhythmic gulps of searing air as he neared the Vatican. A block or so before reaching the gate, he stepped inside the Pergamino Caffè on the Piazza del Risorgimento. Later in the day the cramped room would be filled with tourists seeking postcards and gelato, but mornings found it crowded with locals, most nibbling on small, sticky cakes washed down with a demitasse of thick, sweet coffee.

Across the room Dominic spotted Signora Palazzolo, the ample wife of the proprietor, whose wisps of white hair were already damp with perspiration. Seeing the priest approach, the older woman’s face broke into a broad, gap-toothed smile as she reached beneath the counter and withdrew a neatly folded black cassock Dominic had dropped off earlier, which she handed to him with deliberate satisfaction.

“Buongiorno, padre,” she said. “And will you take caffè this morning?”

“Molto grazie, signora,” Dominic said, accepting the cassock graciously. “Not today. I’m already late as it is.”

“Okay this time,” she said with a gently scolding tone, “but it is not healthy for a strong young man to skip his breakfast, especially after making his heart work so hard in this unforgiving heat.” Her hand reached up to wipe away the dampness as she spoke, coifing what little hair she had left in a vain attempt to make herself more attractive.

Heading toward the back of the shop, Dominic slipped into the restroom, quickly washed his face and raked his hair into some semblance of order, then drew the cassock over his head and buttoned it to the starched white collar now encircling his neck. Emerging from the restroom minutes later and making for the door, he glanced back to see the signora waving to him, now with a different look on her face—one beaming with respect for the clergyman he had suddenly become, as if she herself had had a role in the transformation.

Of the three official entrances to the Vatican, Porta Sant’Anna, or Saint Anne’s Gate, is the one generally used by employees, visitors, and tradesmen, situated on the east side of the frontier just north of Saint Peter's Square. Although duties of security come first, guards at all gates are also responsible for monitoring the encroachment of dishabille into the city. Dominic learned from an earlier orientation that casual attire of any sort worn by employees or official visitors was not permitted past the border. Jeans and t-shirts were barely tolerated on tourists, but the careless informality of shorts, sweatpants, or other lounging attire on anyone was strictly forbidden. An atmosphere of respect and reverence was to be observed at all times.

Vatican City maintains an actual live-in population of less than a thousand souls, but each workday nearly five thousand people report for duty within the diminutive confines of its imposing walls—walls originally built to defend against the invading Saracens a thousand years before—and the Swiss Guards at each gate either recognize or authenticate every person coming or going by face and by name.

One of the Guards whom Dominic had recognized from previous occasions, dressed in the less formal blue and black doublet and beret of the corps, waved him through with a courteous smile as he reached for his ID card.

“It is no longer necessary to present your credentials now that you are recognized at this gate, Father Dominic,” the solidly built young guard said in English. “But it is a good idea to keep it with you just in case.”

“Grazie,” Dominic responded, continuing in Italian, “but it would be helpful to me if we could speak the local language. I haven’t used it fluently since I was younger, and I am outnumbered here by those who have an obvious preference. You know, ‘When in Rome….’”

The guard’s smile faded instantly, replaced by a slight but obvious discomfort as he attempted to translate, then respond to Dominic’s rapid Italian.

“Yes, it would be pleasure for me, padre,” the young soldier said in halting Italian, “but only if we speak slowly. German is native tongue of my own home, Zurich, and though I speak good English, my Italian learning have only just started; but I understand much more than I speak.”

Dominic smiled at the younger man’s well-intended phrasing. “It’s a deal then. I’m Michael Dominic,” he said formally, offering a sweaty palm.

“It is an honor meeting you, Father Michael. I am Corporal Dengler. Karl Dengler.” Dengler’s face brightened at the unusual respect he was accorded, extending his own white-gloved hand in a firm grip. Recently recruited into the prestigious Pontificia Cohors Helvetica, the elite corps of papal security forces more commonly known as the Swiss Guard, Dengler had found that most people in the Vatican—indeed, most Romans—were inclined to keep to themselves. It was never this difficult to make friends in Switzerland, and he welcomed the opportunity to meet new people. He also knew, as did everyone by now, that this particular priest had a powerful ally close to the Holy Father.

“An honor for me as well, Corporal,” Dominic said a bit more slowly, yet not enough to cause the young man further embarrassment. “And my apologies for soiling your glove.”

“No problem,” Dengler said as he smiled. “With this heat it will be dry in no time. And if you ever want a running partner, let me know.”

“I’ll take you up on that!” Michael said with a wave as he passed through the gate.

Already the Vatican grounds were bustling with activity. Throngs of workers, shopkeepers, and official visitors with global diversities of purpose made their way along the Via di Belvedere to the myriad offices, shops, and museums—any indoor or shaded haven, in fact, that might offer escape from the heat of the rising sun.

