Here are some snapshots of three of the main characters from Goddess-Born (recently posted to my Google+ page).
THE QUILL PEN IS MIGHTIER THAN THE SWORD!
With a little help from the writer’s divine friends.
Anne Fircone is a noblewoman who wants to end the privileges of her own class, topple the monarchy, and turn her country into a republic. She is also the former lover of a man who became a god: Johnny the Singer, the Lord of Art. But before he became a god, Johnny was a commoner, and Anne’s haughty father objected to the relationship and threatened to disinherit her. To protect her status (and access to her father’s wealth), Anne testified against Johnny at his trial for witchcraft — and he was sentenced to hang!
Johnny escaped to the world of Faerie and eventually became a god, and Anne, seized with remorse (also fear of divine vengeance), makes a generous offering at his shrine. Johnny appears to her and assures her that it’s her own forgiveness she needs, not his, and gives her a gift: a writer’s eloquence. Thereafter, using the pen name Madame Foresight, Anne becomes the Voice of the Revolution, writing and publishing incendiary pamphlets that urge the people to cast off their chains!
In the end, though, she finds that it’s the revolution itself — and the evil at its heart — that finds her a greater threat, and threatens her life in return, not her own noble peers.
WHEN YOUR MOTHER IS A GODDESS, YOU DON’T KNOW HER BUT SHE KNOWS YOU.
Sonia Sandburr appears to be the only child of a wealthy merchant, the late Gerald Sandburr. But in reality, her mother is the goddess Illowan, Lady of Light and Fire, and her father is the god Malatant, Lord of Shadow and Wickedness. Her divine mother left Sonia with Emily Sandburr when she was a baby, extracting a promise that Emily would reveal her real parentage to Sonia on her fifteenth birthday.
Sonia worships her real parents and calls upon them to power her magic spells, but she has never met either of them. She inherited great magical talent, high intelligence, and striking beauty, and she grew up in a loving home, but she has never felt her mother’s embrace, and she is not sure why.
Strange events are moving through her life. She finds herself at age twenty-one in love for the first time — with another goddess-born, Malcolm, son of Johnny the Singer, the God of Art, and Shavana, the Mother of Life, who was fostered with the lofty Lord Pinecone and his wife. She worries that her promiscuous past will be held against her, that Malcolm will think her untrustworthy in a long-term relationship.
But that’s not her worst problem. Her country stands on the brink of revolution, and the movement for the people’s liberation is corrupted by the influence of Gilusa, a twisted priestess dedicated to Sonia’s divine father — but acting against the god’s wishes. Sonia is the only one who can oppose Gilusa’s machinations, one sorceress against another, for her country, her people’s freedom, her father’s love, and Sonia’s unborn child.
SHE’S BETRAYED HER GOD AND PLUNGED A NATION INTO CHAOS AND A MONSTER WANTS HER FOR DINNER.
Gilusa, Priestess of the Shadow, stunningly beautiful and magically powerful, was born a slave. From puberty until age sixteen, she served as the sexual toy of anyone who desired her, male or female. When she was sixteen, the dark god Malatant saw her potential, gave her his child to bear, and inducted her into his priesthood.
No longer a slave, Gilusa holds high status and wields great power, but resentment still burns in her for those early years of degradation. She longs in her heart for revenge against those who used her, the society that made her a slave, even the dark god himself.
And the Worm of the World has chosen her for its meal. She hears its powerful call in her mind, dreams of being swallowed alive by the creature, and wakes from nightmares screaming.
Now Malatant has sent Gilusa on a mission to the Old World. He wants her to further his interests there in the place from which Gilusa’s ancestors fled ages ago. The Old Gods have returned, much to the people’s astonishment, and Malatant wants his share of influence in the events of these times.
But for Gilusa, her mission is a chance to escape from the Worm’s call, to indulge her passion for chaos and ruin, and to work her revenge.
Can anyone betray the God of Shadow and succeed, even in another world? Can the call of the Worm be denied?