(It’s time for another special feature – an author shares about the monsters, misfits, and mushy stuff in their book! This time, the author is Sarah Delena White and the book is Halayda))
Venture in Faerie, and you’ll meet a lot of scary creatures. From banshee assassins, to faerie hounds who hunt their prey until the prey drops dead, to shadow-fae who can pull people down to the underworld with a wave of their hand, it’s not a world for the faint of heart.
But what makes someone a monster? In Halayda, it’s not always what you’d expect. Some of the characters wield terrifying abilities that only seem useful for evil purposes. Some characters were dealt a difficult hand in life and sacrificed their humanity in order to survive. But the true monsters are the ones that hide in plain sight, concealing their true evil nature beneath a beautiful veneer.
Sylvie, the protagonist of Halayda, has never fit in anywhere. Half human and half fae, she was rejected by both societies and grew up as a black market trader in the slums of Sabellyn. Her mixed heritage has been a continual source of danger and loneliness. But instead of letting that define her life, she has made it her mission to provide a safe place for others in the same situation.
Sylvie is a magnet for outcasts. She shares her house with seventeen half-fae orphans. Her closest friends are a black market trader and an interdimensional traveler who are both running from their pasts. Even King Taylan is a misfit, hated by his own kingdom for his dark powers and unconventional choices. But when the misfits choose to stand together, the world will never be the same.
No spoilers here, but mushy stuff is kind of important in Halayda, especially when the odds are against it. A faerie king and a mortal alchemist who can only see each other four times a year? A shifter husband and his magician wife who spent a century in separate dimensions, only meeting in dreams? The romance in Halayda isn’t just about emotions. It’s about sacrifice and hard decisions. It’s about learning what is truly important and becoming the person you were meant to be, no matter how painful that is. Happy endings don’t come easy for anyone, but they’re worth fighting for.
Sarah Delena White was raised by wolves in an alternate dimension. She writes eclectic speculative fiction that reworks mythology with a fine balance of poetry and snark. She’s an experienced world traveler who loves to weave world folklore and ancient concepts into vibrant, original story worlds. She is also the Benevolent Firebird (acquisitions editor) for Uncommon Universes Press. When she’s not writing or editing, she can be found making jewelry, singing Irish ballads, drinking tea, and working a variety of odd jobs. She can be bribed with dark chocolate. Find her on SarahDelenaWhite.com, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram.
A mortal alchemist. A faerie king. A bond that transcends death.
Betrayed by a trusted mentor, Sylvie Imanthiya hides on the fringes of society, caring for half-fae orphans and trading her alchemical creations on the black market. She lives for the one night each season when she can see her dearest friend—a man whose destiny is far above hers.
King Taylan Ashkalabek knows better than to exchange halayda vows with a mortal. Even their friendship is a risk; love is an impossible dream. Then a brutal alchemical attack poisons his realm, unearthing a dark power within him—and leaving Sylvie with the ancient mark of Faerie’s savior.
Manifesting unpredictable abilities and aided by allies with their own secrets, Sylvie and Taylan journey into the wilds of Faerie to heal the damage and confront Casimir, an invincible star-fae determined to claim the realm as his own. But only their enemy knows Sylvie’s true capabilities—and Taylan’s weaknesses—and how to use them in his vicious schemes.
Her fate is life. His fate is death. With Faerie in the balance, Sylvie and Taylan must stand together before reality as they know it is destroyed.