I’ll admit: I’ve already read the book. I’m special that way. I’ll also admit that seeing this book released pleases me to no end. No end, I tell you!
Juli and I have been corresponding (you do not need to know who many times a day) for (I still can’t believe how long) years. She listens patiently, even knowing how often the first blush of new ideas fades; she’s held my hand while whole worlds collapse around me, she encourages me to keep writing, and when I do get material out there, she’s one of my biggest supporters. Likewise, I have watched her turn into a writing madwoman, churning out material that completely amazes me. Why haven’t you seen her stuff on the shelves?
I’m not going to point to the traditional publishing industry and say, “They’re to blame! They keep us on a narrow diet of material!” because, there are works out there that are boundary-pushing and ground-breaking and wonderful. But those are far and few between, and people typically like what is familiar to them, and comforting, even when they’re living vicariously through whole worlds collapses and domestic peace falling apart and the stress of first contact. I’m guilty of it myself — even if my comfort zone is humans interacting with non-humans in a variety of settings.
But this makes it hard for writers who do not necessarily want to be constrained by what essentially makes marketing easier to get a foot in the door. I’ve been privy to a lot of behind the scene angst (Juli’s done a lot of the submission-and-rejection process; I haven’t as of yet, my stuff is too limited, I think, in scope. Read: I’m more afraid of success than failure and thus do not promote as I ought), including crises of faith. “Should I write something more mainstream?”
Well, she did, let me tell you, and she can, and it’s great, but . . . I want magic and I want mystery and I want suspense, and that magic part? I really do want it in the stories I read. Over the top, ritualistic, Ceremonial Magic-inspired to sympathetic magic to shamanism and everywhere in between.
I had the privilege of reading the material Juli wrote that was more mainstream suspense romance, and it was amazing; in fact, I adore the couple I was able to meet. But getting my grubby hands on an advanced copy of The Artist’s Inheritance nothing short of awesome. I knew going into the book what to expect, of course; I’d heard about the tale and watched it grow as we talked back and forth about it.
That really didn’t end up mattering; hearing about it and getting to read the tale are two different animals altogether, and seeing Juli return to the writing that I love of hers so much was an absolute gift.
The Artist’s Inheritance starts off dark. After the tragic death of his brother, Trevor and his wife Cait uproot their lives from California to move into his late brother’s house, working to get the house fixed up and seeing to the loose ends his brother left behind. Trevor is understandably grief-stricken, and Cait proves herself a loving, supportive wife who allows many concessions to this grieving process. Not long after moving into the house, however, Caitlin begins to see a different side to her beloved husband, as obsession over his current art piece becomes darker and darker. With the help of new and old friends alike, Caitlin uncovers a curse hanging over her husband that stretches back into history. Only untangling the threads of this curse will provide her with answers and solutions . . . but will she like the options she’s faced with?
Go visit Juli’s blog to see the trailer!
I love this book. I love how oppressively hot Florida comes across, despite my being nestled in the mild climate of the Willamette Valley. I love how annoying Trevor can be in his grief, and how clearly Cait’s love for her husband shines through. I love that there will be more books to follow.
And I love that I get to see them early.
(Also, I think book trailers are one of my favorite developments of the Internet magic!)