Another Swiss Guard stood commandingly in the center of the street—looking remarkably dry and cool, Dominic thought, despite the obvious burden of his red-plumed steel helmet and the traditional billowy gala uniform of orange, red, and blue stripes—directing foot and vehicular traffic while smartly saluting the occasional dignitaries passing by.

To any observer, Vatican City appears to be in a state of perpetual reconstruction. Comprising little more than a hundred acres, the ancient city state is in constant need of repair and maintenance. Architectural face-lifts, general structural reinforcement, and contained expansion take place at most any time and in various stages, manifested in the skeletal maze of scaffolding surrounding portions of the basilica and adjoining buildings. Sampietrini, the uniquely skilled maintenance workers responsible for the upkeep of Saint Peter's, are ever-present throughout the grottoes, corridors, and courtyards as they practice time-honored skills of the artisans who have gone before them, traditionally their fathers and their fathers’ fathers. It was quite probable, in fact, that a given sampietrino working on, say, a crumbling cornerstone of the basilica itself, could very well be shoring up work that was originally performed by his great-great-grandfather more than a century before him.

Dominic walked to the end of the Belvedere, then turned right up the Stradone dei Giardini and alongside the buildings housing the Vatican Museums, until he reached the northern wall of the city.

A priest learns early that his life will suffer many rituals, and in at least one secular aspect, Michael Dominic’s was no different. Every day he ended his morning run with a meditative walk along the inner walls surrounding the immaculately maintained papal gardens. The fact that many of the same trees which lined the paths have been rooted here for centuries—serving the contemplative needs of whichever pope might be ruling at the time—gave Dominic a more natural feeling of historical connectedness, in subtle contrast to other abundant yet more imposing reminders of where he now happened to be living and working.

“Ah! Good morning, Miguel.” It was a gentle breeze of a voice, yet Dominic recognized it clearly in the early warm quiescence of the Vatican gardens.

“Buongiorno, Cal!” Dominic said brightly. Brother Calvino Mendoza, prefect of the Vatican Archives and Dominic’s superior, was approaching the entrance to the building. Clad in the characteristic brown robe and leather sandals of his Franciscan order, Mendoza was a round, timorous man in his seventies—quite pleasant to work with, Dominic thought, if a little indiscreet in his obvious affection for men.

“You are up early today,” Mendoza said in heavily accented English, furtively appraising Dominic’s form beneath the cassock. “But then, defying the wicked heat and traffic of Rome is best done before sunrise, no?”

“It is, yes,” Dominic laughed easily, his damp hair glistening in the sun as he shook his head in amusement, “but in another hour or so I expect the pavement to start buckling.”

Dominic had come to enjoy Mendoza’s fey demeanor and playful flirting. Nearly everyone he had met here seemed overly stern and impassive to be really likable, and Dominic was naturally drawn to people he found more hospitable anyway. This gentle man had a quick mind for humor and was never, Dominic found, lacking for a proverb appropriate to the moment. It was also common for Mendoza to call many on his staff by the Portuguese equivalent of their name, maintaining an affectionate cultural touchstone to his native home of Brazil. As for the subtle intimations, Mendoza grasped early on that Dominic’s vow of chastity was not likely to be compromised, and particularly not by another man.

“You’ll get used to it,” Mendoza nodded, smiling. “It is worse in the mornings, to be sure, but come late afternoon we are blessed by the ponentino, a cool wind off the Tyrrhenian Sea.

“And besides,” he quipped, “’To slip upon a pavement is better than to slip with the tongue—so the fall of the wicked shall come speedily.’” He finished by glancing around the garden with mock suspicion, as if every word were prey to overcurious but unseen ears.

“‘Ecclesiastes,’” Dominic responded. “And thanks for the admonition.”

Pleased that the young priest indulged his occasional whimsy, Mendoza shuffled up the few steps of the entrance to the Archives.

“Now come, Miguel, your days of orientation are over. Let’s get on with the real work,” he said dramatically, his arms nearly flapping as his large body moved up the steps into the Archives. “Today is a very special day.”

“I’ll catch up with you shortly, Cal. I’ve got to take a quick shower first. But why is today so special?”

From the top of the steps, Mendoza turned around to face Dominic and, like a child with a tantalizing secret, whispered with barely contained excitement, “The treasures we are about to exhume have not been seen by any living soul for several hundred years.”

Clearly a man who enjoyed his work, Calvino Mendoza’s eyes gleamed with anticipation as he lifted one heavy eyebrow in an arch, then spun as quickly as his heavy frame would allow and disappeared through the heavy wooden door.

As Dominic walked back to his apartment at the Domus Santa Marta, the resident guesthouse just south of Saint Peter’s Basilica, two men in a golf cart were heading in his direction, both dressed in the familiar black and red garb of cardinals. The cart stopped directly in his path, and one of the men stepped out, approaching him.

“Father Dominic, I presume?” The heavyset man had a thick Balkan accent, with an intelligent face bearing an inscrutable mask of expression.

“Yes, how can I help you?” Dominic said.

