Happy first day of spring, everyone! Well, I suppose that means more to some of us than others, with winter still lingering like an unwanted house guest in many places. It's been a busy year for me so far, and it isn't showing any signs of easing up with the new season. I wouldn't have it any other way!
The release of the Curses, Fates & Soul Mates Box Set on February 17th went remarkably well. The feedback has been incredible! It was such a pleasure working with Kristie Cook, Lynn Rush, R.K. Ryals, and Rachael Wade on this project. If you haven't checked out the set and the work of these amazing writers, I hope you do so soon!
My next project is releasing Return of the Ascendant (The Ascendant Series #1) on its own on April 8th. Since many of my readers already picked up "ROTA" in the box set, I've written a couple of new bonus chapters that will only be available in the version releasing on April 8th. I'm really looking forward to sharing ROTA with the world!
If you'd like to be a part of the ROTA launch, please reach out to me at Raine(at)RaineThomas(dot)com. In the meantime, I hope you'll enjoy this excerpt from the book!
Excerpt from Return of the Ascendant by Raine Thomas
The stranger looked down at her. “What you felt back there
in the shadows was no figment of your imagination. There is real danger
threatening you. We must leave now.”
Avana’s eyes widened, all traces of humor gone. “Danger? My
Well, that’s what it sounded like to Kyra. The inflection on
the last three words was weird, though. She wondered if her friend was having a
stroke. Or maybe Kyra was having one. Anything was possible.
“You didn’t foresee this?” Sam asked Avana.
She shook her head, looking troubled.
“Foresee what?” Kyra asked, tossing her hands into the air.
“What danger are you talking about?” Sam asked the stranger,
stepping closer to him and Kyra. “Is it—?”
“Yes,” the man said.
Sam exchanged another look with Avana, who now looked
“Okay, what the hell is going on here?” Kyra asked, crossing
her arms over her chest. “I get that I was wrong about the whole double date
thing, but if you all think I’m in some kind of danger, then I have the right
“Not now,” the stranger interrupted. “We must leave this
He tried to take her arm again. She jerked away, bristling
over his rudeness. “I’m not going anywhere without an explanation.”
“You know how stubborn she is, Ty,” Sam told the man. “You
should just use your abilities now and be done with it.”
Kyra’s eyes widened. “Sam!” she exclaimed. “Use his what on me? What do you mean, he knows
how stubborn I—?”
“I have already tried that,” the man she supposed was named
Ty said. “For some reason, it won’t work.”
Opening her mouth to launch another question, Kyra paused
when Avana stepped forward and touched her arm. Her friend wore a much more
somber expression than Kyra had ever seen from her.
“Kyra, I know you’re confused right now. But you have to
trust us. Have I ever lied to you?”
Hesitating, Kyra looked around at the three serious faces
gazing back at her. Her eyes settled on Ty’s before she said, “No.”
Avana took her hand, once again drawing her attention. “Then
please trust me when I say that you have to come with us right now. Your life
and the lives of many others depend upon it.”
“It has been said that with great power
comes great responsibility and that is true. However, what should have been
added to that saying was that with great responsibility must come even greater
self-control. For those with great power often seem to lack the power of
self-control. Not that I have any such difficulty.” ~Perizada of the Fae
I am nearly three centuries old. I have seen
civilizations rise and then crumble like sand beneath the evening tide. I have
watched kings be exalted on their thrones, only to be ripped down and trampled
upon as the next great name is being written over the fallen. I myself have
fought in battles and felt the warm spray of my enemy’s blood upon my face as I
cut them down. I have laughed in the face of danger, danced on the edge of
death with the warlocks, played chicken with the wolves, riddled with the
pixies, and yet, the thing I fear most does not come at the end of a sword. The
thing I fear most comes at the will of another. It is not something I can
force, it is not something I can change, and it is not something I can control.
So, in short, I don’t like it.
At this point you might be asking yourself who
I am and why anything I say matters. Well listen up and listen good because I’ll
only say this once. Don’t bother to point out to me that you can come back to
these pages and read it over again, it will only piss me off, and the last
thing anyone needs is a member of the high fae pissed off at them.
I am Perizada, a member of the council of the
high fae. I was chosen long ago by the Great Luna, the creator of the
werewolves in case you were wondering, to be an ambassador if you will—between
the fae and the wolves. You see, the fae are the most powerful of all the
supernatural beings. Therefore, the Great Luna saw fit to make us the overseers
and law enforcers of the supernatural world. I did as the Great Luna asked and
became the go between for the Wolves and the council of high fae.
