New Release! Sunbolt (The Sunbolt Chronicles, Book One) by Intisar Khanani!

 

NEW RELEASE!

 

 

Sunbolt
(The Sunbolt Chronicles, Book One)

 

by

 

Intisar Khanani

 

 

Available at:
 
Amazon ~ B&N ~ Kobo
 

 

★ Pay it Forward ★

 

A portion of the proceeds from the sale of Sunbolt will be donated to the United Nations Children’s Fund. UNICEF fights for the survival and development of the world’s most vulnerable children.

 

 

Cover Designer:

 

Serial Novella
Young Adult Fantasy

Publisher:

Purple Monkey Press

 

 

Synopsis

 

The winding streets and narrow alleys of Karolene hide many secrets, and Hitomi is one of them. Orphaned at a young age, Hitomi has learned to hide her magical aptitude and who her parents really were. Most of all, she must conceal her role in the Shadow League, an underground movement working to undermine the powerful and corrupt Archmage Wilhelm Blackflame.

When the League gets word that Blackflame intends to detain—and execute—a leading political family, Hitomi volunteers to help the family escape. But there are more secrets at play than Hitomi’s, and much worse fates than execution. When Hitomi finds herself captured along with her charges, it will take everything she can summon to escape with her life.
 

 

 

Excerpt One 

 

“Mgeni! Stay a moment; I have your future for you.”

I grin, turning towards the voice. Mama Ali sits beneath the cloth shade of her market stall, her husband’s catch heaped on the wooden counter before her: mounds of sardines, glinting silver bright in the sun. Today there’s also a single little octopus that must have gotten tangled in his nets, it’s fleshy body turned over to show the white of its tentacles.

With her wide smile and heavy girth, Mama Ali is a well-known fixture of the fish market, her laughter booming across the crowded aisles and her penchant for sharing people’s futures indulged in even by the locals. Her son, ten years old and shrewder than a hundred year-old owl, perches beside her, watching me.

“You can keep my future, Mama Ali,” I reply. “It will probably do you more good than me.”

My words draw laughter from the women at the surrounding stalls. The market stalls are packed tightly together, and every counter offers up the bounty of the sea, scenting the air with salt and sea. Above the stalls flap brightly-colored cloth shades, protecting both the women and the fish from the sun’s heat.

I hear someone ask what she missed, and a woman replies, calling me mgeni again. My smile slips a notch. I may have adopted the traditional, brightly colored long skirt and tunic of the local women, as well as the tightly wound head wrap, but my sand-gold skin and the slant of my eyes will always mark me as someone else. Mama Ali may use the term as an endearment, but the echoes I hear now brand me as an outsider.

Mama Ali holds out her hand imperiously, a queen demanding tribute from the riffraff that forms her court. “Come, my friend, keeper of secrets, let us see what we can.”

“What will you give me?” I ask, hoping ‘keeper of secrets’ is just a phrase she uses on potential customers. Regardless, I don’t have the coin to pay her, so I may as well be clear I won’t be giving anything.

“Give you? Your future, muddle-brain! And, because you are always admiring my wares, I will give it to you for free.”

“Oh, very well.” I acquiesce none too gracefully, offering Mama Ali my hand. Trying not to fidget, I wait, her palms clasped around my hand. I may be running a little late, but there’s no reason to think the meeting will have started on time. Besides, since I wasn’t invited in the first place, no one will miss me. “Don’t tell me I’m going to meet someone new, dark of skin and—”

“Short,” Mama Ali agrees.

I nearly choke. “Short?”

She drops her voice. “Well, if I want to be sure it happens, short is so much more likely than tall, isn’t it? At least,” she nods her head to suggest the market, not to mention the rest the island, “here.”

I laugh. I think this must be why Mama Ali and I get along so well. “Right. Short and dark.”

“No.” She pulls a frown. “For you, something different.”

I glance towards the sky, gauging the angle of the late morning sun. Magic is one thing, but divining the future? Not so much. “I really have to—”

“You are going somewhere,” Mama Ali intones, closing her eyes. I glance at her son in disbelief. Ali grins wide, his teeth showing pearly white against his earth-brown skin.