“I am Cardinal Sokolov, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. I simply wanted to extend a hand of welcome on behalf of those of us who have been expecting you.”

Dominic recognized the cardinal’s department, better known as the infamous Office of the Holy Inquisition before someone came up with a less intrusive name.

“Good to meet you, Your Eminence,” he said, surprised by the comment. “I didn’t realize anyone was actually expecting me, though.”

“Oh, yes,” Sokolov said, holding Dominic’s hand in an uncomfortably firm grip as they shook. “Having Cardinal Petrini’s endorsement carries a great deal of influence here. But it also comes with certain expectations. First and foremost, keep to yourself. Do not expect to make many friends here. One is surrounded by vipers masquerading as pious souls.

“Secondly, know that you are being watched at all times. Conduct yourself appropriately and you may survive your time here. There are many who were vying for your job as scrittore in the Secret Archives, and they will seek any opportunity to displace you.

“Lastly,” the cardinal said scowling, his eyebrows a black bar across his fleshy face, “come to me directly if you witness or suspect anyone of illicit or unbecoming activities. Such careful scrutiny will be viewed with admiration by His Holiness, for whom I speak in this regard.”

Dominic was dumbfounded by the man’s audacity, hardly the kind of welcome he would have imagined, one that shed a darker light on his exhilaration at now working and living in the Vatican.

“I will keep all that in mind, Eminence,” he said, forcibly pulling back his hand from the cardinal’s cloying grasp.

Sokolov stood a moment longer appraising Dominic’s face, then turned and shuffled himself back into the golf cart, which pulled away with a mounting whine as it headed into the papal gardens.

Troubled by the encounter, Dominic returned to his apartment, the fresh burdens expected of him weighing on his mind. What have I gotten myself into, he thought, stepping into the shower.

***

Excerpt from The Magdalene Deception by Gary McAvoy. Copyright 2020 by Gary McAvoy. Reproduced with permission from Gary McAvoy. All rights reserved.

 

 

Author Bio:

Gary McAvoy

Gary McAvoy is a veteran technology executive, entrepreneur, and author of "And Every Word Is True," a sequel to Truman Capote's landmark book "In Cold blood." "The Magdalene Deception" is his fiction debut, and is the first in a series called The Magdalene Chronicles.

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Chasing Magic



Chasing Magic 
The Last Witch Coven Book 1 
by Rachel Medhurst 
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance 


An elemental witch with limited magic falls in love with a human. Standard really.

My story is a typical one. Girl meets boy, drama ensues, and the warlocks try to kill me. Okay, maybe not so typical. And yet, it’s on point. My whole life, I’ve been one of eight members left in the last witch coven. Cursed to continually revisit the earth until all eight of us unite with our soul match in one lifetime, we fight the warlocks in order to reawaken magic before the witches finally die out.

Antony is my hunky bodyguard, assigned to me by the last witch elder. When I’m kidnapped by the warlocks, he stops at nothing to find me, even though he’s in complete denial about our connection. Still, can’t blame a guy for freaking out when he finds out that he’s a witch, destined to be my soul match. Only time will tell if we’re able to fulfil our fate or will magic fade, along with my happiness?

THIS BOOK WAS PREVIOUSLY CALLED PISCES - ZODIAC TWIN FLAME BOOK 1. IT HAS BEEN REWORKED AND EDITED 

**Only .99 cents** 





Chasing Warlocks 
The Last Witch Coven Book 2 


Bring magic back to earth? Easy peasy. Until my life gets blown apart. Literally.

With a witch elder missing, and a mission to complete, I’m in the perfect position to plan a counter attack on the warlocks. That’s until a disaster at work rips my world apart, leaving me defenceless against our enemy.

My ex-girlfriend Natalie is determined to get me back on my feet, pushing me to become a better witch in order to fight the warlocks and find my soul-match. If I don’t embrace the new me, my magic will fade along with my chance at being happy.

THIS BOOK USED TO BE CALLED ARIES - BOOK 2 IN THE ZODIAC TWIN FLAME SERIES. IT'S BEEN REWORKED AND EDITED. 

**Only .99 cents** 






Rachel grew up in South East England. She learnt at a young age that life can be hard work. She now believes that whatever happens to you, you can overcome it. 

She writes to help others see that no matter where you come from, you can still achieve your dreams. As a teenager she would never have dreamed of becoming an author. 

However, in her twenties, she realised that she was allowing her past to dictate her future. She decided to accept and forgive everything that had happened to her, everyone that had hurt or upset her and she even forgave herself for allowing life to bring her down. 

In early 2014 after writing The Deadliners, Rachel decided to self publish. It was one of the best things she's ever done. Since then, she's released numerous series' and really enjoys writing full time. 

Rachel will always remember where she came from, but only to see how far she has come. 





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This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Charlotte Hubbard will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

When four maidels join forces to turn an abandoned barn into an Amish marketplace, the unmarried women have community in mind. But their fledgling enterprise promises to reap surprising rewards for each in turn, including the gift of unexpected love . . .

