Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Terri Barnett's Shadow Dreams Lovely Fantasy But With Wicked High Priestess!

I love this book cover... It not only perfectly matches the story, but is beautifully done... I would have loved to see her face, but after all, she was a shadow...

Or at least she was for a short time...


"Bethany looked at the man warily. She'd had enough of his games. “What now?” 

“You won't be allowed to cross over to Earth in the physical form.”

 “Why not?” 

“Because you're too emotionally involved with this quest of yours. You could become locked into that plane with no hope of ever returning to Keilah. What good would you be to your daughter then?” He stood and walked over to the window. Turning his face toward the suns, he let the warmth soak into his bones. “I will, however, permit you to travel as a shadow. Being a Knower, you should have no problem with this form of mental imagery.”

 “A shadow? I fail to see what good that will do me. I need to talk to the man and find out what he knows.” She walked over to Zachariah and placed her hand on his arm. “Is there no other way?”

 “Not for you, Bethany M'Doro. Not for you.” He turned to face her. “But if you can draw him to the portal's entry in his world, I will allow him to cross over to this place, the same as I allowed you. You can talk to him here.” He held out his hand. “Come with me, now. We need to consult the Akashic Records to see exactly where this Connor Jessup exists.”


Shadow Dreams (now free on Kindle...)
By Teri Barnett

This is a lovely fairly tale fantasy that's out of this world! Specifically in Keilah. Don't worry that you've never heard of it--it's on another plane, another dimension... I enjoyed the imagery presented where one individual is a gatekeeper! between these planes....
Saturn and Earth #2



Once through the continuum, she discovered a sky as dark as the deepest black onyx. Beneath it ran a network of brightly colored energy cables. These lines criss-crossed each other and formed a three dimensional grid, representing the different planes of existence in the universe. Along each one, millions of sparks traveled, echoing the essences of the beings living in that plane. Here and there, a spark would grow brighter then disintegrate. That must be what death looks like, she thought. Bethany struggled to see beyond the black horizon where the cables stretched off into oblivion. How was she going to find the Earth plane among all of these? But the instant she thought of Earth, one of the lines flashed. She thought of Earth again, holding the name in her mind and the color of the cable intensified. Bethany willed herself to move toward the light. Once there, she thought of Connor Jessup and a minute portion shone even brighter. She reached out and clasped the line. Here was her destination.

Ok, I'd better get back to the beginning of the story and not get you mixed up by all my favorite things about this book...


Tarot card from the Rider-Waite tarot deck, al...
Tarot card from the Rider-Waite tarot deck, also known
 as the Rider-Waite-Smith deck. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Sara M'Doro has been kidnapped; she is Bethany's daughter. She shouldn't have been taken because the High Priestess of Keilah had mandated only orphans. However, since she was there... her soul was taken...

Each time the High Priestess took the soul of somebody, she would take all of the years that they had left. Everybody thought she was immortal and did her bidding...

But Bethany was going to find her daughter, no matter what!

Fortunately, she knew how to do it! At a recent dig, she and Ian her friend, had found a box. It contained The Book of Eitel.” In addition to being a digger, Bethany also had gifts for healing and for reading the history of articles they excavated. Ian claimed that this was impossible, since the story about Eitel and its people was a myth. As they picked out other items, Bethany found an old hair comb...

