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.
“I LOVED the main character Hitomi in Sunbolt more than I’ve loved an MC in a long time. She was super scrappy, vulnerable, clever, big-hearted, and streetwise while maintaining an endearing innocence at the same time.”
“I was gripped from the start and found this story to be a very different take on what is actually a kind of vampire fantasy.”
In the year since she cast her sunbolt, Hitomi has recovered only a handful of memories. But the truths of the past have a tendency to come calling, and an isolated mountain fastness can offer only so much shelter. When the High Council of Mages summons Brigit Stormwind to stand trial for treason, Hitomi knows her mentor won’t return—not with Arch Mage Blackflame behind the charges.
Armed only with her magic and her wits, Hitomi vows to free her mentor from unjust imprisonment. She must traverse spell-cursed lands and barren deserts, facing powerful ancient enchantments and navigating bitter enmities, as she races to reach the High Council. There, she reunites with old friends, planning a rescue equal parts magic and trickery.
If she succeeds, Hitomi will be hunted the rest of her life. If she fails, she’ll face the ultimate punishment: enslavement to the High Council, her magic slowly drained until she dies.
“The story is vivid, believable and flows. The world is crystal clear before my eyes. The characters, too, are believable and grounded, compete with their conflicting motivations and imperfect information and judgment. I also really love that Hitomi has a bone-deep rejection of prejudices and an instinctive respect for different cultures. It’s a pleasure reading through her lens, not only because she is a wonderful character, excellently written, but because I actually respect her and all her motivations and decisions.”
“Spare, elegant prose, wondrous world building, believable magic, and characters with depth who you really get involved with. It has it all.”
Author note: The Sunbolt Chronicles are set in the fantastical Eleven Kingdoms, each of which are based on historical lands and cultures from around the world, ranging from historic Zanzibar to Ottoman-era Istanbul. So far, I’ve been able to draw on memories of places I’ve visited, and then supplemented that with reading first-hand accounts from early travelers, learning about historic social structures, gender norms, foods and crops, and talking to friends who might have first hand knowledge of the language and current-day culture. It was both intriguing and a bit overwhelming, but also so very awesome to create a diverse world.