After so much hard work, beta reading suggestions, editing, rewrites, and editing help from the fabulously talented Heena Rathmore Pardeshi, Golden Healer, the 2nd book in The Curse of Time series is finally on its way. Heena gets top billing on my acknowledgement page as do all my fabulous beta readers and author friends in the community! Thank you all. And special thanks to Colleen Chesebro who set me on my way with book one: Bloodstone, there wouldn’t be a book 2 without her amazing help.
Golden Healer is The 2nd in The YA Paranormal Adventure Series – The Curse of Time.
I didn’t think my life could get any weirder, until the dreaded rollercoaster…
Amelina Scott’s destiny is to be a Krystallos: a magician of light, chosen to learn the ways of crystal magic on her 16th birthday. Located on a river pathway in a mysterious part of Cambridge, the Crystal Cottage is guarded by mythical beings.
Unfortunately, there are those who seek to harm this haven of light. Learning of Ryder – a Shadow Sorcerer with hypnotic powers – Amelina discovers that her own magic is now threatened, and that the Curse of Time might be unleashed again.
As secrets abound and the creatures of the Chronophage come alive, can Amelina become the true magician she needs to be?
A unique, imaginative mystery full of magic-wielding and dark elements, Bloodstone is a riveting adventure for anyone interested in fantasy, mythology or the world of the paranormal. NOTE: this book contains mention of self-harm, mental health issues and alludes to the potential dangers of sexual attraction, which may trigger younger/sensitive readers.
Dedicated to the one and only rollercoaster that I ever rode. It was in Portugal, and I was on holiday with my young family. I’ll never forget that day, I overcame my fears and rode a rollercoaster with the encouragement of my much-loved family, my husband, David, and daughters Natasha and Georgina. So, it’s time to ride another rollercoaster… I hope you will come along with me for this crazy ride! Let’s meet our fears together…
And a snippet:
Worms, caviar too,
Two unlikely friends share tea,
And Chit – ter—Chat – ter,
That Chiastolite, oh my!
And Amelina’s bloodstone.
Come with me… Through a gated door leading to a quaint herb and rose garden where two strange companions, Leanne and Eruterac, share a rare moment together.
Today, they marvelled at the beauty and fragility of the rose petals that created a dazzling display of white, yellow, pink and darkest crimson blooms. The delightful fragrance of roses and herbs filled the air, bursting with sweetness. In the background, a quaint old cottage with shuttered windows rested as if waiting for a passing stranger to dare to cross its threshold. Within, sunbeams alighted on all manner of crystals as they twinkled, longing for a release from their embedded position on the walls. The ground around the cottage stirred, breaking and settling as if threatening to draw the cottage back into its hiding place, the earth.
In the surrounding courtyard, there were cages and bird feeders hanging from the trees. White doves cooed and preened themselves in bird baths.
The creature Eruterac paid no attention to the antics of these exquisite birds. Instead, he fidgeted as he tried to rearrange his tall skeletal frame into Leanne’s dainty, wrought-iron chairs.
Leanne sat opposite him. Except for the tulle layers of her silken gown, her tiny frame appeared lost in the chair. She tilted her head with an air of grandeur, as if she were about to join a garden party frequented by the finest royalty, or perhaps by the gods themselves.
Eruterac had no such attire, except for his knitted Rasta cap with sun-cured palm leaves that covered his matted dreadlocks, infested with rotting insects and decaying skin and held together by lumps of graveyard earth.
His needs were a thing of the past, now his only concern were the worms that crawled across his bony frame. He held one such wriggling creature inches from the gap where his mouth used to be and edged forward, dangling it in front of Leanne’s nose.
“Dinner,” he joked as he bobbed his skeletal head.
Leanne shuddered. “No worms, thanks, dearest creature. Caviar for me!” She picked up her finest china teapot and poured the liquid into a cup. It flowed slowly, twinkling with myriad brilliant colours. When it filled the cup, it turned the colour Leanne expected. She’d thought of green tea and magical green tea it was.
Eruterac choked and spluttered on clods of earth as he laughed. “That’s foul. Green tea, how can you drink such muck?”
“Easy. I do so with a smile, unlike… poor you! I see worms oozing gunk where your dear mouth used to be,” replied Leanne, reaching forward to pat Eruterac on his skeletal shoulder.
They rested for a moment, her gentle hand on his bones.
“I’ll try not to drink such delicacies!” replied Eruterac, cracking his bones for a joke.
“Wise fellow. Forgive me for changing the subject, but your new hat is very fetching! It’s so brown and earthy with that Chiastolite death crystal and the black cross embellishing the cap’s centre.”
“Indeed, it’s a dark beauty, like an honourable death,” he said. His skeletal arm reached up to touch the crystal on his hat.
“Take heart, dear creature, forget death, and being bound to this cottage. Let us rejoice in the simple pleasures of life, which we take for granted…” Leanne pointed at their sublime surroundings.
Eruterac sighed. “Yes, there are times amid such tranquillity and beauty that I forget everything.”
