17 Sep

Sometimes a story gets into your head and refuses to leave.

I can usually perform a minor exorcism in the form of a short story. I’ve got a bunch of these furious little demons sitting on my desktop, or making the submission rounds to genre magazines. Stoneskin was supposed to be one of these short stories, a one-and-done. It’s…uh.

Well. Life happened. Stoneskin comes out this week.


Three thousand years from now, galactic transportation relies on the sentient energy field known as the Deep. Its immortal human emissaries call themselves Witches, and they control how the Deep is used. When eight-year-old Tembi Moon wakes on an unfamiliar world, she knows the Deep has to be involved, but to leave her home planet and become a Witch herself? No, that life isn’t for her.

Or so she thought.

At sixteen, Tembi takes her rightful place with the other Witches. They believe the Deep is a tool; Tembi knows it’s a person with its own hopes and dreams, and a wicked sense of humor! With a war coming that could cost the lives of millions, Tembi has to find a way to convince the Witches that the Deep wants them to join the fight.

Because something worse than war is coming, and the Deep needs its Witches to be ready.

STONESKIN is a prequel to the DEEP WITCH TRILOGY, coming soon.

I like Tembi Moon a lot. She’s not my usual kind of broken character. It’s nice to spend time in the head of someone who–with one very violent exception!–is a generally healthy person.

In contrast to Tembi, the universe itself is pretty freakin’ broken. The majority of the hundreds of human-occupied planets are thoroughly encased in the norms of what they think of as “Earth” culture; many of the residents resent this, as well as the institutions responsible for preserving it. In Stoneskin, Tembi’s a little too young to fully appreciate what’s happening, and she’s got a few problems of her own to manage. In the sequels? Tembi’s in control of the primary galactic supply chain. She knows what’s going on, and she’s older, wiser, and angry!

The full text is available on Thursday, Sept 21, 2017. You can read the first three chapters for free by downloading them at Gumroad.

(I’ll update this list as the links go live)

As always, please purchase from the store which best suits your needs and reading preferences, not mine! If you want Tembi to get her sequels, please leave an honest review, and tell other readers about Stoneskin.

I hope you enjoy this book!

5 Responses to “Stoneskin”

  1. Stephen Ray September 17, 2017 at 3:10 pm #

    Great to see this. I’ve loved everything else of yours that I’ve read. I’m looking forward to reading something outside the AGAHF universe.

  2. Charles Knox September 18, 2017 at 1:04 pm #

    Pre-oirdered!! I can’t wait to read it. A new series too!

  3. Azqa September 18, 2017 at 3:21 pm #

    Fantastic! Enjoyed the sample chapters, and am looking forward to the book!

    I got a bit of a Tiffany Aching vibe from the sample, which has me tremendously excited to read more of the story.

  4. Jules September 21, 2017 at 10:48 am #

    I loved the preview chapters, full version on order! 😀

    • Paula September 22, 2017 at 2:04 am #

      Just finished it. Great world!

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