As time passed, the werewolves’ vulnerabilities
as a species, their tendencies toward divisiveness and territorialism, began to
weaken the packs. In an effort to aid the wolves, the Great Luna, in her
infinite wisdom, presented the packs with a gift—gypsy healers. These are
humans with an affinity for healing magic. So it was that a gypsy healer was
chosen from the tribes of gypsies and given to each pack. It was then that the
Great Luna decided that it would be best if the high fae were assigned a
certain number of packs and healers to oversee. I was given the packs in the
region of Romania. At one time they were divided into two packs but after the
werewolf wars, the two became one and now are under the rule of one great
Alpha, Vasile Lupei. That is how I came to be the liaison to the Romanian pack.
But that is not really where my story begins, for that we must go back a little
further. Now I will condense this as
much as possible to bring you up to speed so that you don’t feel the need stab
yourself in the eye out of boredom.
the great werewolf wars, there was a powerful fae, the most powerful in fact.
His name was Volcan. His power—and lust for more of it—became an obsession.
Unbeknownst to the high council, he began to create witches and wizards with
his dark magic and began releasing them into the human population. Once the
council found out, we knew he had to be stopped. A desperate battle was fought
between Volcan and an alliance of wolves and fae. Volcan’s castle was raided,
and at the cost of many lives, he was defeated.
But the battle was not without other
consequences. The land surrounding the castle, now known as the dark forest,
was left so immersed in dark magic that it posed a danger to all of our realms.
The High Council, after much deliberation, decided to seal off the dark forest,
forever preventing anyone, mortal or supernatural from entering. Because the
dark magic that remained was terrible, however, we decided additional steps
were necessary to ensure no one would ever be allowed to harness that power,
even ourselves. The Council, combing our magic, weaved a spell that would erase
the memories of anyone who was involved in the battle, including our own. To
ensure that the memory of the dark forest could be recalled if ever the need
arose, the tale of the battle was written in the fae archives. We thought that
by taking away the memory of that place we could prevent its evil from being
used. We were wrong.
It turns out that when someone wants something
bad enough, they will figure out a way to make it happen. Fast forward a few hundred
centuries and we will be caught up to speed. Lorrelle, another member of the
high fae, my sister and sick in the head I might add, decided she wanted me
dead. To accomplish such an insurmountable task, she aligned herself with
Reyaz, an evil warlock. In order to help him with his own evil goals, she
searched and eventually discovered the history of the dark forest and her
memory of that battle was restored.
Reyaz, being the evil butthead that he was, kidnapped some of the female
mates of the wolves and warlocks—dick move if you ask me. But then, he didn’t
ask me, go figure. He imprisoned them in the dark forest and then sent their
mates on a morbid scavenger hunt for them. The crap hit the fan, people died,
people were born, yadda-yadda. But we don’t have time to get into all that.
What you need to know is that when Reyaz put the females in the dark forest, he
unknowingly set free a member of the Romanian pack who had been inadvertently
trapped there when the forest was sealed, unknown to all of us and thought
dead. Lucien, Vasile’s brother is alive, and has been for all these centuries,
trapped in the dark forest by our magic.
Okay so for those of you who don’t like history
and are nearly snoozing by now—WAKE UP. This is important, like life altering,
weather changing, mountain moving important and it’s also most unwelcome.
Thanks to the Great Luna and her bloody love-fest, the wolves are able to find
true mates with the fae and you guessed it―yours truly is the true mate to one
Lucien Lupei. In the words of the great John McClain, Yippi- ki-ya, Mother--,
and I’ll stop there lest someone get their panties in wad.
So now that you’re up to speed, I suppose we
can get this party started. Things are going to be moving fast so if you need
to get some beauty rest before you start this journey with me, I suggest you do
that right about now. But if you’re ready and you think you got what it takes
to keep up with me, then keep reading, (insert creepy voice), my pretties. We have a psycho bitch fae to catch, a mate
to deter, and lives to save. There is no time for dilly dallying or wishy washy
pansy ass whining. If you’re in this with me, then you are in it ‘til the end.
And the first one of you that cracks a joke about the whole being mated to a
werewolf thing will be farting out of their mouth every time they hear the word
gas and burping from their butts every time someone laughs for the rest of
their stinky, noisy existence.
