Hello, friends! Long time, no blog. My apologies for missing a month. I, like many others, was consumed by the news of Russia’s attack on Ukraine. I still am. With many close friends in both Russia and Ukraine, it’s been a very emotional time. In addition to this, I’ve been working on a big project, and I’d like to share that with you now.
Heroes & Harbingers
Yesterday, I revealed the cover of my new book Heroes & Harbingers. It will release on 6/11/22 and become available for preorder on 4/19/22. If you think you may forget to preorder when that book becomes available, I recommend you follow me on Amazon Author Central for real-time updates. You can do that here.
But enough about dates. You likely want to skip to the cover and here it is!
You may notice the subtitle at the bottom is An Adult Fantasy Academia Novel. What does that mean? I wrote this book with two under-served audiences in mind.
The first audience includes teachers and other school staff. In my experience, these absolutely essential and under-appreciated professionals don’t get to see themselves in media enough. I know this because I used to be a teacher myself.
The second audience applies to a wider group. How many of us with 9-5 jobs, kids running around our house, and bills that stress us out grew up reading books about schools of magic? If you’re nodding your head, this book is for you. The problem is that the books didn’t grow up with us.
I did so much research and, despite knowing a few examples of books about magic schools for an adult audience, there didn’t seem to be an easy way to look up any books like that on Amazon (where pretty much every book is). That’s because it didn’t have a name and YA books saturate the magic academy market, burying all books for adult audiences far beneath them.
So, two nights ago I decided that I was going to come up with a new sub-genre, and shared it on Twitter. And, um…you could say that was a popular concept.
And those numbers keep clicking up. They were clicking during that screenshot. I think I read and responded to every comment, but there’s a decent chance I missed some, because this has been hard to keep track of (especially since I work in a tax firm and this is tax season). Most comments are “I would read that,” in second place are authors saying they have books that fit in this and they’ve been looking for a way to describe it, and then some people came up with examples of existing books or wanted more information about what it meant.
So, don’t be surprised if you see more of this in the future, and try searching for this sub-genre in Amazon if you’d like to read books that apply to this concept.
What is Heroes & Harbingers about?
Here’s the blurb I’ve written for the Amazon listing:
Food fights. Detention. Dissecting fairies for science class. Just another day at a Magical Public School.
Pavlina Sirin’s fate as a death harbinger has ruined her life. She longs to be more than a herald of doom, aspiring to impact lives in her teaching career. But when a new student with bold dreams joins her class, Pavlina’s dark power senses a terrible sacrifice to come.
Finn MacCool’s warrior past didn’t prepare him for a hundred years of teaching for his community service. Spending the last decade of his sentence at a new school, the immortal develops a crush on his tempting but aloof coworker. The Irish legend blows his chance when he butts heads with the Council of Pantheons’ latest brave heroine—who also happens to be Ms. Sirin’s favorite pupil.
However, the Chosen One’s quest isn’t all it seems. Pavlina’s lethal prophecies come to pass, and her gift warns of more to come. Will this daring trio of heroes have what it takes to make the grade, or will they fail before they even make it to Summer Break?
Set in an alternate reality of Jacksonville, Florida, this adult urban fantasy is the first book in the Secret of Pantheons series. If you enjoy a hearty helping of mythology, found family, and unbreakable bonds, this book is for you. Class is in session with Heroes & Harbingers—buy it now before the bell rings!
More about the characters
Pavlina Sirin is a death harbinger, specifically a Russian mythological bird woman called a sirin. You can learn more about sirins in my blog about them. She’s also a public school teacher, specializing in Magical History. While a death harbinger sounds scary, Ms. Sirin views it more as an opportunity to reach the dying in time to guide them to their afterlife and make it less frightening.
Finn MacCool (yes, MacCool) is an Irish legendary hero. And not just in my book. He’s a popular figure in Irish mythology. I plan on doing a blog on him in the future, but I’m having a difficult time making that succinct because there are a million and one different stories about him from every possible angle. In Heroes & Harbingers, however, he’s serving the last decade of his century-long community service as a public school teacher.
Another main character of the book is this century’s Chosen One (the Council of Pantheons top internship). Bree Castille, a freshman at the school Ms. Sirin and Mr. Finn work at, is more of the studious sort than the questing sor—but no one questions the gods in charge.
And what is the Council of Pantheons? It’s the world government that exists in this reality where magic is so commonplace that it’s used as an energy source, just like electricity. Saying much more than that enters the murky area of what might be Spoiler Land.
If you’ve been reading my blogs for a while, you know I’m a big fan of myths, folktales, and fairytales from around the world. I put a ton of that research into this book, and I really think you’ll enjoy it if you have the same interests as me. Just don’t give it to your kids. Trust me on this.
Oh, and one last thing
This book isn’t a standalone. It’s a series starter. I’m working on the next book now: Portals & Pantheons. Yes, a new series. I think I’m just a series writer. I get very attached to my characters, and it’s hard to say goodbye (I still miss my friends from the Telverin Trilogy). So, like I said earlier, you may want to follow me on Amazon’s Author Central. There’s so much more to come.
Did you like reading this? Then, you’ll love my book!
Struggling With the Current is the first book in The Telverin Trilogy, a story about an exiled princess who finds herself in a terrifying world with equally frightening powers.
Read the Beginning Now!
Click on the download button below to receive the prologue and first chapter.
Princess Eya’s life changes forever with the discovery of the Statue of the Goddess Winds, just as she’s coming of age. The long-overlooked kingdom of Hicares finds itself in a war it isn’t prepared for against the far more powerful empire of Pescel. To survive, Eya must flee her home, losing everything and everyone she loves in the process.
Yet, by leaving behind all she’s ever known, she learns that her sheltered life didn’t prepare her for the real world’s strange and frightening nature. She encounters people, places, and creatures beyond anything she ever imagined, along with sinister enemies from every direction. Perhaps her most surprising revelation is that she is developing terrifying powers of her own. Will Eya be able to find happiness in her new life, or will she continue struggling with the current?
Struggling With the Current is the first book of The Telverin Trilogy, a fantasy war story that takes place between several countries in the world of Telverin.