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"Bethany nodded. She scooped up a handful of the dirt and closed her eyes, waiting for what images may come to her. But there was only darkness. “It's no good, Ian.” She brushed one hand against the other, cleaning the dirt away. “There's not enough substance left to the bones for me to be able to identify them.” Bethany turned her attention to the comb, moving her fingers over the thin tortoise shell teeth and the slightly raised mother of pearl inlay. This time, the images came.
"I want you to have this, Elizabeth.” A tall man, with thick black hair and piercing eyes, handed the comb to a woman. “I love you,” he whispered. 
"Thank you. I'll wear it always,” Elizabeth replied, a smile playing about her lips. She rolled her long brown hair into a knot on top of her head and fastened it with the comb. Turning her back to the man, she bade, “Unfasten the buttons for me, Connor. I'd like to show you just how thankful I am." 
Connor ran his hands along Elizabeth's arms in a sweeping caress. He paused at her back and began to remove her dress.
Bethany shook her head to clear it. “I feel like I'm eavesdropping,” she whispered.
~~~ 


There were signs also there that one or more individuals died by burning. Then the comb also took her to a Paranian kiyolo, which were places in the past where others had lived or died underground. They also assumed from the remains of the clothing that these individuals were from a different plane... She recognized that this particular kiyolo wasn't very far, so they set out to further investigate.

Bethany had also wound the comb into her own hair and began to have visions, seeing that the woman, Elizabeth, had left Connor. Perhaps she was dead or perhaps Connor could explain how she came to be there and how to open the box... What happened, though, was that she kept seeing visions of the life Connor and Elizabeth had been leading.
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With all other searching completed, Bethany decided to try to find Connor. First she went to see Maud, who was a weaver of stories and after gathering more information, Maud sent her on to the portal... I enjoyed the character, Zachariah, Keeper of the Portal. 
He was quite humorous for somebody who stayed at his post day in and day out... He agreed to send her but only as a shadow of herself
"The moment Bethany touched the coarse paper, her mind exploded with images. A cabin set apart from a small town was nestled in the middle of dark snow covered mountains. The place and time came to her. Devil's Gate, Nevada, 1875. The next sight overlapped the first. A man asleep in bed, his breathing heavy and labored, a bottle near his head. Somewhere outside the structure, a wolf howled and Bethany cringed with a feeling of imminent death. She pulled her hand away, shivering. 
“He's dying.” Zachariah nodded. “His time on Earth is almost over. According to the records, he leaves that plane in 1875.”
 “I saw those numbers in my vision. I have to get to him, Zachariah, before he dies.”
“I understand.” 
..."He stood. “Here, take my seat. Now, place both hands on the page of Connor Jessup's life and close your eyes.” Bethany did as she was instructed. Almost immediately she felt her body fade away as her spirit took flight.
~~~

Because she was only a shadow, Connor could not immediately see her when she got to his cabin. And then even when he did, he thought she was an angel, come to be with him as he died... For most of his life since Elizabeth had left him, he was continuously drinking and he was indeed physically very ill. As a healer, Bethany tried to offer to help, but in his confused state, he couldn't understand and kept telling her that he wasn't ready to die. 

But she did convince him to travel to the portal with her, mainly because she shared she believed that Elizabeth was there, showing him her comb. But once in Keilah and he was no longer drinking (he had brought some but it was gone), he began to see Bethany in a different light. While she also was attracted to him... That became quite interesting when Ian showed up and grabbed Bethany and welcomed her home with a kiss...

And the search continued with all of them going...

The creativity and imagination exhibited in this novel made it such an enjoyable read! Kudos to the author! Yet it is not so fanciful that there is not a great story that keeps readers eagerly reading and waiting to see what happens just as when a kidnapping of a child occurs in a great thriller.

Bethany is gentle in her healing and viewing of the history of articles but when she's out looking for her daughter, nothing and nobody was going to stop her. The ending was not a surprise for me, but I still thoroughly enjoyed what happened!  Fantasy or thriller fans--check this one out! Highly recommended...and it's available free for Kindle right now...


GABixlerReviews


statement"The natural world, translated through color, movement and whimsy, captures my imagination. I toss in a love of mythology, ancient icons, the Up North forests, and art quilts. What you see in my work is the result of this blending."
bioTeri Barnett was born in Southeastern Michigan and came to Indiana in 1981. She continues to be inspired by the lakeshores of her birth state, the vastness of its northern forests, and the movement of sand and stone. Ancient textiles, shrines, icons, and quilts serve as touchstones for color and form, which she is constantly exploring in her work.
Her paintings reside in the permanent collections of Eli Lilly, Franklin College, Wellpoint, Rush Shelby Energy, NPCA, Community Hospital, and others and have been collected nationally. In 2007, she was chosen to be one of the featured artists for the Arts Council of Indianapolis' BeIndypendent campaign kick-off and, in 2008, she was juried into the Indiana Artisan Program. Recent achievements include receiving the Jury Prize of Distinction for Contemporary Art at the 85th Annual Hoosier Salon Exhibition at the Indiana State Museum and the First Place award at the Art on the Avenue festival. Teri is co-owner of Broad Ripple Art & Design and maintains a studio at The Harrison Center for the Arts. Her works can be viewed by appointment. She is also available for commissions and public art projects.
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