QSFer Wendy Rathbone has a new MM fantasy book out:
In The Moonling Prince: Book One, the empath Tahir is called upon to heal Prince Arulu of the Realm of the September Stars. His mission is successful and he stays on at the King’s Court as the official Palace Healer. Meanwhile, Tahir and Arulu begin to fall in love but it is no easy road as Arulu battles grief, PTSD, his twin brother’s ghost, and other problems resulting from his tragic past.
The Moonling Prince: Book Two takes the reader on a deep and intimate journey into the private relationship of Ari and Tahir as they continue to get to know each other.
During the weeks-long celebration of the holiday called The Coming of the Light, Ari faces long days in his father’s court surrounded by politics and begins to question his destiny as future king of the Realm.
Tahir must battle his own feelings of alienation and loneliness in a realm and culture he was not raised in, as well as bigotry and threats from visiting delegates of the court.
Meanwhile, the king is planning a momentous change for the entire conglomerate of moons.
Can Ari and Tahir’s new bond survive a meddling king and father, threats to Tahir’s life, and Ari’s own hidden darkness? Can love conquer grief as well as cultural rifts? All leads to an explosive conclusion on a moon called Firgone in a realm known as the September Stars.
Book Two of The Moonling Prince Series
Wendy is giving away three copies of “The Moonling Prince”, the first book in the series, in pdf format. For a chance to win, comment on this post below.
Much later in the night, when we were in bed, Ari said, “You seem distracted.” He kissed the edge of my jaw, a feathery, dry touch. A sweetness in the gesture that warmed my eyes.
A blue sheet covered my groin and part of my hip. Ari lay on his side, his upper body leaning over me, stark naked. His breath smelled of wine, and a little of the sugared cookies we’d had after dinner. His body gave off a fresh, slightly salty fragrance that always made my blood rush in my veins.
Here I was, with the most beautiful of lovers, and I stupidly kept thinking of those three delegates. The foremost thought I couldn’t rid myself of: You are not wanted here.
I had prepared for disapproval. Rejection. Mistrust. But this, after weeks of feeling like I was fitting in better every day, threw me right out of my complacency.
Ari said softly, “Tahir?”
I smiled up at him, my breath catching. “It’s nothing. Just feeling a little homesick tonight. No reason.”
His mouth was down-turned, his eyes shadowed and deep. He ran his free hand through my short, white hair, over the side of my face, slowing to caress my cheek. The warmth of that hand slid down to my neck, petting, then to my chest.
He said, “I’ve wondered that you might like to see your home again.”
“Really? You’ve wondered that?”
“Of course.” Then his face broke open with the biggest smile I’d ever seen on him. “We have the best starships in the galaxy, you know. Its not like it’s out of reach.”
But the barrier-net was in place. People didn’t just come and go in and out of the Realm as they pleased.
My eyes heated. “I know.” But what I hadn’t known was that he had thought of my feelings in that vein. Ari was socially backward in a few ways, still flighty with sudden and fleeting emotions. He gave me himself, yes, and he was educated, but he didn’t regularly give voice to long thoughts, and spoke poetically only in bed. He listened to me when I talked. His comments, though, were often one syllable.
Now he surprised me when he asked, “Does this have anything to do with that word you asked me about at dinner?”
I didn’t want to lie, so I said nothing.
He leaned in and rested his head next to mine on the pillow, facing my cheek. “It seems like it would be hard, leaving everything you’ve ever known,” he said. “But you always seem fine, very sure of yourself. It’s hard to think you might—“ He stopped speaking, hand still rubbing circles on my chest.
“Might what? Have feelings?” I asked.
He pushed himself closer, chin against my neck, and said into my ear, “That’s not what I meant.”
I said nothing.
He added, “You’re a hero here. My father gave you a title. Palace Healer. You’re amazing. Really amazing.” He lifted his head to look at me but we were too close. All I could see was a haze of skin, and feel his breath. He touched his forehead to mine. “You’re the most amazing person I’ve ever met.”
Wendy Rathbone has been writing for many years in the fields of science fiction, fantasy, horror, romance and erotica. Her poetry and short stories have been widely published in magazines and anthologies, and won many awards. She is a Writers of the Future alum (second place, vol 8) and has two stories in the classic, still in print, Hot Blood series, as well as a story in the scifi volume of the classic gay anthology “Bending the Landscape” edited by Nicola Griffith and Stephen Pagel.
While she has always written GLBTQ characters in her fiction and fan fiction, in 2011 she began to delve deeply into the realm of male/male romance and erotica. She has many indie m/m romance novels, the most recent being “The Moonling Prince” and its sequel “The Coming of the Light”. This year she sold her newest novel “The Android and the Thief” to Dreamspinner Press for publication in April, 2017. She also has a novella in the 2016 Christmas anthology “This Wish Tonight” from Mischief Corner Press.
Wendy lives in Yucca Valley, CA with her partner of 36 years, Della Van Hise, and is currently hard at work on a new m/m romance novel.