For Regina Miller, the new Morning Star Marketplace is a chance to share her secret work with the world—without revealing herself. Old Order Amish forbid the creation of art without purpose, but without a husband, Regina has been free to explore the joy of painting in her attic. Yet when Gabe Flaud’s curiosity leads him to speculate that Regina herself is the painter, the full weight of their community’s judgement falls on her shoulders. When Gabe stands up to defend Regina, questioning the Order’s restrictions, he reveals his own guilty secret and is shunned along with her. Forced to turn to each other for companionship, the young couple must learn to balance their own needs with their deep faith … and a love that will show them all things are possible.

My review...

This is the first book in a new series titled “The Maidels of Morning Star”. I have not read all of Charlotte Hubbard’s books by any means. However, each story that I have read touched on the problems that many people have in everyday life whether they be Amish or not.  Each story was a good story yet light and heart-warming.

By saying that this book was not as light does not mean I’m saying a bad thing. To say that I think this may be somewhat realistic of today’s world does not mean I know anything about the old order Amish nor any Amish faith. So what am I saying?

The writing here is as good as all of Charlotte Hubbard’s other books. The emotions and problems dealt with in an open and honest manner yet never in anything but a clean manner. Something anyone can read and know before they open the cover, they will deal with a story but not with any profanity, sex, etc.

I’m also saying I thought this book was a little different than her other series. That might be exactly what it’s time for her to do. I can’t see her writing mass market books on the same basic subject forever. Remember...change is good.

 


Read an Excerpt

As the Sunday service neared its end, Regina Miller opened her eyes after the prayer. She reached for the Ausbund under her pew bench. Across the room on the men’s side, Gabe Flaud sang the first phrase of the final hymn in his clear, melodious voice to establish the pitch and the tempo.

I could listen to Gabe sing all day, Regina thought as she joined in with the others.

She would never tell Gabe that, of course. Five days a week she worked as a finisher in the furniture shop his dat owned, staining and varnishing the dining room and bedroom sets the male employees built in the factory. Gabe was the foreman and he was single, but he looked at Regina as though she was a fixture in the shop—just one of the boys. She’d heard rumors that he dated English girls despite the fact that he’d joined the Old Order, yet the church leaders had never called him on it.

He’s way too adventurous to give a mouse like me a second glance, she mused as she looked at the stained hands holding her hymnal. Why do I waste my time thinking about him? Must be that springtime thing Jo was talking about, wanting something different—something more—in my life.

Regina had a more compelling reason for not entertaining notions about Gabe, but it was a secret she didn’t dare think about during church. God was undoubtedly displeased with the part of her life she kept hidden away. She’d probably be inviting a visible sign of His judgment—perhaps a lightning bolt shooting through the roof to strike her down—if she allowed her mind to wander to her sinful pastime while she was supposed to be worshipping Him.


About the Author:
In 1983, Charlotte Hubbard sold her first story to True Story. She wrote around 70 of those confession stories, and she’s sold more than 50 books to traditional or online publishers. A longtime resident of Missouri, she’s currently writing Amish romances set in imaginary Missouri towns for Kensington. She now lives in Omaha, NE with her husband of 40+ years and their Border collie, Vera.

Website http://www.charlottehubbard.com
Facebook http://www.Facebook.com/Charlotte.Hubbard1

Order Ebook

Kindle https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07ZPKX5SQ
Kindle UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07ZPKX5SQ/
Kindle Canada http://www.amazon.ca/dp/B07ZPKX5SQ/
Kindle Australia http://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B07ZPKX5SQ/
Apple Books https://books.apple.com/us/book/morning-star/id1507818638
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Barnes and Noble https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/morning-star-charlotte-hubbard/1134434813?ean=9781420145151oks New Zealand Apple: https://books.apple.com/nz/book/morning-star/id1507818638
Nook https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/morning-star-charlotte-hubbard/1134434813
Kobo https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/morning-star-60
Google Play https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Charlotte_Hubbard_Morning_Star?id=goq5DwAAQBAJ

Order Print
Zebra Books
July 28, 2020
ISBN-13: 9781420145120
ISBN-10: 1420145126

Amazon http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ISBN=1420145126/
Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ISBN=1420145126
Amazon Canada http://www.amazon.ca/exec/obidos/ISBN=1420145126
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Books-A-Million http://www.booksamillion.com/product/9781420145120
Chapters Indigo http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/a/9781420145120-item.html
IndieBound http://www.indiebound.org/book/9781420145120
The Book Depository http://www.bookdepository.com/book/9781420145120


Thursday, August 13, 2020

Homecoming

 


Fiction (Family Life), Fiction (Pets and Animals), Fiction (Urban)

Date Published: August 15, 2020

 

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You cried with Hachiko. You got spooked and then laughed it off with Scooby Doo. And you fell in love with John Grogan's incorrigible Marley. But you have yet to meet a dog quite like Super Bu .


