Cover Reveal – Alathea: Goddess & Empress

Main cover - "Alathea: Goddess & Empress"

Cover art: Rona Dijkhuis ( https://squareonecomics.com )

Base pose provided with permission by @manicmoth ( https://manicmoth.contactin.bio )

“She despised her father’s world. Why couldn’t sorcery be true? Would that world not be better?”

Alathea was raised to rule, but the benevolent and deranged forces that hope to prepare her for the throne may create a monster. She’s torn between her father’s reign of empty order through terror and violence, and a magical path that could be completely illusory. She can’t live one exclusive of the other, so she lives both.

Her father is bent on protecting his daughter from the same fanatics who killed her mother, but far too often his desire for revenge takes him away from her. His yearning to raise a strong and steadfast heir compromises what little time they do spend together.

Her tutor intends to help her be better than her father, more sensible and knowledgeable, in control of her own story and the narrative of the empire just as her mother had been. But he isn’t raising her alone and can’t predict how his teachings will be used.

Her nurse subtly coaxes her toward a path of faith and enlightenment according to the nurse’s secret masters, believing that Alathea can be saved and in turn save the empire. But the Seers have grim plans that they would never reveal to their minion.

This tragic story touches on loss, the insatiable hunger for control, the way people live stories and narratives, the innocence and danger of dreams, the follies of love, the deep hatred and rage dwelling within people, and the dangers of using conquest to strive for peace.

Embattled by all the forces hoping to shape her to their whim, Alathea takes a piece of everything they give her and becomes something never before seen in the land. Goddess. Empress. Monster.

Cover Reveal and Ebook Release

The Mad Queen Alathea holds her mask aloft on this trilogy-completing cover by Rona Dijkhuis.

I’ve decided to address a couple different things in one post.

Yes, that’s the third book’s cover

Since “Featured Image” is a thing on this WordPress blog, let’s go with that first. Some of you noticed, and one spoke up (hello, Maria!), about the third cover shown on my Teaser Banner Image. Yes, that’s an actual third book cover. Yes, there is an actual third book in the works.

To be quite honest, the first book had been in the works since 2008; the second, since 2010; this one, 2011. I mean something more substantial by “in the works”, such as “this project is definitely going ahead in some form”. And I can now say that instead of only having a first draft, some meaningful thought is being put into the revision process. Once this second book is good and launched, I will have nothing else to do but finish the writing I started in November 2016, and then finish the third book, in whichever order happens to work.

Alathea is depicted here as the titular Mad Queen, wearing some of her symbolic talismans of power and holding aloft her mask. A bit of the fortress details are visible, where we see some stone work but some suggestion of utilizing natural rock formations. People who read the sequel may have some idea what goes on the other end of that rope. If you’ve looked at each cover, you’ve noticed that Derek got bright colours and a clear sky, a little too fantastic perhaps to reflect what’s real but a better reflection of his mindset at some point; Chandra got cooler colours and a slightly cloudier sky; Alathea gets rough seas in the distance and signs of an impending storm. All by design.

The ebook is out

Yes, the ebook is out. Not just “pre-orders” out, but out-out.

Follow this link to the ebook’s page, for the time being an Amazon exclusive.