Whispers of Shadow & Flame by L. Penelope
Whispers of Shadow & Flame, book two in the
Earthsinger Chronicles is out now. To celebrate launch week, book one, Song of Blood & Stone, is on sale for $.99. In addition, there are some awesome things happening for launch week so check it out down below!
Whispers of Shadow & Flame (Earthsinger
by L. Penelope
Genre: Fantasy Romance, Dieselpunk
Age Range: Adult
Born with a deadly magic she cannot control, Kyara is forced
to become an assassin. Known as the Poison Flame, she is notorious and lethal,
but secretly seeks freedom from both her untamed power and the blood spell that
commands her. She is tasked with capturing the notorious rebel called the
Shadowfox, but everything changes when she learns her target’s true identity.
Darvyn ol-Tahlyro may
be the most powerful Earthsinger in generations, but guilt over those he
couldn’t save tortures him daily. He isn’t sure he can trust the mysterious
young woman who claims to need his help, but when he discovers Kyara can unlock
the secrets of his past, he can’t stay away.
As forbidden desire
ignites their hearts, Kyara and Darvyn grapple with betrayal, old promises, and
older prophecies—all while trying to stop a war. And when a new threat emerges,
the cost of their love might just
be too high.
sure we can come to some kind of understanding.”
man before Kyara scrambled backward, slamming his back against the wall. The
scent of his fear was rancid, filling the interior of the dwelling. The stench
overpowered the smell of fresh vegetables roasting in the clay oven. His
whimpers drowned out the murmurings of the infant in a basket near the fire. A
woman cowered next to the baby. Kyara judged the distance and determined that
the mother and child were far enough away to remain safe but only if she stood
very close to her target. Close enough to feel his sour breath on her skin.
stomach clenched at the thought, but she forced herself forward, erasing the
few paces between them. Now the odor emanating from the man was mixed with
piss. The dark stain spreading across the front of his trousers was proof
enough that the fellow knew who she was and why she was here.
can negotiate. I’m sure there must be something you want.” Beads of sweat
punctured his forehead, and the thick vein at his neck jumped with his rapid
warped Song prowled inside her, impatient. It wanted to launch itself into the
maelstrom of source energy, to ride the brutal currents of the force like a
kite in a violent wind. She shuddered and reined in her Song. Instead of giving
in to the despised urge, she opened her mind’s eye. The world fell away,
leaving only a field of black. She spread her senses and focused on this
village, this home, this room. Moving arcs of white light burst across her
vision, like the undulating waves of brightness produced by a fire dancer
swinging a torch.
Ydaris had explained to her many years ago, while Earthsong was the energy of
life, Nethersong was death energy. And Kyara’s broken Song had never been able
to connect with anything else. She could not heal. She could not grow crops
from seeds with a single intention or feel the pulse of life moving in the
plants and animals around her.
was cursed. She had killed her mother at birth, and this was her punishment.
light of the man before her pulsed brightly. His death energy was a cyclone
spinning out of control. Judging by the strength of Nethersong within him, he
had not been kind to his body—a feat much easier when you were on the True
Father’s payroll and could afford an abundance of rich food and drink. If the
immortal king were a patient man, Kyara wouldn’t be needed at all. This
pay-roller only had a few months to live as it was.
the corner of the room, the wife’s light was dimmer. She was younger and
healthier than her husband. The infant’s light was so weak it barely
registered. Just a dull glow indicated the faintest traces of Nethersong. Kyara
nearly smiled. Children had so much life, so much strength. She wished she
could always see an endless field of dark in her inner vision.
shuttered her extra sight, bringing the man’s face back into focus. “I am not
here to negotiate with you.” Her voice was no louder than a whisper.
eyes widened. He spread his arms out on both sides of him, attempting to press
himself into the wall. Kyara didn’t move from her position a hairbreadth away.
She didn’t need to touch him, but he didn’t know that.
His Majesty believes I’ve stolen, I will return, threefold. I am but a simple
man. A husband and father.” He waved a pudgy hand at the woman in the corner.
“I give tribute for all I collect, I pay on time and—” His pleas became a drone
in her ears, mingling with those of a hundred other men who had begged for
their lives over the years. Other men in other homes like this, the ramshackle
dwelling a palace in comparison to the others in the village. Thick rugs
covered the dirt floor, and real glass hung in the windows. The enticing aroma
of okra and butter tickled her nose. Some unidentifiable spice hung in the air,
as well. Fresh vegetables, seasonings, real butter—these luxuries were
virtually unknown to most people in the Midcountry.
her mouth watered, she never ate the food of the dead.
believes love is magic and likes her romance with a healthy dose of
imagination. She’s been writing since she could hold a pen and is the author
of new adult, fantasy, and paranormal romance with multicultural
At one time or another she’s been
a filmmaker, tape dubber, tech support specialist, model, poll worker,
professor, and DJ. She has a quote from The
Matrix tattooed on
her arm and sometimes dreams in HTML. After living on both coasts, she settled
in Maryland with her husband and their furry dependents: an eighty-pound
lap dog and an aspiring feral cat.
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Inspiration and writing what happens next
What happens next? That was the question I asked myself as soon as the edits were done on my first novel, Song of Blood & Stone. With a publication date set for the first book, I knew I had to get started on the next in the series. I had notes and rough outlines for the four books in the Earthsinger Chronicles, but that wasn’t the same thing as really knowing what was about to go down.
Before I could write it, I had to feel it. And to feel it, I had to walk down the road of heartbreak that my characters inevitably take – at least in my mind.
My inspiration comes from emotion – many times I’ll read or watch or listen to something that’s got me all in the feelings, and then I’ll try to figure out how to elicit those emotions in others.
For Whispers of Shadow& Flame, I was really interested in exploring what it would feel like to fall for the worst person imaginable? Like, someone who was trying to kill you, or someone you were supposed to kill or harm. Also, what would it feel like to have no control over what you did? What would you be willing to do to exert some autonomy over your life?
I was a teenager at one point, so I’m very well acquainted with that feeling of being strapped in by all the boundaries and wanting to break free. But adulthood isn’t the paradise we imagined as kids. There are still plenty of forces pulling us in different directions, as well as choices being made for us, and responsibilities we can’t shirk.
Writing, just as much as reading, has always been an escape for me. A way to work out frustrations and make the world make sense. Whether I’m reading about other peoples’ characters, or creating my own, I’m looking for that sense of freedom that comes from taking on another’s burdens, at least for a little while.
WHISPERS OF SHADOW & FLAME giveaway
Labels: adult, black, books, giveaway, romance