After years of arguments on the matter, the Bera family has finally decided to bring home a dog.

 

Ajay has wanted a dog since he was a child. He has fantasized about every version of his future life around them.

His brother, Arun, would love to get a dog as much but doesn't mind not having to clean up after one.

Ajit, their father, also wants to get a dog. He just wants to feel the love of a dog again, like he used to when he was a child.

Barnali, Ajit's wife, loathes the idea of having a dog in the house. She spent her childhood praying for only one thing, that she shouldn't get married into a family that has dogs. And until now, she got her wish.

 

But now, Ajay has finally worn out his mother's resilience and the Beras are bringing home a dog. Can this be just the homecoming that the dog or the family had anticipated?

 

Read now and find out.

 

 

 

 

Excerpt

 

The lazy young lad who would sleep through a freaking earthquake suddenly didn’t need anyone to wake him up. It was a special Sunday morning in September.

Ajay was up at five in the morning. Not once did he hit the snooze button on the alarm clock. He did not sleep through the ringing alarm until someone else in the house got perturbed enough to shake him awake. He heard the alarm within the first few seconds of it going off. He woke up and switched off the alarm, so as not to wake the rest of the family. He did not lie back down over the scattered sheets on his bed like he usually would on any other day.

He got up, headed to the bathroom, freshened up, brushed his teeth, came back out, changed into an ironed, royal blue t-shirt and his grey jeans, and he sat down on the edge of the bed, yet to be made, posture annoyingly better than how he usually sat, and waited. He did not have to get up that early; there wasn’t an exam to get to, no lectures at college that he feared he would be arriving late for, no potential girlfriend who had invited him to meet somewhere for a breakfast date.

It was a Sunday, but Ajay was ready and all dressed up to hit the city by 5:30 in the morning. Yet, this was only the second most unusual thing about this day, because this was also the day that the Bera family had finally agreed to bring home a dog.

 

About the Author

Debarshi Kanjilal (DK) is an urban fiction writer based out of Bangalore, India. His debut novella, Based on Lies, was touted as a gripping psychological thriller by several reputable reviewers. In 2020, DK is back with his second novella, SuperBu: Homecoming, an emotional journey of a family and their dog.

Debarshi ran the ‘God of Absurdity’ blog from 2012 to 2015, which published humorous anecdotes and reflection pieces. He is also an accomplished learning experience design professional who has help shaped adult learning strategy for some of the most well-known organizations in the world.

 

Contact Links

Website

Instagram

Facebook

Goodreads

 

Purchase Link

Amazon 

Free with Kindle Unlimited




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RABT Book Tours & PR

False Light


 This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions

Claudia Riess will be awarding a $50 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.  

See below to sign up for the Giveaway. 


Academic sleuths Erika Shawn, art magazine editor, and Harrison Wheatley, a more seasoned art history professor, set out to tackle a brain teaser.  This time the couple—married since their encounter in Stolen Light, first in the series—attempt to crack the long un-deciphered code of art forger Eric Hebborn (1934-1996), which promises to reveal the whereabouts of a number of his brilliant Old Master counterfeits.  (Hebborn, in real life, was a mischievous sort, who had a fascination with letters and a love-hate relationship with art authenticators.  I felt compelled to devise a puzzler on his behalf!)  After publication of his memoir, Drawn to Trouble, published in 1991, he encrypts two copies with clues to the treasure hunt.  On each of the title pages, he pens a tantalizing explanatory letter.  One copy he sends to an art expert; the second, he releases into general circulation.  The catch: both books are needed to decipher the code.

When the books are at last united 25 years later, Erik and Harrison are enlisted to help unearth their hidden messages.  But when several research aides are brutally murdered, the academic challenge leads to far darker mysteries in the clandestine world of art crime.  As the couple navigate this sinister world, both their courage under fire and the stability of their relationship are tested.

My review...

This is an interesting story. One involving art experts, art detectives, mystery, and murder.

I was going to say the story starts out slow, but on reflection I don’t think that’s what I really felt at all. The beginning of this book shows the author’s knowledge and imagination about the many facets of art forgery. It describes the techniques we now have to detect the many schemes that have existed throughout the centuries. I think the description of these techniques is a little too academic. I’m using “academic” here not as a term for theoretical, but rather in a pedagogical way. I think the obvious knowledge and/or research of the author made the beginning seem to be slow.

But this story as a whole  cannot be described as slow moving.  There is an under-running current throughout the story of the relationship between the art experts. A story of everyday life and the problems that plague us all now and then. I think it is this relationship and the additional characters in the story that make the plot begin to hold your interest. A thread that makes you want to know what is going to happen. That is after all the point of a who dunnit, right? To keep you reading right to the end. 

read an excerpt...

