October 21, 2014
Debra Mullins introduced readers to the world of the Truthseers in Prodigal Son. Now the story of the lost Atlanteans continues in Heart of Stone.
Darius Montana is a Seer. With his gift of empathy, he can see into the hearts of others, both human and Atlantean. When his family comes into possession of one of the legendary power stones of Atlantis, Darius is sent to find the Stone Singer.
Faith Karaluros is the last Stone Singer. Manipulated all her life for her rare ability, she is widowed after her husband tried to steal her power for the Mendukati, an extremist group that hunts Seers. Faith wants nothing more than to stay out of this war when Darius comes to find her—just in time to rescue her from being kidnapped.
Faith goes with Darius, determined to do the job and be on her way with the money that can set her up where no one can find her again. She didn’t count on the Mendukati sending a hit man after her. Darius swears he can protect her, but when she discovers he is one of the rare Atlanteans whose powers work on their own kind, can she trust him to keep his word, or is she being used again?
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AWARDS AND REVIEWS
HOLT Medallion Award of Merit
National Reader's Choice Award Winner
“A fascinating blend of mythos and plot, the novel builds on the strengths of the first book and also stands strong on its own merits.” –Publisher’s Weekly
“Mullins continues to flesh out her engaging alternate reality with high-stakes action and shocking revelations that force her characters to reevaluate all they believe.” –RT Book Reviews
"The unique world building, exceptional characters, and steamy romance made Heart of Stone the best paranormal romance I've read this year." –Addicted2heroines.com
Excerpt from Heart of Stone
Corinne shot lightning in Faith’s direction, but the bolts flew wild, shattering more pottery. Faith didn’t even flinch. Most Atlanteans could not use their powers on each other; they just didn’t work. As far as she knew the only exception was an Echo like Michael, a Channeler whose ability was to enhance the powers of others.
So Corinne couldn’t electrocute her, but she could certainly use the lightning to set the store on fire or bring the roof down on Faith’s head. To that end, Faith used the energy she had pulled from the stones to reinforce her personal barrier. Corinne had always been a hothead, and control was definitely not one of her strong points.
She was, to put it simply, bat-shit crazy.
“I’m not going back, Corinne.”
“It’s not that simple, Faith. You can’t just leave. Sure, we knew you were torn up after you killed your husband, and the Elders were giving you time to grieve. Now Wei Jun is dead, and Azotay is here.” Breathing hard from temper, Corinne rounded the edge of the counter. “Time’s up.”
“Just leave, Corinne. You’ve had your hissy fit. Why don’t you call it a night?”
Corinne laughed, throwing her head back in clear, maniacal glee. “You really have forgotten everything, haven’t you? Do you really think I came here alone?”
Silently, Faith cursed. She had forgotten. The Mendukati always went on missions in pairs. “Call your pal,” she said. “Let’s get this out in the open.”
“My thoughts exactly.” Corinne propped her hip against the counter and folded her arms, blocking Faith’s only exit. “I already called him.”
Him. Azotay? Faith sucked in a slow breath to calm her churning stomach. No, Azotay wouldn’t come himself. Rumor said he only stepped in personally in the most extreme circumstances, so it was probably someone else. Another Mendukati soldier. A Channeler like her and Corinne, or a Warrior? She’d have a shot against another Channeler, but a Warrior, blessed with super-human strength and speed, was a different story.
The bell tinkled as the door opened. Faith tensed, and Corinne looked over, her smug expression fading. “We’re closed.”
The man filling the doorway tilted his head, his stylishly cut, long brown hair just sweeping his massive shoulders. Handsome in a chiseled-cheekbones-sexy-mouth kind of way, he had tempered being too pretty with a rakish looking mustache and goatee. His casual khakis and the Navy blue polo shirt hugging his broad chest tagged him as a tourist, a well-to-do one based on the pricey watch on his wrist. Any other time Faith would have admired the view, but not with Corinne hair-triggered to do some damage.
“You do know the place is on fire, right?” he said.
“It’s under control,” Corinne said. She flexed her fingers, lightning rippling around her hands behind the counter.
Corinne, don’t. Faith sent the thought telepathically. He’s just a tourist.
A tourist in the wrong place at the wrong time.
“Let me help you.” The man sent Faith a steady look, his eyes a stunning blue against his olive complexion, his smile coaxing. “I couldn’t call myself a gentleman if I left ladies in distress.”
“It’s all right,” Faith said. “We’re leaving.” Just go, she pleaded in her thoughts. Get out of here before Corinne decides to toast you.
She might be surprised.
The decidedly masculine voice in her mind made her gasp.
Corinne narrowed her eyes. “You know this guy, Faith?”
Slowly Faith shook her head. “No.” Blue eyes. Brilliant, topaz-blue eyes, and he could hear her thoughts.
Seer. Had to be. She’d never seen one up close before.
She spoke directly to him. Go, Seer. She’ll kill you.
A shadow appeared behind the Seer. Corinne smiled.
“Look out!” Faith cried just as Corinne’s partner shoved the Seer into the shop. The Seer stumbled and caught himself on a display rack, and for the first time Faith noticed his cane as it clattered to the floor. Corinne’s partner followed him in, shutting the door behind him.
Erok. Faith remembered him from the Atlantean orphan camp where she’d grown up. He’d come into his impressive size early in his teens and had enjoyed terrorizing some of the younger kids before he’d been enrolled in formal combat training. His penchant for killing made him the perfect soldier for the Mendukati.
He pushed past the Seer and headed toward them, his gaze cold and black like an icy abyss. She shuddered. She’d had a close encounter with him once, caught alone in the woods when she was fifteen. She’d escaped then only because Michael had come looking for her. This time she wouldn’t be so lucky.
Erok’s orders didn’t allow him to kill her, but she might wish he had.
The Seer slowly bent down to pick up his cane. “I’m not sure what’s going on here, but we’re all going to die of smoke inhalation if we don’t get out of this place.”
Corinne came out from behind the counter and moved past Erok towards the Seer. “It’s all under control.” She raised her hands, energy crackling like a live thing up to her shoulders. “Just hold still, and this won’t hurt a bit.” She laughed. “Wait, who am I kidding? It’ll hurt…a lot.”
With a whoop, she thrust her arms forward and fired the lightnings at him.
Copyright © 2014 Debra Mullins
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