Christmas in July, unwrap a summer ebook blog blitz, welcomes Carmen Stefanescu
Anne's relationship with her boyfriend Neil has disintegrated. After a two-year separation, they pack for a week vacation in hopes of reconciling. But fate has other plans for them.
The discovery of a bejeweled cross and ancient human bones opens a door to a new and frightening world--one where the ghost of a medieval nun named Genevieve will not let Anne rest. This new world threatens not only to ruin Anne and Neil's vacation but to end all hopes of reconciliation as Anne feels compelled to help free Genevieve's soul from its torment.
Can Anne save her relationship and help Genevieve find her eternal rest?
The twists and turns in this paranormal tale keep the reader guessing up to the end and weave themselves together into a quest to rekindle love.
Fantasy Fiction the Trendy Genre?
A study at the end of the year 2012 indicates a decline in reading books: 28% of the people reply they don't like to read and 26% say they have no time to do it. Of the few who say they are fond of reading, the vast majority, say that they enjoy reading - fantasy fiction.
From Game of Thrones by G.R.R. Martin to Harry Potter by J. K. Rowling the bug of fantasy fiction has become viral. The name of J.R. R. Tolkien is more known than those of stars in show business. Hunger Games and Suzanne Collins rocketed to the sky especially after the first volume of the series was screened. There are people who say, "If you want to get rich write fantasy fiction."
There may be some truth in it if we consider J. K. Rowling is richer than the Queen of England.
We speak of a phenomenon that can't be denied and is obviously reflected in the book sales: our society favors fantasy fiction.
Why is that? In my humble opinion, fantasy fiction offers its readers something that targets a part of themselves - the child within each of them. A child who dreams that one day he'll walk through the enchanted forest, sit at the table with the fairies and perhaps find the never ending youth.
Escape from reality or "Scheherazade syndrome", call it as you like, the explanation for the success of the genre can be easily explained. This type of literature allows us to be free. It creates a world without boundaries or limitations, a world where nobody can force you to do something you don't want or like; a world in which there's no "impossible" and the good character usually wins through, if only in the long run. Imaginary worlds, magic, supernatural phenomena are fundamental elements for fantasy fiction, and make believe is the basic defining word for this most beloved genre of literature. In fantasy, we may go to a simpler time and world - the world as we wish it might be.
And yet, the advent of fantasy fiction started not with the above mentioned famous books, but way back, with The Epic of Gilgamesh, The Beowulf, Mahabharata and The One Thousand and One Nights, as myth and legend have been an important part of human culture since its beginning. Literature began with these stories which can be read at ease by a 10 -year-old as well as by an adult.
My novel Shadows of the Past, released by Wild Child Publishing on 4th December 2012, displays elements that can include it in the fantasy genre: ghosts, magic and witches. Psychic powers is added as a bonus, allowing the characters to foresee upcoming events or guess if the person in front of them is a "good" or "bad" one.
Please check out Carmen's Latest book, Shadows of the past, and enjoy this excerpt.
"Come, we should leave at once," she said and glanced nervously over her shoulder. "Something terrible happened after you left for town. I think the Abbess found out about us. Our meeting in Uncle Ryan's cabin is no longer a secret. We have been overheard. For all I know someone spies on us even as we speak. I think the Abbess, or one of her 'friends,' is hovering somewhere nearby and listening to every word."
Andrew pulled Genevieve to his chest. "Do you regret you've come with me?"
Passion smothered Genevieve's doubt and guilt. "Never," she answered, aware of her body's response to his touch, and she succumbed to his embrace.
Calming the gnawing unease in her mind and the thought of Sister Dominica guessing she was the dough of a sinner, Genevieve repeated, "Never."
With her eyes closed and their bodies touching she became, for the very first time, simply a woman. She melted in his embrace in spite of the invisible vicious threat breathing around them. Aware they might never be alone again, she fought hard to silence the voice of conscience berating her.
"Oh, God. Please forgive me," Andrew muttered under his breath when he bowed his head to kiss her. Their lips met in a passionate first kiss.
Genevieve's spirits fell and her heart skipped a beat when, a couple of seconds later, she opened her eyes and her gaze fell on a knot strangers.
… . . .
Tears welled in Anne's eyes, blurring her vision. She couldn’t explain them, or the sudden sadness seeping into her heart. This should’ve been a moment of happiness or, at least, contentment. She was with Neil again, and the outcome of their trip together should, very likely, bring their reconciliation. Why then did she seem detached from where she stood?
Anne shivered. Why the deep feeling of having seen this place, this forest before? And why the eerie sensation of being present here only in the body, while her mind was far away?
Away from the forest.
Away from Neil, the man who'd betrayed her trust and her love.
An onrush of sensations unfamiliar to her followed. Dizziness and a malevolent feeling of unreality suffocated her.
Anne edged cautiously closer to the rim of the bare cliff. Her foot tapped the edge. It seemed solid. She stared into the darkness of the abyss at her feet. It echoed the shadows in her heart. An unusual curiosity took hold of her. Should she step ahead? What was down there? Other human bones? Another mystery? The presence of evil, creeping up and enveloping her, became almost palpable. The vines of fog folded around her, dragging her to the depth. Her throat turned dry, and she gasped for air.
Megan's face contorted, the voice no longer pleasant. A hoarse gurgle, spluttering distorted words, "Yes, come... I'm waiting... I've been waiting for you for such a long time..."
Carmen Stefanescu was born in Romania, the native country of the infamous vampire Count Dracula, but where, for about 50 years of communist dictatorship, just speaking about God, faith, reincarnation or paranormal phenomena could have led someone to great trouble - the psychiatric hospital if not to prison.
Teacher of English and German in her native country and mother of two daughters, Carmen Stefanescu survived the grim years of oppression, by escaping in a parallel world, that of the books.
She has dreamed all her life to become a writer, but many of the things she wrote during those years remained just drawer projects. The fall of the Ceausescu’s regime in 1989 and the opening of the country to the world meant a new beginning for her. She started publishing. Poems first, and then prose. Both in English.
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