The Night’s Chosen
(The Cursed Queens Series, #1)
Published by: City Owl Press
Publication date: October 6th 2020
Genres: Adult, Fairy Tales, Retelling, Romance
Chosen of the Moon Goddess. Destined to rule. Fated to marry.
A quest to save her family, kingdom, and heart.
For the past five years Princess Eira has run from her impending wedding. As much as she loves her goddess and kingdom, she’s searched the kingdoms for another way to rule as queen someday while also choosing her own husband.
Yet, Eira’s claim to the crown falls into jeopardy when her father, King Brennus, is poisoned and fated to a sleep of living death and Eira is next on the assassin’s hit list – who happens to be her stepmother, Queen Amelia.
After Eira escapes Queen Amelia’s clutches she journeys to the northern Paravian mountains in search of an enchanted cup to save her father.
Her quest is more than she anticipated with evading Queen Amelia’s guards, traveling with the one man she shouldn’t be with, and having to bargain with the ancient dragon guarding the enchanted cup.
She’ll have to decide how to save her family and kingdom, even if it means sacrificing her heart and all she’s wanted her whole life.
If you like Sarah J Maas, Jennifer Estep, and Maxym Martineau, then you’ll love this adult fantastical retelling of the classic Snow White fairy tale.
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Eira never dreaded sunset. Or the Moon Festival. Or returning home. Or seeing the Oxarian royal family. She had always looked forward to those things. But not today. If only she could stop time.
No, not stop time, exactly. If she stopped time, Eira would never become queen.
She’d spent her life, all twenty-odd years of it, preparing to reign. She wanted to stop the wedding, something she should have been as prepared for as ruling Cresin.
Eira twirled the betrothal band around her wrist. The wedding was going to happen, regardless of what she wanted. With a deep exhale, she closed her eyes and sang, hoping to ease the storm brewing inside and instead focus on the peaceful magic bestowed on her by Luana’s priestesses.
The song ignited the crescent moon tattoo on her chest, and as it glowed, stars formed and sparkled around her head. Swirls of darkness poured out of her fingers and mingled with the betrothal band. The tune and words were meant to sooth and calm the soul, make the singer become one with Luana and be as peaceful as the night sky. Yet it did little to ease the darkness, ice, and stars warring underneath Eira’s skin.
Luana grant me peace…grant me grace…
The wedding was this week. Tonight, she and Alvis were going to perform the opening ceremony for the Moon Festival, ushering in Luana’s season, where the nights became longer than the day. This year, it would also signify the start of the wedding celebrations. As the Chosens of Luana and Ray, it was believed pieces of the souls of the god and goddess resided inside both she and Alvis, making them the closest to the deities their people would ever have. The two had been betrothed her entire life. Yet now the week arrived and she still wasn’t ready.
A knock came at the door, breaking Eira’s trance. With a wave of her arms, the stars and darkness vanished, and her tattoo faded. Taking a deep breath, she closed her robe and moved to the door, where the knocking was becoming incessant.
“Eira! Will you quit all your praying and let me in?” Rose’s voice drifted from the other side of the door.
Her younger sister almost clubbed Eira in the eye with the velvet box she held as Eira pulled the door open.
“I’d imagine after a year of visiting temples, you’d have had enough of praying by now.” Rose barreled into the room, leaning on her crutch, and dropped the box on the vanity with a thud.
“It was more necessary than usual today.” Eira shut the door behind them and exhaled, pressing her lips together before placing her hands on her hips. “And maybe if I hadn’t received dozens of letters from you and Father begging me to come home from those temples, I wouldn’t need to pray so long this morning.”
Rose waved Eira off. “It wasn’t as though you hadn’t planned on being home in time for the Moon Festival. We were simply reminding you.”
She dropped her crutch and it clattered to the ground as she flopped onto the plush, deep blue bed, pale freckled arms outstretched. Her copper hair splayed out on the quilt like fiery waves.
Eira had only been home for a few days since her yearlong pilgrimage, and had a curious new fascination with Rose. In so many ways she was the same, but in spite of sending letters all year and seeing one another for the holy days, there was still something different Eira couldn’t put her finger on. Rose had always been as fiery as her red hair and ready to speak her mind at any given chance. She never sat still for more than a moment. Yet now there was an air of unease and distance about her Eira didn’t recognize. This was one of the reasons she was glad to be home, in spite of everything. She wanted to get to know her sister again.
“And it wasn’t dozens of letters,” Rose replied. “It’s been a difficult year.”
Eira crossed the room and sat on the bed next to Rose.
“I’m aware. It’s not as though I was only sitting in temples praying the whole time. I went and visited as many of the villages that needed help as I could. They’re recovering from the fires, but it’s going to take a long time.”
“I’m not only talking about the fire recovery.” Rose propped herself on her elbows. “People have been…talking.”
Eira shifted in her seat. “People talk often Rose, whether I’m here or not.”
Emily is an author of fantasy novels who has had a life long love affair with stories and the written word. Her debut novel, The Night’s Chosen, a retelling of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, will be published with City Owl Press October 6, 2020.
She’s a Chicago South-Sider, aunt to the best niece ever, expert at the fan-girl flail, a wheelchair “part-timer” with Osteogenesis Imperfecta, dog mom, Hufflepuff, coffee addict, and has a degree in youth and theatre ministry.
When not devouring or creating books, you can find Emily watching Gilmore Girls (for the 20th time), belting out showtunes, attending the latest con, brainstorming how she can go to Disney World (again), or figuring out how to make the perfect combination of chocolate and nachos.
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