Owen Grant was ebullient—“ripped with joy,” his beloved wife might have said. He smiled, remembering the flutter of her eyelids that accompanied her minted phrases. Now that she had died and his arthritis no longer permitted him to jog up a sweat, he satisfied his lust for life—which remained, five years after retirement, as vigorous as it had been in his teens—with voracious reading and clay sculpting. Today, however, he satisfied it with the Art and Antiques article that had set his heart racing when he’d come across it this morning while sifting through his mail. He stole another glance at the newsletter on the kitchen table. In the article, a used and rare book shop owner spoke about having acquired a copy of a memoir by Eric Hebborn, the infamous art forger. “It was in a carton I picked up at an estate sale,” the owner had said. “The author’s handwritten note on the title page literally blew my mind!”

Hebborn’s note was displayed in a photograph. Owen had recognized the handwriting at once. Imagine, after decades of searching for this copy of the book—placing ads in all the art magazines, later in their online versions, finally giving up—proof of it had fallen into his life as he was about to venture another sip of his scalding morning coffee.

Now it was 8:30 p.m., and there was nothing more to prepare for. Owen had contacted the shop owner—how young and breathless she had sounded!—and they had made plans to meet. He had invited his longtime friend and colleague, Randall Gray, to collaborate with him. Randall, twenty years his junior and still in the game, was more current in his knowledge of the world of art crime and eager to have a look at the book as well. Owen was on a skittering high, unable to concentrate on his usual avocations. Rather than wear a hole in the carpet pacing in circles, he opted for a walk in Central Park.

He headed for the nearest pedestrian entrance at Fifth Avenue and 72nd Street, two blocks from his luxury apartment building on 74th. There, he chose the rambling path leading to the Lake and Loeb Boathouse. It was a balmy night, on the warm side for mid-April. He might have stepped out in his shirtsleeves, but his conditioned urbanity, always at odds with his truer self, had held sway, and he had worn his suit jacket.

Aside from the couple strolling up ahead and the sound of laughter coming from somewhere south, Owen was alone. There had been an uptick of muggings lately, but his frisson of fear only piqued his excitement for the adventure shimmering on the horizon. As he walked, he silently chatted with his wife, Dotty, as he often did, so that their separation would not be absolute. He commented on the moonless night and looked up, for both of them, at the rarely visible canopy of stars. For a few seconds he was lost with her, until, without warning, he felt a hard object pressed against the back of his skull—the skull that held all memories, like Dotty’s fluttering eyelids and the smell of new clay. He knew what the object was without ever having touched one. He was a man of reason, not a fighter. He flung up his hands. “I have money. Let me get to it.”

There was no response. He reached into his pocket for his wallet—how warm the leather was against his thigh—and his keys jangled of homecomings, and the child in him whimpered please no, before the explosive pop of a champagne cork ended him and Dotty and all the rest of it.  

about Claudia Reiss...

Claudia Riess, a Vassar graduate, has worked in the editorial departments of The New Yorker

and Holt, Rinehart, and Winston and has edited several art history monographs.


https://www.amazon.com/Claudia-Riess/e/B001KHYQK2

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3052782.Claudia_Riess

https://twitter.com/ClaudiaRiess

https://claudiariessbooks.com/

http://www.facebook.com/ClaudiaRiessBooks

https://www.pinterest.com/claudiariessbooks/

https://www.instagram.com/claudiariessbooks/

Buy Link:

https://www.amazon.com/False-Light-Art-History-Mystery-ebook/dp/B07ZPBRF2G

 

The book is on sale for only $0.99 during the tour.



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The Last Collection


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Jeanne Mackin will be awarding a $50 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.  

See below to sign up for the GIVEAWAY.



An American woman becomes entangled in the intense rivalry between iconic fashion designers Coco Chanel and Elsa Schiaparelli in this captivating novel from the acclaimed author of The Beautiful American.

 Paris, 1938. Coco Chanel and Elsa Schiaparelli are fighting for recognition as the most successful and influential fashion designer in France, and their rivalry is already legendary. They oppose each other at every turn, in both their politics and their designs: Chanel’s are classic, elegant, and practical; Schiaparelli’s bold, experimental, and surreal.

 When Lily Sutter, a recently widowed young American teacher, visits her brother, Charlie, in Paris, he insists on buying her a couture dress—a Chanel. Lily, however, prefers a Schiaparelli. Charlie’s beautiful and socially prominent girlfriend soon begins wearing Schiaparelli’s designs as well, and much of Paris follows in her footsteps.

 Schiaparelli offers budding artist Lily a job at her store, and Lily finds herself increasingly involved with Schiaparelli and Chanel’s personal war. Their fierce competition reaches new and dangerous heights as the Nazis and the looming threat of World War II bear down on Paris.

 read an excerpt

Of the three primary colors, blue is most suggestive of paradox: it is the color of longing and sadness, and yet it is also the color of joy and fulfillment.  On a ship, at night, blue water merges into blue sky, so blue is the color of places with no borders, no edges.

