Hello to all! (Read all the way to the bottom for a giveaway. I entered!)
I have been making a ton of new author friends these days. Networking has been a joy and a mind-broadening thing for me as I learn from “the greats” in both my publishing house, Cleanreads.com, and well as with other independently published “Indie” (self-published) authors. Now that I am both traditionally published as well as have Indie books, I am considered “hybrid.” Yeah, I’ve been learning all new lingo too. 😉
One of the amazing women I’ve met and befriended this year, is an American working at a school in Taiwan, and has lived multiple places around the world. She tirelessly promoted Lucent Sylph for me this past year, even inspiring some of her students to read the book! Her name is Annie Douglass Lima. Doesn’t she just look cool? 🙂
She is a sweet, very polite woman (Haha, Annie! ;-)) who is gracious, well-spoken, and, of course, an excellent author.
Her first book, The Collar and the Cavvarach, re-imagines our modern world with slavery still in place. It’s a fascinating and sobering look at what it would be like if we were enslaved in today’s society. The main character, Bensin, is a martial arts expert (in the Annie-inspired fighting style called Cavvara shil.
The first book was sweet and like slice-of-a-different-kind-of-life that made me think of warm bread straight out of the oven (I always imagine books that I read and write as foods, usually desserts. :-P) Bensin’s Coach is a male ESFJ, as well, so that was a major plus for me! The end gets especially exciting when Bensin is focused on freeing his little sister from a life of slavery, indentured to take care of a baby in a house that treats her with neglect. My youngest daughter cosplayed as Bensin’s sister Ellie for a contest this month. 😀 She wrote the sign, and really got into her role. 😀
The Collar and the Cavvarach was a great PG family-friendly book, for like ages 12+, and I enjoyed it a ton.
In the YA sequel, The Gladiator and the Guard, however, Annie takes the story and the stakes up a notch. Because of an injustice, our poor Bensin is sentenced to be a gladiator. I haven’t finished the book yet, because I have the immense pleasure of beta-reading for the author, and just going through the book and writing my thoughts to her as I go – like a conversation between friends (Squeal! I’m so blessed!) But I can tell you this book is a PG-13 with more intense action and excitement! What I love most is seeing all of the characters grow. Poor Ellie (now I picture my own daughter!), Coach and his Conscience (Yes, the Conscience is practically another character 😉 ), and Bensin go through temptations, attitudes, failures, and moral dilemmas. I am dying to see what happens at the end!
If you like arena-game stories of survival and courage and character growth, please check out the entire Krillonian Chronicles series by Annie Douglass Lima!
To whet your appetite, here’s an excerpt:
Ian was overseeing the glads in his ten while they sparred on Monday, and Bensin
had just successfully disarmed Fifty-Five, when they were interrupted.
“Riddior wants to see Fifty and Fifty-Eight,” a guard announced to Ian.
Their trainer nodded, apparently not surprised. “Go,” he told Bensin and Fifty.
Bensin started to unbuckle the shil he was wearing, but the guard stopped him
with a shake of the head. “You’ll need that. Bring the cavvarach too.”
They crossed the large room, skirting the other tens’ training zones. Bensin and
Fifty glanced over their shoulders every now and then to see where the guard wanted
them to go. Guards never led the way in the arena; they always made glads walk ahead.
They don’t trust us not to attack them from behind.
At the other end of the room, a group of about twenty glads had gathered in
front of the training manager. The tall Skeyvian was laughing and joking with them like
no one else in the arena ever did. Riddior was easy to get along with.
“So,” he said, when Bensin and Fifty had joined them. “You’re all here because
you’re the best of our best at cavvara shil, and you’re going to get to prove it to the world
Instantly, a knot formed in Bensin’s stomach. I’m not ready to fight again. Sure, he
had been taking some sort of herbal concoction every day — down from twice a day at
the beginning — that was supposed to hasten the healing process, and it did seem to be
working. True, when he had been summoned to the clinic last week, Doc had taken
another X-ray and announced that his rib was back to normal. It didn’t hurt anymore
when he stretched or breathed deeply. His concussion symptoms were long gone, his
nose was better, and the wound on his face only really hurt if he tried to smile too wide.
But he hadn’t found many things to smile about, so that wasn’t a problem.
Still, Bensin didn’t feel ready to pick up a cavvarach again and face possible death
and dismemberment out on the sand.
Annie Douglass Lima spent most of her childhood in Kenya and
later graduated from Biola University in Southern California. She and her
husband Floyd currently live in Taiwan, where she teaches fifth grade at
Morrison Academy. She has been writing poetry, short stories, and novels since
her childhood, and to date has published twelve books (two YA action and
adventure novels, four fantasies, a puppet script, and five anthologies of her
students’ poetry). Besides writing, her hobbies include reading (especially
fantasy and science fiction), scrapbooking, and international travel.
Connect with the Author Online:
Now, enter to win an Amazon gift card or a free digital copy of The Collar and the Cavvarach!