“I was before you stopped me,” I agree.

Mama Ali heaves a theatrical sigh, squeezing my hand rather painfully. “Somewhere important,” she clarifies. She tilts her head as if listening for something. And Mama Ali hears a lot—she has her pulse on the happenings of Karolene. Maybe there is something she knows. Has she heard something about the League? Or the Ghost?

She drops my hand, sitting back with a gasp. “Run!”
 

 

Excerpt Two

 

“Look what’s here,” the leader says, calling the other soldiers’ attention to me. My steps falter as they veer towards me, quickly closing the distance between us. “What do you think she is? A mutt or a half-breed?”

A half-breed they might not bother because those who are half-human and half-something-else often have some strength or ability that could cause more trouble than these men are looking for. Unfortunately for me, the secret I guard is fully human. I glance sideways at the fish seller in the stall beside me, wondering if I can count on her. She is young, no more than a handful of years past my own fifteen, her eyes wide with panic. No help there. I swallow hard, trying to ease the fear thrumming through my veins.

I begin to back away, offering a hesitant smile to the soldiers. A smile? What am I doing? I should run—

But it’s already too late. Two of the soldiers have moved ahead of the others, circling past me. I’m surrounded.

“Mutt,” says one of the soldiers, taking in my features. I feel myself flush slightly. My parents may have been from different lands, but a good number of islanders have other blood in them, even if it dates back a few generations. How else did the noble women come by their sleek hair? Their problem isn’t with my bloodline. It’s with the fact that I visibly don’t belong, and I’m an easy target.

“Half-breed,” two others posit, their boots sounding unnaturally loud in the quiet.

“Definitely a mutt,” a soldier behind me says. He’s come to a stop a couple paces away, no doubt waiting for his leader to make the first move.

“Well, girl, what are you?” the leader asks.

I refuse to answer in the words they’ve afforded me. “Human,” I say. “Sir.”
 

 

AUTHOR BIO

 


 
Intisar Khanani grew up a nomad and world traveler. Born in Wisconsin, she has lived in five different states as well as in Jeddah on the coast of the Red Sea. She first remembers seeing snow on a wintry street in Zurich, Switzerland, and vaguely recollects having breakfast with the orangutans at the Singapore Zoo when she was five.

Intisar currently resides in Cincinnati, Ohio, with her husband and two young daughters. Until recently, she wrote grants and developed projects to address community health and infant mortality with the Cincinnati Health Department—which was as close as she could get to saving the world. Now she focuses her time on her two passions: raising her family and writing fantasy.

Intisar’s latest projects include a companion trilogy to her debut novel Thorn, featuring a new heroine introduced in her free short story The Bone Knife…and of course, she’s hard at work on the remaining installments of The Sunbolt Chronicles.

 

Author Pages

 

 

 

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Gift card giveaway: Cover Reveal for Blackout by @Alecia_Stone

 
 

COVER REVEAL

 
 

 
 

Blackout

(T.O.E. Trilogy, Book 2)

 

by

 

Alecia Stone

 

Release Date: March 19, 2014

Centrinian Publishing Ltd

 
Summary from Goodreads:
 
What was shall no longer be. Was was not shall now become.

Despite having the protection of the talisman and the Legion, a reforming force of warrior angels and elementals, guarding his every move, things are not looking good for Charlie Blake. Tasked with the responsibility of saving mankind, finding the four diamonds to restore the talisman is all he can think of, but when his prophetic visions start to invade his reality and he suddenly can’t distinguish the dream world from the real world, the pending extinction of mankind becomes the least of his problems. Everyone assumes Charlie’s dormant powers are activating, until he starts showing symptoms of a deadly disease.

With his nemesis, Gaddis, threatening the lives of his loved ones, he faces a race against time to locate Raphael’s Stone, the air diamond, before an imminent pandemic destroys civilization. As he ventures into dangerous lands once again, he unearths shocking revelations about his past life that forces him to question his allegiance. With no one to turn to for answers, he can’t help but wonder if his purpose is truly to save mankind.

