Monday, April 29, 2013

Mystical Moonstones in Staurolite by Marsha A. Moore

Today at Her Ladyship's Quest, I welcome back fantasy romance author Marsha A. Moore. She's been working hard on her Enchanted Bookstore Legends series and is here to announce the release of the fourth novel Staurolite.


Mystical Moonstones in Staurolite: Enchanted Bookstore Legend Four
by Marsha A. Moore
In my new release, Staurolite, the fourth book in the Enchanted Bookstore Legends, I’m expanding and developing the foundation of the magical lore of my fantasy world. The characters find themselves needing the world’s ancient wisdom to solve their own present day problems. The basis of this ages-old magical power is a group of four mystical gemstones that parallel the four Chinese elements of nature: air, earth, fire, and water. These stones serve as four powerful keystones which, together, can empower the good Alliance to overcome the threatening attacks of the evil Dark Realm. There is one controlling master gemstone, the Staurolite, which gives this fourth book its title.

The gem corresponding to air I’ve chosen to work with is the moonstone. When I selected my keystone which corresponds to air, I considered many attributes that would make it an empowering symbol.
I’ve long been fascinated with blue-white opalescence of the stone, sometimes described as ‘billowy light’ gliding over the smooth cabochon surface. Gemologists refer to this characteristic as adularescence, and a synonym for the stone is adularia. Moonstone can be colorless, white, yellow, green, brown, orange, pink, or grey, but it always has a white or blue sheen. The best moonstone is colorless with a blue sheen. The colored varieties mainly come from India.

The mystical connections of the gem intrigue me. Moonstone is considered a birthstone for February, a mystical birthstone for June, an astrological birthstone for the star sign Cancer, and the Ayurvedic birthstone for September. I’ll be studying Ayurvedic yoga during my teacher training this year and am eager to learn how this stone is used in that science.

Traditionally, some believe moonstone can be used to balance a one's yin and yang. The gemstone is thought to soothe and balance emotions and evoke calm responses. Called a visionary stone, moonstone brings inspiration, strengthens intuition and sensitivity, enhances creativity, allows the wearer to see situations from different angles, and helps one to see things more clearly. It has even been said that moonstone has the power to grant wishes. Some believe this stone will build self confidence, enhance compassion, and promote happiness and longevity. It is also thought to be a stone of protection, especially for travel at sea, pregnancy, and childbirth.

It is also considered an ideal stone for lovers, since moonstone is reputed to bring forth tender feelings, protect true love, support a person's emotional and dreamy tendencies, and increase sensitivity to others. It’s said to attract friendship and loyalty to the wearer, encourage personal attachments, help obtain romance, and arouse tender passion.

In Heritage Avenged (book two), a large rainbow moonstone is used as the focal point of an instrument which interprets information hidden in the stars. The device is called the Spheres of Sidus. It helps the reader find an answer a chosen question from the his or her past. Three onyx balls are positioned according to current positions of the birth stars of specific ancestors. When, at last, the focal moonstone rondure is placed and given sufficient power, it conjures an answer in the form of a hologram-like image.

In my latest release, Staurolite (book four), Lyra again uses rainbow moonstone of the Spheres of Sidus to help her discover clues about the locations of the four missing keystones. Additionally, through her studies of ancient texts, she learns about the air keystone, a moonstone originally from Aria, the sky world above Dragonspeir. Centuries ago, when the second Scribe was forced into Aria by attacks from the Dark Realm, she recovered the lost moonstone. It was enchanted by the queen of the sky world, to keep the folks in the Alliance safe until they could reclaim their lands. A riddle within the Queen’s poem gives Lyra clues about the location of that precious moonstone keystone. 

Learn about the enchanted moonstone and all the keystones in Staurolite: Enchanted Bookstore Legend Four. Lyra must learn how to find all four in time to save the Alliance from the attacking Dark Realm.

Photo credit for moonstones: By Memecry2 (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons



Staurolite: Enchanted Bookstore Legend Four by Marsha A. Moore
Genre: Epic Fantasy Romance
Description:
Lyra McCauley, current Scribe of the Alliance, is the only one who can decode magic hidden in the recently retrieved ancient texts written by her ancestors, the first four Scribes. Information in those writings can help Lyra locate the four missing keystones, which will restore power to the Alliance and allow overthrow of the Dark Realm. With peace restored, she and her beloved, Cullen, could finally marry.
Time is short with the Black Dragon’s Dark Realm increasing attacks to avenge the death of his heir. Many innocent lives are lost. Alliance residents are forced into hiding. Magicals and blue dragons follow leadership of the Imperial Dragon and the other three Guardians into battle to defend the Alliance.
While Lyra unlocks the ancient magic, she opens herself up to scribal powers from her ancestors. She alone can fight the deadliest of the Dark Realm’s forces—the cimafa stealth dragons—but at a cost. The energy flux threatens her health and ability to learn where to find the missing keystones. Can Lyra overcome this shrewd tactic of the Black Dragon to decimate the Alliance?

