Seventeen-year-old-Violet’s life is shrouded in secrets. She knows nothing of the world beyond the isolated wood she shares with her overprotective Grandmother. She doesn’t even know her grandmother’s real name. She doesn’t know what happened to her parents, or even their names. She doesn’t know her own last name, or why she can see things no one else can. Violet longs to know the answers about herself, but she encounters only more questions when she is summoned to the royal court by the imperious Countess Is’aura. Is’aura claims to have been a friend of Violet’s mother, merely fulfilling a promise to offer Violet the life of a noble and to train her budding magical abilities. Yet Isaura’s motives may be more sinister. Violet sees firsthand that rebellion is growing in the country of Gaerdon as the Countess spends more time away from court, practicing dark magic in the wild forests, while the nearby kingdom of Neventhrall applies ever more pressure to the citizens of Gaerdon, spreading anti-magic propaganda and seeking excuses for war.
Escorting Violet to court is Raven, son of the former Count who was deposed and disgraced by the Countess eight years ago. Raven warns Violet that the Countess’ true intention is to teach Violet magic for the purpose of enhancing her own power. But Violet isn’t about to be used, and she isn’t about to accept the Countess’ brutality. Her journey to court taught her too much. She’s seen the world outside the walls of Gaerdon House, the sprawling manor which becomes her new home; she’s seen the starving children, the desperate outlaws, the people oppressed by the Countess’ rule, and she vows to help them, no matter the cost. Raven is with her, but when he is made to choose between remaining with Violet at Gaerdon House and doing the right thing for the people of Gaerdon, Violet is left alone and decimated. The Countess forces her to wield ancient magic through an elaborate tapestry, woven from Violet’s own memories, abilities and will. Finding the truth about herself may cost Violet everything she is.
Featuring a kick-ass heroine of a different, stubbornly kindhearted sort, Rose Shadow is an 82,301 word YA Fantasy novel with wide crossover appeal, which follows Violet’s struggle to find the truth and stand up for her beliefs in a world of secrets, lies and magic.
– That’s the (every-changing) query letter for my novel. The title Rose Shadow comes from a complex magic possessed by white roses that grow in a hidden garden at Gaerdon House. The roses cast a white shadow that illuminates the dense, magical forests that surround the kingdom, affording the one who holds the rose some protection from the overwhelming magic.
I’ve been working on this series for many years and am currently in the polish-and-query stage.
The image is the gorgeous cover I commissioned from artist Tsyplakova Alla.