Valentine’s Day

Announcing the Winners of the Valentine’s Day Giveaway – Broken, Book 2 of The Avena Series

Broken, Book 2 of The Avena Series

Broken, Book 2 of The Avena Series

Running this competition has been an exciting and eye-opening experience and I thank everyone who entered. There were more entries than I had anticipated and in these last few nights I have been reading and re-reading well into the night until my eyes blurred. Some of the entries brought me to tears. Did I say “some”? An understatement, I assure you. Life is full of harsh struggles which none of us is immune to, no matter where we live, what age we are, what we do, or how limited our choices are in life. But what always impresses me is the human capacity to be positive in our darkest hours, and how the words written in a book by someone on the other side of the world can help someone through their darkness and even change their lives. But I enjoyed some laughs too, and I was equally as impressed with the creative quality of some of the entries. And to those who have become writers after being inspired by my books, thank you for letting me know. It’s a compliment of the highest degree. The fact that there were so many of you I found humbling.

That said, it was beyond hard to choose only three winners, and in the end I had to enlist help from an impartial assessor who assisted me in sorting out the finalists. But to select only three was still a very hard choice.

Congratulations to the winners: 

Jessica Stewart

Kire Moonchild

Beth Fargo

I will be contacting you shortly for mailing details. Thank you, all, and have a wonderful Valentine’s Day!

What Inspired The Avena Series

Q. What inspired you to write your new series about angels?

The Avena Series, with the titles Hidden, Broken and Fearless, began as a thought in my head many years ago and developed over a series of events that happened to me during 2004 and 2005.

In 2004 I had just finished writing The Key, the third book of The Guardians of Time Trilogy. The Key was at the copy edit stage and almost ready to send to the printer for publishing. I had started to think ahead to what I would write next and one thing I knew was that it would be about an angel. Then I became ill. I was feeling run down and becoming short of breath. But I was a mother of three teenagers and didn’t think much of this until I found it difficult to climb the stairs at the front of my house.

It wasn’t long after seeing my doctor that I was diagnosed with aggressive Myeliofibrosis (bone marrow cancer). My body was not making blood anymore and what blood I had in my system was turning into scar tissue and enlarging my liver and spleen. I found out later that I had only a few weeks to live, but a stem-cell bone marrow transplant using my sister’s cells saved my life.

I spent twenty weeks in hospital in an isolation ward where I endured some very dark and seemingly endless days and nights. A few weeks into my recovery from the transplant I suffered a setback in the form of a fall, and because the chemotherapy had weakened my bone structure, I fractured five vertebrae in my low back and over the course of the next few months, my spine (and my height) crushed down by seven inches. I had a lot to deal with and my pain medication had the side effect of making me drowsy.

But when I returned home I felt that I had been given a second chance at life, and my experience in the hospital had me thinking about the wonderful people, the doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, pain specialists, and all my family and friends, my fans who wrote to me, and people I had never met wishing me well, and everyone who had been praying for me. They seemed like angels, and indeed to me they were.

My illness was the catalyst for writing The Avena Series. I took my thought of a story about an angel, gave it the theme of second chances, and developed my plan for three books. It took time to write due to the adjustments I had to make, the follow-up treatments, and my determination to build up my concentration levels again.

I am proud of my new series, and grateful to Bloomsbury Publishing for their wonderful support and belief in me. The Avena Series tells the story of an angel named Ebrielle who was abducted at birth, stripped of her name, hidden in a secluded valley on Earth, and raised to believe she is an average girl. But in her heart she knows she is different. How different puts her on a course of discovery, catapulted into action when she meets a troubled boy named Jordan. Their bond alerts the heavens, specifically her eternal soul-mate Nathaneal, a prince in the world of angels who has never given up searching for her, and unfortunately also the dark angel Lucien, whose obsession for Ebrielle brings the young loves and all the worlds of Earth to the brink of devastation.

Fearless Book 3 of The Avena Series

Fearless Book 3 of The Avena Series

Hidden, Book 1 of The Avena Series   Broken, Book 2 of The Avena Series