Excerpt: ‘The Fireflies of Todaiji’ by Russell Hemmell

Here’s a beautiful Japanese sci-fi piece by new contributor Russell Hemmell. The first story in Part II, our literary section.

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‘The Fireflies of Todaiji’ by Russell Hemmell

They strolled along Sinus Iridum’s walking area, luscious and green—the dome’s borders looming in the distance. Artificiality nonetheless, it’s an awesome place, Chandra thought.

“Thanks for having me here.” Yumiko said with a timid smile. “Would you honour me and visit my home?”

“Certainly. When?”

“For the Todaji. There’s no better occasion to be in New Hokkaido.”

“Todaji? What’s that?”

“It’s the main event of the year. We celebrate the coming of spring and the cherry blossoms.”

“I’m not sure I understand, Yumiko.”

“What’s not to understand? It’s a water festival, and in Japan they regularly hold it.”

“See? At least two things in your sentence that don’t add up. This is not Japan, it’s not even Earth. And, water is at a premium everywhere on the Moon. Can’t believe things are that different in your settlement,” Chandra said.

“No, but…”

“Don’t you think that at least people like us, born and bred on the lunar surface—or under, depending on where your home is—should start building our own culture?”

Yumiko stared at her with a dismayed face. “I like traditions. I like festivals.”

“Of a place you have never seen, and of a language you can’t even write any longer.”

“I still speak Japanese.”

“If you were there now, they would treat you as an alien—and this is what you are, Yumiko. A human alien from the Satellite.”

Her friend lowered her head, remaining silent for a moment. “So you’re not coming.”

Chandra thought about it. “Is it dangerous? You know I’m still recovering from my training injuries of last term.”

“No danger. And it’s only a few hours from Russell Bay.”

“I’ll come.”

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Russell Hemmell’s Author Page

Insignia: Asian Fantasy Stories Page (Insignia Vol.4.)

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AVAILABLE FROM:

| Smashwords | B & N | kobo |

| Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | Amazon CA |

| Amazon DEAmazon JPAmazon IN |

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Add on Goodreads

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BOTM: ‘A Mortal Song’ by Megan Crewe

This looks really good! It’s definitely jumping the queue on my reading list. 🙂

A Mortal Song

By Megan Crewe

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Blurb:

Sora’s life was full of magic—until she discovered it was all a lie.

Heir to Mt. Fuji’s spirit kingdom, Sora yearns to finally take on the sacred kami duties. But just as she confronts her parents to make a plea, a ghostly army invades the mountain. Barely escaping with her life, Sora follows her mother’s last instructions to a heart-wrenching discovery: she is a human changeling, raised as a decoy while her parents’ true daughter remained safe but unaware in modern-day Tokyo. Her powers were only borrowed, never her own. Now, with the world’s natural cycles falling into chaos and the ghosts plotting an even more deadly assault, it falls on her to train the unprepared kami princess.

As Sora struggles with her emerging human weaknesses and the draw of an unanticipated ally with secrets of his own, she vows to keep fighting for her loved ones and the world they once protected. But for one mortal girl to make a difference in this desperate war between the spirits, she may have to give up the only home she’s ever known.

Amazon US

Goodreads

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More book recommendations are available under our ‘Book of the Week’ category.

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Asian fantasy writers, please visit our Submissions Page for details on our upcoming anthology projects. New contributors welcome!

Have a published Asian fantasy novel or novella? We’d be happy to feature it here on the blog sometime. Send your book info and links to: blackwingsandwhitepaper@gmail.com

Cover Reveal & Update – Insignia Vol.4

Hello everyone,

If you’re like me, you’re counting down the days until Christmas Day and/or the start of vacation!

Due to the chaos of work and life around this time of year, I am still working on editing/proofreading for Insignia Vol.4, so will delay releasing the ebook until January sometime. I really need the quiet of a few weeks off work to concentrate on it.

But, I do want to share a little treat with you all, so here is the finished cover and blurb!

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INSIGNIA Vol.4 includes 9 Asian fantasy stories with a mix of literary, contemporary, myth-based, and historical fantasy pieces. Countries included are Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia, the Philippines, Japan, China, India, and Nepal.

With stories by: Joyce Chng, Sheenah Freitas, Russell Hemmell, Allison Thai, Anna Tan, Tina Issacs, Nidhi Singh, EK Gonzales, and Kelly Matsuura.

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BOTW: ‘The Tree of Life’ Lisa M. Collins

Today’s Book of the Week is a Japanese short story by Lisa M. Collins.

The Tree of Life by Lisa M. Collins

516Gl3F4tfL._SX311_BO1,204,203,200_Blurb:

The starfaring Ryukyuan clans have lived under a single guiding philosophy for nine millennia. Will one tragic mistake, one secret, destroy them?

*16 pages*

| Amazon US | Goodreads |

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BOTW: ‘The Castle of all Nightmares (Tales of Crow 2)’ by Chris Ward

New release!

The Castle of all Nightmares (Tales of Crow 2)

By Chris Ward

TOC 2 - ebook coverBlurb:

A group of stranded tourists, a missing billionaire, and a dead woman in the woods, killed by some kind of giant bird. As lights blink on and off in the seemingly deserted Heigel Castle, it appears that Professor Crow is back …

Seven years after the tragic events at British Heights, Jun Matsumoto is now lead singer for Plastic Black Butterfly as they tour across Europe. Their shows bring them to the quiet Romanian town of Heigel, where a series of brutal animal killings have been followed up by the murder of an old local woman. The clues point to Jun’s old nemesis, Professor Crow. Despite the danger, Jun is unable to resist the chance to take revenge on the man who left so many of his friends dead. However, Professor Crow has his own scores to settle …

The Castle of All Nightmares is the second novel in Chris Ward’s Tales of Crow series, following on from They Came Out After Dark. The third volume, The Puppeteer King, will be published later in 2015.

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| Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon AUS |

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Preview They Came out after Dark (Tales of Crow I)

Chris Ward’s Author Page

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‘Insignia: Japanese Fantasy Stories’ on SALE!!!!!!

SMASHWORDS SUMMER SALE – JULY 1ST TO JULY 31ST

SALE – 50% OFF! ONLY US$1.50

Insignia: Japanese Fantasy Stories

 

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INSIGNIA Vol.1 includes 9 Japanese fantasy stories with a mix of urban, literary,

contemporary, myth-based,and historical fantasy pieces.

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Link to Smashwords Page

( ADD THE PROMO CODE SSW50 AT CHECKOUT )

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Insignia: Chinese Fantasy Stories is not yet available from Smashwords, but you can view the book information and Amazon links here.

FREE! ‘Insignia: Chinese Fantasy Stories’ June 6th-8th

Sorry, this sales promotion is now closed. (June 9th)

Hi everyone! Hope you’re having a great start to the month.

We have a promotion going this weekend – Insignia: Chinese Fantasy Stories is FREE on all Amazon sites, AND Insignia: Japanese Fantasy Stories is only 99c!!! Tell your friends!

(Click on the book titles to go to the relevant book pages on this site)

FREE!

Insignia: Chinese Fantasy Stories

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| Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon JP | Amazon AUS | Amazon Canada |

| Amazon IT | Amazon DE | Amazon FR | Amazon ES | Amazon MX | Amazon IN | Amazon BR |

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ONLY 99c!

Insignia: Japanese Fantasy Stories

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| Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon JP | Amazon AUS | Amazon Canada |

| Amazon IT | Amazon DE | Amazon FR | Amazon ES | Amazon MX | Amazon IN | Amazon BR |