Enchanted Bookstore Legends (series description):
The Enchanted Bookstore Legends are about Lyra McCauley, a woman destined to become one of five strong women in her family who possess unique magical abilities and serve as Scribes in Dragonspeir. The Scribes span a long history, dating from 1200 to present day. Each Scribe is expected to journey through Dragonspeir, both the good and evil factions, then draft a written account. Each book contains magic with vast implications.
Lyra was first introduced to Dragonspeir as a young girl, when she met the high sorcerer, Cullen Drake, through a gift of one of those enchanted books. Using its magic, he escorted her into the parallel world of Dragonspeir. Years later, she lost that volume and forgot the world and Cullen. These legends begin where he finds her again—she is thirty-five, standing in his enchanted bookstore, and Dragonspeir needs her. 
When Lyra reopens that enchanted book, she confronts a series of quests where she is expected to save the good Alliance from destruction by the evil Black Dragon. While learning about her role, Lyra and Cullen fall in love. He is 220 years old and kept alive by Dragonspeir magic. Cullen will die if Dragonspeir is taken over by the evil faction…Lyra becomes the Scribe.

Excerpt from Staurolite:
From Chapter One: Ancient Scribal Magic
Lyra propped her head with an elbow against the low library table and rubbed her eyes, paging through the last chapter. She rearranged her weight on the floor cushion and twisted the end of her long braid.
The Tortoise Guardian’s wide, craggy cheek brushed against her forearm.
She jotted a few lines in a notebook and carefully closed the cover of the ancient copy. Her gaze rested on the faded embossed symbols—The Book of Dragonspeir authored by Elisabeth Walsh, the first Scribe.
“Good work. We’ve previewed two of the lost volumes you recovered. One more remains.” The Tortoise retracted his head halfway into his shell. “Take a break. My neck is aching.”
“I want to keep going and skim Scribe Brigid’s book too.” Lyra flipped through her notes.
The heavy wooden door to the lair library banged open. In two strides, the Imperial Dragon stood before them. “We’re under attack! Cimafa stealth dragons have stolen auras of a high order wizard and souls of three non-magicals. They also killed one of our blue sentry dragons.” His flared nostrils were ringed with fire and seeped smoke. A yellow color of concern flashed in the irises of his eyes.
“How?” Lyra rolled off the plush floor cushion, forced her stiff legs to stand, and grabbed her wizard’s staff. “I thought they only went after higher magicals?”
“Attacks from the Dark Realm?” The Tortoise pushed his front legs against the table edge to lift his shell higher.
The Head Guardian nodded. “They’re attacking in small groups for increased strength. Several pairs and trios have simultaneously flown over our Alliance before retreating to the Steppe of Ora into Silva Nocens. Those four people were taken in different places all over the Alliance during the past thirty-six hours. One cimafa attacks the victim, while the others fight our blues. Several sentries are required to battle one cimafa, and we don’t have enough squadrons. They typically sneak over our borders singly to pursue auras that will boost their power—higher magicals, like you said, Lyra. Never have they purposely attacked non-magicals.”
“Can the Guardians fight the cimafa better than sentries?” Lyra asked.
“Yes. We can do more by using our auras, but I will not ask the other three to fight. I’m on my way out to join a patrol, since I’m the most capable. Losing a Guardian would be a tremendous danger. To break the balance of the four elements would seriously harm the strength of the Alliance.” He clasped his foreclaws against his massive chest. “Even I must use control; the great expenditure of Guardian power required to kill a cimafa would temporarily weaken our governance. The blues primarily fight with physical strength, hurling lightning bolts. Unless injured, they can recoup quicker. I alone have the advantage of using both magical and physical means in battle.”
“Do you want me to help?” Lyra asked.
“No. It’s best for all if you continue your studies to unlock the clues from each Book of Dragonspeir. That will reveal a way for the Alliance to overthrow the Dark Realm. As the Scribe, you are the only one who can read the hidden magical code in those texts.” The leader turned toward the door. “I’ll check with you later, when I return.”
“Head Guardian, are the higher magicals helping?” Lyra’s voice caught in her throat. “Is Cullen safe?”
He stooped to miss the upper arch of the door threshold and glanced over his shoulder. “Most are riding the senior sentries to offer additional strike force. Sire Drake will accompany Yord in my squadron.”
Lyra stepped forward, but the Imperial Dragon gave her no chance for discussion, bolting down the stone corridor with tremendous strides. She stared after him, immobilized by the shock of his news and concern for her love. After all that she and Cullen had risked and accomplished, hoping to reach their goal of living together…this didn’t seem possible. Moments ago, a happy life seemed within their grasp. She stared at the gray stone floor, dumbfounded. Their future together, once again, hung by a thread. Her mind filled with a blur of their hard victories won over the past year.

Purchase Links for previous books in the series:


Author Bio:
Marsha A. Moore is an author of fantasy romance. Much of her life feeds the creative flow she uses to weave highly imaginative tales.
The magic of art and nature often spark life into her writing, as well as watercolor painting and drawing. After a move from Toledo to Tampa in 2008, she’s happily transformed into a Floridian, in love with the outdoors. Marsha is crazy about cycling. She lives with her husband on a large saltwater lagoon, where taking her kayak out for an hour or more is a real treat. She never has enough days spent at the beach, usually scribbling away at stories with toes wiggling in the sand. Every day at the beach is magical! She’s been a yoga enthusiast for over a decade and is excited to be taking part in a Kripalu yoga teacher training program during 2013. That spiritual quest helps her explore the mystical side of fantasy.

Author Links:
 



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