If you throw salt into a fire, the flames will burn blue. Salt rubbed into a wound renews the pain, intensifies it.  Seeing others kiss and embrace was salt in my wound, a blue flame burning the length of me.

Blue best represents the contradictions of the heart, the need to be loved and cherished at the same time that we wish for freedom.

Blue, the color of the Worth gown that the little girl Elsa Schiaparelli found in her Roman piazza attic, the color of the covers of the penny romances Coco Chanel found in the orphanage attic.

Blue is what made Elsa Schiaparelli’s daring color, shocking pink, so special: it is pink infused with blue, turning a demure blush into an electric surge. Schiaparelli turned girlish pink into the color of seduction by adding that touch of blue.

And always, there is the blue of the Paris sky on a June day.

Listen. I’m going to tell you a story about fashion, and politics. And, of course, about love. The three primaries, like the primary colors.


about Jeanne Mackin

Jeanne Mackin ‘s latest novel, The Last Collection, A Novel of Elsa Schiaparelli and Coco Chanel takes the reader to Paris, just before world war II, and the intense, dangerous rivalry between the two queens of fashion. Her previous novels include A Lady of Good Family, the award winning The Beautiful American, The Sweet By and By, Dreams of Empire, The Queen’s War, and The Frenchwoman.

 Historical fictions explore the lives of strong women who change their worlds…because we know the world always needs a lot of change! She has worked all the traditional ‘writers’ jobs’ from waitressing to hotel maid, anything that would leave her a few hours each morning for writing. Most recently, she taught creative writing at the graduate level.  She has traveled widely, in Europe and the Middle East and can think of no happier moment than sitting in a Paris café, drinking coffee or a Pernod, and simply watching, while scribbling in a notebook.

 

JeanneMackin.com

Facebook.com/JeanneMackinauthor

Twitter.com/JeanneMackin1

 Penguin Random House - https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/531859/the-last-collection-by-jeanne-mackin/

 Amazon - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07H71Q5FQ/ref=dp-kindle-redirect


more personal "stuff" about Jeanne Mackin

What is the sweetest thing someone has done for you?

Oh, I remember so many kindnesses but perhaps the sweetest was this one. When I was first traveling on my own, after college, I ended up in a youth hostel in Cairo, after months of wandering through France, Italy, Switzerland, and Germany with a backpack and very little money.  I was frazzled, exhausted and young enough that I didn’t yet know I am intensely claustrophobic. So I get locked into the woman’s bathroom, a very small room with no windows, darkness so complete I couldn’t figure out to unlock the door.  I pounded and screamed –  and one of the hostel workers heard me, opened the door, gave me the kind of look you’d give a homeless puppy, picked me up – he was large, I was very small – carried me to a sofa, and brought me a cup of tea.  No words, no questions, no judgement.  And then he disappeared and left me to recover my pride and my calmness with that cup of tea.

How would you spend ten thousand bucks?

Some would have to go to a good charity.  Like Elsa Schiaparelli, the designer who has a very important role in my novel, The Last Collection, I think we have an obligation to help others.  Of course I never did what Elsa did as a child:  throw her mother’s furs and evening gowns out the window for every passerby to take away! After giving some to charity, I’d rent an apartment for a season in Le Suquet, the old part of Cannes in southern France. I’d spend the days at the beach and touring the wonderful small museums dedicated to Picasso and Matisse and the evenings, under the stars, sitting at a café sipping a regional rose wine. Heaven. I’d visit Coco Chanel’s beautiful house in the south of France.

Where do you get your best ideas?

Three places are indispensable for a writer. The first, is her own bed. Dream at night, rest, but when you wake up pay attention to what your very first thought is. Often, it is a good idea or a solution to a problem. If I’m stuck in my writing, I use Collette’s solution, and the solution of many other writers: take a walk.  The sheer act of moving often jolts the imagination into action.  And the third place, and fourth and fifth and sixth, etc. is in someone else’s book. Read. Read, read, read.  Novels are often responses to an earlier story or situation or an astounding fact or intriguing historical figure, and those things may not come to you if you aren’t reading.

What comes first, the plot or the characters?

It’s difficult for me to separate the two, but I would say character has to be the primary focus of a good story.  I like to write about women who defy expectations and break boundaries, who face challenges and decisions that affect others as well as themselves.  The plot is about what the challenges are; the decisions and choices are about the character.

What does your main character do that makes her special?

Lily Sutter, the young American woman who goes to Paris in 1938, is a widow still grieving the death of her husband.  She is emotionally frozen, unable to fully participate in life because of her grief, and she must find her way back to the light, to the possibility of joy.  It happens, not with a kiss like in a fairy tale, but when she meets the very extraordinary fashion designer, Elsa Schiaparelli who, herself, is so vibrant, so energetic, so full of that power that says “I can do anything!”  Lily must learn to be more than a passive observer; she must fully engage.  When she does, she comes back to life.  And the possibility of joy, and of love, returns when she meets a young soldier.



