Light against Shadow
First of all, a big thank you to Danielle for hosting me here today. And a thank you to all the readers who stop by. One lucky commenter will win a set of my Shadow books, Shadow Bound, Shadow Fall, and my September release, Shadowman. And by the way, part one of my Shadow world novella series, Shadow Touch, is FREE today on Kindle and Nook.
Shadow in my series is synonymous with magic and it exists in a realm I call Twilight—a realm everyone accesses in their dreams or for inspiration. It’s where all the stories (and nightmares) are true. Twilight is inhabited by the fae, the darkest of which is Shadowman, my hero. He’s also known to the western world as the Grim Reaper, and his duty for all is to escort souls from the mortal world, across Twilight, to the Hereafter.
Trouble is, he fell in love with one of those souls, Kathleen O’Brien. And he believes that she got sent to Hell and is being tormented there for his crime of trespassing into to the mortal world to love her. This is unjust, so he builds a gate to Hell to fetch her back.
One of the major conflicts in Shadowman involves the Gate, which is as evil as the realm to which it leads. Angels on earth find out about it and will stop at nothing to make certain it’s destroyed. It’s light against Shadow, Order against magic, and both sides are willing to fight to the death to defend their cause. My angels do their best for the good of humankind, but they are not all-knowing.
Here’s an excerpt of the two at odds:
Custo stood, shaking his head and regarded the gate again. “You can’t think for a moment that The Order will suffer that… that… thing on Earth.”
“That thing?” Death mocked, standing again.
“The Order would call it an abomination.”
“And what would you call it?”
“Seriously fucked up.”
Shadowman gripped the hammer, a tool of the angels. With it, he could forge the gate. Barbed and brutal, the gate’s only decorative element was a couple of spare flowers, the kind that could grow in the harshest, darkest clime. Three wrought iron, triangular petals were folded close to guard the core. The blooms were desperate hope, a symbol that Kathleen could endure beyond, her soul bearing the empty pitch until he could find her.
“Are you going to tell them?” Death asked.
“I’m part of The Order,” Custo said. “The angels can read my mind. I couldn’t hide this if I wanted to. And I don’t. We’ve had enough trouble dealing with the last forbidden passage you created between the worlds. Wraiths are still plaguing humankind. There’s a war out there. Don’t open up a way even more dangerous.”
Shadowman glanced at the gate.
kat-a-kat-a-kat-a-kat, the gate answered, trembling on its posts. The gate had been talking to him like that since it had been mounted.
And he knew he could not wait to retrieve Kathleen from Hell. There was no higher purpose in her presence there that he could fathom. No order or justice to her damnation. He broke the law, but Kathleen suffered in Hell. There was nothing to do but fetch her back.
“Look ahead, if you can,” Custo said, the green forcing out the black in his eyes. His urgency, thick and pungent, saturated the shadows. “I beg you to look ahead.”
So Shadowman answered with a question of his own. “And if it were your Annabella?”
Custo went silent, breathing deeply, thinking of the beautiful ballerina who was his wife. It didn’t take long for his mouth to twist.
“It hurts you even to think of it, yet Kathleen is there, right now.”
Shadowman turned to regard the gate. At his side, Custo did the same. The potent menace coming off the thing was palpable. Shadow shimmered against the hell-throb of his creation. A gate to Hell, forged by Death.
Shadowman felt the moment Custo came to a decision, his hard resolve overcoming the wilder emotions.
“I begged for a day once, and that’s what I’ll give you,” Custo said. “Then I swear I’ll bring the angels. We will rip it apart, even if you, Kathleen, or… or… even Annabella are behind it. It is Wrong. You fae obviously have trouble telling the difference.”
Right? Wrong? Shadowman didn’t care. Death, by nature and necessity, was numb to such considerations.
“I don’t require your permission, boy.” The pain of his grip on the hammer crawled over his shoulder.
“Mark my words,” Custo said, summoning Shadow to depart. “The angels are coming.”
“Mark mine,” Death returned. “I’ll have her back.”
They haunt the halls of the Segue Institute, terrifying the living, refusing to cross over. But one soul is driven by a very different force.
It survives even death. And Kathleen O'Brien swore she would return to those she was forced to leave too soon.
He broke every rule to have her in life; now he will defy the angels to find her in death.
Forging it is his single hope of being reunited with his beloved, but through it an abomination enters the world. Leaving a trail of blood and violence, the devil hunts her too. Pursued through realms of bright fantasy and dark reality, Kathleen is about to be taken...
Places to purchase:
Erin Kellison is the author of the Shadow Series, which includes Shadow Bound and Shadow Fall, as well as the upcoming Shadowman (Sept 2011), and the e-novella Shadow Touch (June 2011). Stories have always been a central part of Erin's life. She attempted her first book in sixth grade, a dark fantasy adventure, and she still has those early hand-written chapters. She graduated summa cum laude with a degree in English Language and Literature and went on for a masters in Cultural Anthropology, focusing on oral storytelling. When she had children, nothing scared her anymore, so her focus shifted to writing fiction.
Places to find Erin:
As Erin stated, she will be giving one lucky commenter a set of all of her Shadow books, including her new release Shadowman-open to international shipping. Yay! I also will be giving out a copy of Shadow Bound-open to US shipping. So that means TWO different winners. So make sure you fill out the Rafflecopter form and leave a comment with an email address.