A white dove landed on Leanne’s slender shoulder. She turned and smiled. But the dove thought better of it and alighted on the creature’s hat. It pecked away at the worms, making the creature smile.
“Cheeky doves, always favouring Eruterac’s sunny hat.”
“They know who provides them with a constant dinner of worms. And who’s boss.”
“Huh! A boss? You? That Chiastolite’s making you big-headed. Oh, my days! The protectors, you, and my dearest doves are all that I and my dear cottage need… But I mustn’t forget, I have news to impart – the Midsummer Fly is up to his tricks.”
“Where’s that stinking fly been to this time?” asked Eruterac, leaning forward, sending worms tumbling towards Leanne’s teacup.
Her eyes grew wide as she placed a protective hand over the top, but a few swift worms landed in the saucer. She swiped them away.
“Oh, anguish me. Worms in my saucer! How my flesh crawls. Ugh. I feel giddy.” Leanne placed her tiny hand on her forehead. Her multihued grey hair twirled like an ebullient rainbow in a cloudy sky.
“Leanne, forget the worms. You were talking about the Midsummer Fly?”
“Yes. The fly has been to Amelina’s. He flew in her open bedroom window, sampled her Krystallos blood but, other than that, my crystal ball refuses to grant me a vision. I placed my trust in Amelina, and I fear I was hasty.” Leanne sighed and her hands fell to her lap as her shoulders slumped.
“This gurgling, sensation in my gut tells me that a shadow demon threatens the cottage’s safety. I believe that the grasshopper and the fly are in cahoots. Either way, I could suggest this or that, but it would all be for nought. Amelina’s young and in time she will learn to value the magical gifts you’ve entrusted her with.”
He lifted his hat and a family of rats, which had been resting on his dreadlocks, ran free, knocking over Leanne’s teacup.
“Ugh. I wish you wouldn’t do that, Eruterac,” said Leanne, wagging her finger at him. “You pretend to honour me, but the last time you did that, you broke my precious china teacup!”
“How could you accuse me of such a thing, Leanne?” Eruterac’s eye sockets winked, crunching together, making a horrendous grinding sound.
“Stop that! You have no eyeballs – you devil! The rats devoured your eyes long ago. Enough.”
She paused for a moment before announcing, “The Bloodstone will find a way.”
“Of Krystallos blood and Amelina, I am certain,” replied Eruterac, bowing.
Looking forward to the book launch which should start in the next few days… Thanks to all those who have offered to help. If anyone else would like to join the launch party do let me know. Looking for ARC reviewers, social media gurus, blog sharers, lol. The more the merrier! This is a big celebration, I’m so happy I finally finished this. It’s been a huge challenge. Phew, wipes sweat off brow…
The First book in the series has received many fantastic reviews and a book award recently from Amazon influencer N. N. Light, receiving a review rating of 5+ stars. Yes, she loved it a lot!
Here is her review:
A magical invitation, that doesn’t tear up, urges Amelina to go to Crystal Cottage to seek out the hidden secrets of her family. Amelina Scott knows her family isn’t what you call normal and neither is her house. No one she knows has a girl trapped in the mirrors. When she receives an invitation to visit Crystal Cottage, she doesn’t know what to make of it. Is it a prank? Is it a trick? She decides to ignore it and throws it in the trash. Only it doesn’t stay in the bin. She tries to cut it up but it doesn’t cut. It sings, it dances, it is somehow alive. She finally decides to travel to the Crystal Cottage to see what happens. Along the way, she meets Ryder and discovers magic (both light and dark) is all around. She interacts with magical people, beings, and objects while learning the truth of her family. What happens next will astound you, the reader. Are you ready for an adventure?
Bloodstone is an imaginative fantasy adventure I enjoyed from start to finish. From the first page, I connected with Amelina. She’s a delightful heroine. I could relate to her on so many levels. Everything from her curiosity to her reactions to her emotional state rang true. While it’s tricky these days to write an original fantasy story, M.J. Mallon wrote one of the most original fantasy books I’ve read in a long time. Taking bits from fantasy authors of the past, M.J. Mallon adds her own blend of magical realism and emotional coming of age to make Bloodstone a gem. The plot moves at a good pace with each chapter starting with a puzzle. What a creative way to keep the reader invested. The world-building is intricate and riveting. The characters are engaging and easy to connect with. Overall, Bloodstone is a brilliant story and when I finished, I wanted to read it all over again. If you’re a fantasy reader, you need to read Bloodstone. Highly recommend!
Disclaimer: I received a copy from the author in the hopes I’d review it. My thoughts are all my own.
Her Rating: 5+ stars
She also awarded me finalist in her annual International author awards too.
I think things are on the up and up. Well, I hope so…
I hope you think so too and will give Bloodstone and Golden Healer a try. Especially, if you like stories that are different, that touch upon many pertinent family topics: such as mental health, vulnerability, growing up, aging, and learning who to trust in a refreshing and imaginative way.
There is something for everyone in this magical series whether you are old or young! I love it. And one thing I’ve learnt in this journey is you have to love your work. Which I do. <3
Do come join me – time to celebrate! Launch soon!
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