 
Excerpt from Blackout:
 

Charlie’s eyes shifted back and forth between Derkein and the knife. Derkein had a look in his eyes he didn’t recognise. This wasn’t the man he had moved in with. He wasn’t the man who was soon to become his adoptive father. This was an impostor.
‘My father always said everything happened for a reason,’ Derkein said, ‘but he never met you. What good is immortality if I’m stuck in one place?’ He stopped and dropped his arm by his side, the knife slipping out of his grasp and landing with a clunking noise on the marble floor.
Charlie stopped, leaving a few inches between him and Derkein, who was standing with a guarded stance. Charlie couldn’t help but wonder who was more afraid of whom.
‘You’ve left me to rot in this god forsaken world for the rest of my life, so forgive me if I seem a tad ungrateful,’ Derkein went on in a flat tone. His blank expression left no room for interpretation. ‘If I have to rot in hell, I don’t see why I should have to suffer alone.’
Charlie didn’t see it coming. Derkein lunged at him, grabbed him by the arms, and thrust him backwards. Charlie waited for the collision of his back with the conservatory door, but the impact didn’t occur. Instead, he found himself falling and landing hard on his back in darkness. The only source of light came from the kitchen ahead of him where Derkein was standing.
‘Why do you look so surprised?’ Derkein asked. ‘What did you expect was going to happen when you resurrected me, or did I not deserve the common courtesy of a conscious thought? I’m not like you. I’m not like them. Tell me, Charlie. What am I, exactly?’
Charlie rose up into a sitting position. He didn’t have the answers Derkein was seeking. ‘I’m sorry.’ The words barely escaped his mouth.
‘Yeah. Me too.’ In the blink of an eye, Derkein and the kitchen vanished, leaving Charlie in complete darkness. He sat in the empty silence, waiting. It wasn’t until he heard his rapid breathing that he realised panic had overcome him. Charlie scampered to his feet and charged ahead of him, ramming into the hard, rough texture of a brick wall.
‘Derkein!’ he yelled, pounding the wall with his fists. ‘Derkein, please –’
‘Sol.’
Charlie felt a crawling sensation move down his spine as a shrill voice echoed around him. With his palms braced against the wall, he remained still as the voice slowly faded. He held his breath as silence invaded the space once again. When the voice didn’t return, he made a move to the right, running his hand over the wall as he searched for the door.
Within seconds, he felt a tingle of cold air on the back of his neck that made him jump, and he released his breath. He spun around, shifting his head left and right, but his eyes couldn’t penetrate the darkness that surrounded him.
He reached up towards his neck and froze. The rhythm of his heart accelerated as he moved his hand over his chest in search of the familiar touch of the two silver rings he had become so accustomed to over the past five years, but the chain wasn’t around his neck. Although he couldn’t see anything, he suddenly felt as though the darkness was closing in on him, compressing his lungs as if attempting to stifle him.

A spotlight appeared a few feet in front of him, and his heart stopped. He gulped down the lump forming in his throat as he stared at the figure submerged in the light, dangling about two feet off the ground.
 

 

About the author Alecia Stone

 

Alecia Stone is a full-time writer who spends most of her days with her head in a book. She loves anything and everything paranormal – the stranger the better. Her fascination with all things supernatural sparked her obsession with books, particularly young adult fantasy fiction, which she has never grown out of. She graduated with a BA in Film & TV and has worked in television for a short period of time before branching out into storytelling.

When she’s not writing, she enjoys watching movies and travelling. Blackout is the sequel to the Amazon bestselling YA fantasy novel Talisman Of El. She currently lives in the UK with her family.
 

Author Links:

 

Website ¦ Facebook ¦ Twitter ¦ Pinterest ¦ Goodreads

 

Cover Reveal Organised by:

 

 

Blackout Cover Reveal Giveaway

Ends March 31st.

International. Open to anyone who can receive gifted ebooks from amazon.com and gift cards from either amazon.com or amazon.co.uk. Alternatively, gift card winners may opt for Paypal cash ($10) or a book of choice from The Book Depository ($10).
 

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