Welcome, Silver Dagger Tours and Author Susan Stradiotto!
by Susan Stradiotto, author of Raine of Fire
When writing fantasy, there’s a concern that magic will be seen as the proverbial dues ex machina, or the thing that suddenly happens that allows the main characters to get out of an impossible situation. A classic fantasy example is the golden eagles in the Lord of the Rings. I’ve always felt that magic in any world or story should have limitations. Therefore, when I was building the world for Raine of Fire (and what will be come the world for the series to follow), I wanted to make sure that each and every bit of magic used had its own unique drawback.
There are so many books out there where the magic user loses energy when they access magic. That’s one way to do it, but I felt like there could be some more specific consequences. When dealing with the Fae, I couldn’t assign a limitation to Faerie magic as a whole, because their magic is granted by the goddess Danu and is tied strongly to the realm of Faerie. So, I looked for other options.
One of the scenes in Raine of Fire shows the main characters Raine going on a “memory walk.” This is a fae ability where the faerie can relive a person’s memories through their eyes. There are actually a number of limitations associated with this ability.
First, the faerie must be touching the person. There is no walking by a person and getting a flash of their memories.
A second limitation is that the faerie cannot sense how the person was feeling at the time the memory occurred, only how the person feels in the present. This allows events to be viewed objectively or with almost an analytical lens. However, it also restricts the faerie from knowing immediate reactions. For example, when walking through a criminal’s memories, there might be a separation the criminal has created between themself and the crime.
Finally, there is the big consequence. When a faerie can take on physical or mental characteristics of the person they memory walk into. In Raine of Fire, the example is a hip problem, so Raine limps away from the encounter with the same affliction. This is temporary, of course, because Fae are immortal.
There is also an unwritten rule: Never memory walk with the dead. I’ll let that one sit with you for a while.
Sparks fly when an exiled Fae prince and a straight-laced detective team up to solve a murder.
Banished by his mother from Faerie, Raine Abarta wants nothing more than to entertain people on the streets of Wickney, Wisconsin. But when the daughter of a prominent senator stumbles upon his show, he’s drawn into her world and her mother’s murder.
When Raine takes his act down to the police department with intentions of helping solve the puzzle–or, uh, the “case”–he meets the ultra-serious Detective Kennedi Craine. To his dismay, she views him as nothing more than a charlatan, but when has that ever stopped him?
Kennedi’s latest case is open and shut, more of a paperwork and media hassle than a case. Senator La Point, after all, was holding the smoking gun over his wife’s lifeless body. So, when a random guy off the street walks in telling her she’s wrong, she sends him on his merry way. At least she thinks she does. As he keeps popping up, she begins to wonder if he’s on to something. And when he broaches a situation from her past, she just can’t leave him alone.
Raine helps her solve another small case, and she starts to wonder if there might be something more to both mysteries before her.
Fabulous read for fans of the TV shows Castle and Bones.
Susan Stradiotto is passionate about the written word, whether it is in her own writing or her editing practice. She is a fan of well-told stories. Susan is always searching for unique voices and stories that tell a truth. As Neil Gaiman said in his master class, “Write the truest story you can.” She believes that is what makes a story sing.
Susan is an author of fantasy and romance and has professional editorial experience with genres such as romance, memoir, mystery/thriller, cozy mystery, fantasy, and women’s fiction. She attended Capella University for her BS in Information Technology and the University of Chicago’s Graham School for her professional editing certification. She lives in Eden Prairie with her husband, a hoard of Bernese Mountain Dogs, and one Miniature Dachshund.
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