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Wednesday, August 12, 2020

The Rose

 

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions

PD Alleva will be awarding a $75 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.  

See below to sign up for the Giveaway. 



A masterful, dystopian science fiction thriller of underground genetic experiments, telepathic evil greys, mysterious rebellion, conspiracy, martial arts, and Alien Vampires.

 

Sandy Cox believed WW3 was over. But for those Alien Vampires, War Has Just Begun.

 

Forty-eight hours after a World War III treaty is signed Sandy Cox awakens in an underground compound unable to move. Tied to machines she screams for help but no one answers. At least NO ONE HUMAN.

 

And they’ve taken her unborn child.

 

Enter Phil, a rebel freedom fighter who has had more than his share of Alien Vampires. Armed with THE BLADES, a sacred alien martial art, he enters the compound on a mission to find Sandy. But as he battles his way through the compound, Phil discovers Sandy has her own agenda. Finding her stolen child is all that matters.

 

But the vampires have their own plan and Sandy’s baby is at the heart of their diabolical plot. Joined by a crew of rogue soldiers, they must navigate the underground compound, battling genetically mutated humans, aliens and monsters.

 

When battling Alien Vampires, one thing is certain…Get Ready To Bleed!

 

Fans of The Hunger Games, George RR Martin, VE Schwab, Star Wars and Ancient Aliens will be fascinated by this high-powered, intelligent, edge of your seat dystopian sci-fi action thriller.


My review...

This was an interesting rather epic book to read. There is a basic story line that seems to weave in and out. I say basic only in the sense of the word meaning fundamental. Two characters seemed to be the glue that held this story together for me. There was so much else going on that I needed that storyline to keep me focused.

If you can imagine a world being dystopic and in the midst of WWIII, then this is a picture of this book. This is a book about a world full of vampires, uglies, scary people, you name it. With all of this combined, there should be a cacophony of sound in your head or at least in the flow of your reading. So, while some of these vampire creatures and scary people might not be my thing, I think there is no question P.D. Alleva accomplished what he set out to write and he has created a very interesting read.   

read an excerpt...

“It’s in the blood, dear,” said Ellen, one of the women Sandy shared time and space with, her skin worn by age, hard labor, and days spent under the sun. Blotches, liver spots and creases led the observer to the eyes. One dark, the other a cataract milky white and she always wore a dark shawl draped over the head and shoulders. Sandy was afraid of Ellen, she reminded Sandy of a gypsy or witch from a fairy-tale.

 “Come again?” said Sandy, her eyes shifting from soldier to Ellen to soldier then back to Ellen.

 Ellen had cut herself transferring a wood bucket filled with rice to add to an already large trough of buckets. A thick wood splinter pinned in the bottom of her palm dripping with a thick stream of blood. She turned to Sandy raising the bloodied palm and caught a drop of blood in her unwounded hand.

 “The blood dear,” said Ellen. “All magic comes from the blood.”

 Sandy cringed at the sight; she’d always been squeamish. Her stomach bumped, blood curled. Magic, Sandy thought. If only magic was real. How wonderful would that be? Sandy understood she was naïve, the result of an isolated childhood and her parents’ death when she was ten years old. Not that they had taught the young Sandy about the world she lived in either. They’d kept her under lock and key, never so much as offering a glimpse or advice on the outside world. They were always so cryptic with their explanations, living in an abundant and overgrown mansion as if luxury were a childhood friend. Sure there were plenty of rooms for a child to explore but as time went by those rooms seemed more like a prison than a home.

 Years of neglect, isolation and secrets were as torturous as physical suffering. And she was tired of secrets. She wanted to know truth. Truth was like a blanket that keeps you warm in the coldest winter.

 “The blood, Sandy,” said Ellen who clenched her fist around those crimson droplets, shaking her hand in front of her face. “All is in the blood.”


about P. D.  Alleva...

P.D. Alleva is an author, psychotherapist and hypnotherapist specializing in trauma, addiction and mental health. He is the author of several books, including fiction novels, Indifference and ABillion Tiny Moments In Time…, Seriously Twisted; These Gods of Darkness (Poetry), Let Your Soul Evolve (1st and 2nd ed), and Spiritual Growth Therapy: Philosophy, Practices and Mindfulness Workbook (non-fiction). He has developed behavioral protocols for addiction and mental health and teaches mindfulness, Buddhist meditations and manifestation techniques to his patients as a means and alternative to using pharmaceuticals. He is currently in private practice with his wife, Lisa. He lives with his wife and children in Boca Raton, Florida.

 

Social Media Info:

Website/Newsletter www.pdalleva.com

Facebook Page: @pdallevaauthor

Twitter: @PdallevaAuthor

Instagram: pdalleva_author

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/author/pdalleva

 

Buy link:

Amazon - https://www.amazon.com/Rose-Vol-Dystopian-Science-Thriller-ebook/dp/B089JTPJ8G


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