Plus there’s a giveaway!
Iolite, the youngest of seven sisters, was born a frundle, a rare condition that makes her both shunned and feared in Ilari. This has made her family doubly protective of her, even though she only wants to live a normal life and have the sorts of adventures her sisters do.
Although frundles suffer from some physical and emotional challenges, they also have valuable powers that no one discusses. Iolite learns more when she forges a connection with a roving army on horseback from far away Mongolia. She soon learns that the adventure-loving men she enjoys riding with in her visions are planning to invade her homeland.
When the Mongols send envoys to discuss terms of surrender, Iolite goes into a trance and serves as translator. Her family fears for her, knowing such trances can damage a frundle’s health. But her own people become a more serious threat to her when a secret cabal inside of Ilari’s army contrives to imprison Iolite and force her to become on ongoing source of information.
How much does a daughter of the realm owe her country? Iolite has plenty of time to ponder the question trapped in her cold dark cell.
What she does once she is freed will determine the fate of her people.
About the Series
The War Stories of the Seven Troublesome Sisters consists of seven short companion novels. Each tells the personal story and perspective of one of seven radically different sisters in the 1200s as they prepare for an invasion of their realm. While these historical fantasy/alternate history books can be enjoyed as stand-alone novels, together they tell the full story of how Ilari survived.
Which sister saved the realm? That will depend on whose story you are reading.
How do they do it? Each sister offers surprise information on why this didn’t go as anyone planned.
S.R. is giving away a $10 Amazon or B&N gift card (winners choice) with this tour:
“What’s your name?”
I didn’t know whether to answer the stranger or not. We seemed to both be in jail, yet I had no idea why. He wore well-tailored clothes on his tall, thin frame, so other than looking like he could use a good meal or two, he appeared refined.
“What are we doing in here?” I said.
“Ah, yes. That is the question. You’ll figure it out in time.”
We stared at each other between the thick metal bars. Me annoyed. Him amused.
“Iolite. My name is Iolite.”
“Really? Another one named for a stone? Your parents certainly lacked imagination, didn’t they?”
I said nothing. I’d learned long ago that engaging in meaningful conversation with the people in these dreams was pointless. I avoided it.
I already knew I’d meet this man eventually. If my previous dreams were any indication, he’d look the way he did here but he’d speak for himself, not echo my thoughts. We might find ourselves in jail when it happened, but more likely it would just feel like a jail to me. I’d probably meet him at a time when I felt confined by circumstances. Sadly, my dreams conveyed more about my future emotions than they did about any future reality, making their information hard to use.
“I’ve had enough of this,” I said to him. “I’m going to wake up.”
He shrugged. “Suit yourself.” Then he chuckled. “See you around.”
He kept laughing at his own witticism until he went into a fit of coughing and I woke up grateful to be in my small cot. Many of the girls at the school shared rooms with others, but I was allowed to sleep alone. At times like this, it was a blessing.
I pulled the blankets closer around my body trying to stay warm, thinking I didn’t mind the physical oddities life thrust upon me when it made me a frundle. Okay, my short stature was sometimes a nuisance but I rather liked my silver hair. I found my purple eyes attractive, too, though plenty of others averted their gaze rather than look into them. I always wondered what they feared.
My dreams, however, did present an actual problem. They had started a year ago, and happened more often now, leaving me wide awake in the middle of the night filled with questions. I kept both the dreams and the questions to myself. I knew people didn’t mind frundles, as long as they stayed in the background and caused no trouble.
The only troublesome ones were the ones who had the dreams. Or worse yet, the dreams and episodes.
But I wasn’t that kind. Not yet. Not as far as anyone knew.
Because I’d never had a single episode. For you can hide the dreams, but there is no way to hide that.
She’s made a lot of stops along the way. She’s lived in seven cities, visited forty-six countries, and worked as a waitress, technical writer, and geophysicist. She’s lost several cats but acquired a husband who still loves her and three kids who’ve grown up fine, both despite how odd she is.
These days she lives in the mountains of Western North Carolina, where she also answers a hot-line, does things to improve her writing, and volunteers for the Science Fiction Writers of America (SFWA) of which she’ s proud member.
It is her life’s dream to tell these kinds of stories or be Chief Science Officer on the Starship Enterprise. She admits to occasionally checking her phone for a message from Captain Picard, just in case.
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