The trouble with trilogies
People have issues with trilogies. What if they don’t have the first book – will it make sense? What if they start, and fall in love with the story, but for some reason the author doesn’t finish it? What if they get the first book straight away, love it, but then they have to wait for months (even years) for the next book?
Well, my publisher HarperCollins has solved all those fears for people interested in the Dream of Asarlai trilogy by publishing all three books in the one volume! It’s called an omnibus. If it was a print version, it would be huge! Luckily, it’s electronic so you don’t have to worry about hurting your hands trying to hold it.
Nearly 350,000 words, broken into three action packed fantasy romances – Secret Ones, Power Unbound and Rogue Gadda. All for less than $10!
So jump online at your favourite bookstore and download it. Better yet, answer the question below and go into the draw to win a copy (sorry Kindle readers – this is for Apple or general ePub readers only).
Excerpt from Secret Ones, book one of the trilogy.
A huge beast towered over her grandfather. Maggie recognised it as a fuiparra, a medium-level beast that was even stronger than its size warranted. It was seven feet tall, slender and whiplike, with a pointed chin, nose and teeth. Its skin was grey with an oily sheen, and pulled tight over the long muscles in its thighs and arms. A sour smell of over-boiled cabbage wafted from the room. As she watched, a thin extension of an arm flicked out, lashing her grandfather and, thanks to the burst of power behind it, sending him flying across the room, crashing into a bookcase. Heavy texts cascaded down on the crumpled old man.
She stepped into the office, lifted her hands and sent a bolt of power, an energetic dark pink, toward the creature. The power hit the fuiparra and sent it sideways, crashing into the wall. The creature saw her and screamed, the sound almost splitting her eardrums, before moving toward her.
She sent another bolt, this time trying to hold the creature. For a moment, it halted. She took advantage of the reprieve to look at her grandfather. He wasn’t moving. Blood dripped down from a wound in the side of his face and his arm wasn’t straight where it should have been.
How could that have happened? He was sixth order; taking care of a fuiparra, while challenging, shouldn’t have been a major problem. Had the creature surprised him and managed to injure him before he was ready to fight back?
Her concentration wavered, and the fuiparra pushed through her hold and continued toward her.
She gulped. As a second level gadda, she didn’t have the skills to fight a beast this powerful. She prepared to send power out to hold it again, but the fuiparra lifted one arm and swung at her. She flew through the air, back out the door and crashed into the wall on the other side of the hall before hitting the floor.
Pain rocked through her and she quickly sent her power through her body, healing the minor bruises and nerve damage the fall had caused. For a moment, she was dazed and then she shook her head and moved. She stood and moved over to the door and then stopped in shock. Lucas was taking on the beast, wielding a lamp in one hand and one of her grandfather’s awards in the other. He stabbed at the creature with one hand, slashed with another, moving gracefully around his opponent. The fuiparra seemed unsure how to handle this unique form of attack and rather than whipping at Lucas was trying to push him away.
Maggie stepped forward, gathered her power into the strongest hold she could muster and fired it at the fuiparra. The beast screamed, but she held it.
‘Check Grandpa,’ she yelled at Lucas, then mentally called for her mother. Lucas didn’t listen and used the hold Maggie had to attack the beast frenetically. The fuiparra screamed and pushed against Maggie’s power and she could feel the edges fraying.
‘Leave it alone, Lucas,’ she shouted. ‘I can’t hold it while you’re upsetting it.’
Then a stream of pale lavender power flashed past her shoulder and struck the fuiparra, pushing it back and pinning it against the wall. ‘Get out of the way, Lucas,’ Siobhan shouted as she came to stand next to Maggie.
Maggie was miffed that he instantly obeyed her mother. Siobhan pulled back one hand, gave it a whirl and then sent a beating pulse of power at the creature. The fuiparra roared and pushed away from the wall, breaking through the hold and staggering toward the two women.
‘Shit,’ Siobhan said before reinforcing the hold and pushing the fuiparra back against the wall. ‘That should have worked.’
Maggie quickly looked over at her grandfather. He hadn’t moved, hadn’t regained consciousness. Her mind battled with the concept that her grandfather had failed. She shook her head to focus on the situation at hand. ‘What do we do now?’
The fuiparra struggled and started to move slowly from the wall, slowly against their power, slowly breaking through. They had only seconds.
‘Lucas,’ her mother shouted. ‘The head, that’s where it’s most vulnerable.’
Lucas nodded, dropped the lamp, held the award in two hands and lifted it high above his own head. Then he brought it crashing down upon the fuiparra.
The creature stilled and Maggie swore an expression of astonishment flickered over its features. Then it collapsed onto the floor.
Lucas knelt down next to it, grabbing the lamp as he did so. ‘Check on John,’ he said as he began to use the lamp’s cord to tie up the fuiparra.
Maggie and Siobhan pulled back their power. Siobhan turned, gasped and rushed over to her father. Maggie stood in the middle of the trashed office, panting, unable to think. Lucas stood and walked over to her. He put his hands on her shoulders and gave her a gentle shake. She focussed what little attention she could muster on him.
‘Are you OK? That was quite a flight you took out into the hall,’ he said.
Maggie blinked and then she smiled. ‘I’m fine. And I guess you have more pressing questions.’
Lucas released her and took a step back. He narrowed his eyes. ‘I must be going mad. I thought I saw you using magic.’
Answer this question in the comments for the opportunity to win a copy of the Dream of Asarlai trilogy: what is the name of the three books that make up the trilogy? Winner will be chosen at random.
Nicole Murphy is a writer, editor and teacher from getting quite wintery Canberra. The Dream of Asarlai trilogy was first published in print and electronic form in 2010/2011 and released as an omnibus in April 2014. She has published more than two dozen speculative fiction short stories. As Elizabeth Dunk, she had published two contemporary romances with Escape Publishing and in June, will publish ‘Release’, a collection of paranormal erotica.