As my good friend Jen would say, let’s do this.
Okay she would say him, but we’re going
to go with this in an effort to keep
things rated PG.
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THE SPACE BETWEENby Kristie Cook: Self-contained dancer Leni Drago and inked-and-pierced playboy Jeric Winters must discover the truth behind their connection as well as their ties to a journal from 1989 – and they must do it fast, before all evidence that they ever existed disappears. Two love stories, one mystery and a paranormal twist that readers call “mind blowing.”
Kristie Cook is a lifelong, award-winning writer in various genres, from marketing communications to fantasy fiction. She continues to write the Soul Savers Series, a New Adult paranormal romance/ contemporary fantasy, with the first five of seven books, Promise, Purpose, Devotion, Power, and Wrath currently available. She’s also written a companion novella, Genesis: A Soul Savers Novella, currently available. Over 300,000 Soul Savers books have been sold, with Promise peaking at #54 on the Amazon Top 100 Paid list and at #1 in the Amazon Fantasy category. The Space Between kicks off her second New Adult paranormal series, The Book of Phoenix, with part two, The Space Beyond, releasing in 2014.
Besides writing, Kristie enjoys reading, cooking, traveling and riding on the back of a motorcycle. She has lived in ten states, but currently calls Southwest Florida home with her husband, three sons, a beagle and a puggle.
FROSTBITEby Lynn Rush: Love is warm and fuzzy for most people, and it would be for eighteen-year-old Amanda Smith, too, if her kisses didn't cause frostbite.
About Lynn Rush
Driven to write, Lynn Rush often sees her characters by closing her eyes, watching their story unfold in her mind. Lynn Rush is a pen name that is a combination of two sources – Lynn, the first name of her mother-in-law, who passed away and Rush – since the author is a former inline speed skater and mountain biker. All of Rush’s books are dedicated to Lynn, her namesake.
CURSEDby R.K. Ryals: Sometimes being bad is better… A vintage-loving witch. A cocky demon. An old grimoire. An ancient curse. A family secret that changes everything.
About the Author
R.K. Ryals is the author of emotional and gripping young adult and new adult paranormal romance, contemporary romance, and fantasy. With a strong passion for charity and literacy, she works as a full time writer encouraging people to "share the love of reading one book at a time." An avid animal lover and self-proclaimed coffee-holic, R.K. Ryals was born in Jackson, Mississippi and makes her home in the Southern U.S. with her husband, her three daughters, a rescue dog named Oscar the Grouch, A Shitzsu named Tinkerbell, an OCD cat, and a coffee pot she honestly couldn't live without. Should she ever become the owner of a fire-breathing dragon (tame of course), her life would be complete.
RETURN OF THE ASCENDANTby Raine Thomas: Party plans derail for college student Kyra Vaughn when she’s nearly killed…twice. She’ll have to rely on a sexy stranger with unusual abilities to keep her alive and help her discover who she’s destined to be.
About the Author
Raine Thomas is the award-winning author of bestselling Young Adult and New Adult fiction. Known for character-driven stories that inspire the imagination, Raine recently signed with multiple award-winning producer Chase Chenowith of Back Fence Productions to bring her popular Daughters of Saraqael trilogy to the big screen. She's a proud indie author who is living the dream.
Raine is a hopeless romantic with a background in the fields of mental health and wedding planning...two areas that intersect far more than one would think. Her years working with children and young adults with emotional and behavioral challenges inspired her to create protagonists who overcome their own conflicts. When she isn't writing or glued to e-mail or social networking sites, Raine can usually be found vacationing with her husband and daughter on one of Florida's beautiful beaches or crossing the border to visit with her Canadian friends and relatives.
REPOSSESSIONby Rachael Wade: The Invaders have come for Earth, and Skylla Warden’s in the very center of the upheaval. On a mission to take back what is rightfully theirs, Earth’s population is determined to make sure this isn’t the end. But some endings were never theirs to begin with.
About the Author
Rachael Wade is the Amazon bestselling author of THE PRESERVATION SERIES, LOVE AND RELATIVITY, and the upcoming New Adult sci-fi series, THE KEEPERS TRILOGY. When she's not writing, she's busy going to concerts, watching too many movies, and learning how to protect animals and the environment. She's an avid Brandi Carlile fan and loves all things Tim Burton.