Rite to Reign
Genre: YA Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance
Something wicked this way comes…
Willful witches, supernatural sorcerers, cruel queens, and powerful priestesses fall out of favor and rise to rule in this highly sought-after collection of spellbinding stories!
More than 20 award-winning and bestselling authors have come together to curate this bewitching boxed set collection of the best PARANORMAL ROMANCE and URBAN FANTASY books in the genre, each brimming with stories of royal magic.
Journey through worlds of danger and mayhem, where witches and warlocks battle for influence and wizards fight for unrestricted power.
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Featuring Stories from :
USA Today bestselling author Heather Marie Adkins
JJ King writing with Candace Osmond
USA Today bestselling author SJ Davis writing with P. Mattern
USA Today bestselling author Shawna Romkey
USA Today bestselling author Ash Krafton
USA Today bestselling author Christine Ashworth
Colleen S. Myers
Andie M. Long
Alex H. Singh
Carma Haley Shoemaker
Mirren Hogen & Stephanie Barr
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From The Cursed Prince by Teresa Roman
Pieces started clicking in to place. These brothers had a very strange preoccupation with magic. That was the for my second invite. Too bad I wasn’t able to indulge their fantasies. “There are no witches in my family if that’s what you’re getting at.”
“How can you be so sure?” Frederic asked.
Before I had a chance to answer, Alexander stood up. “Do you hear that?” He looked across the table at me. “Johann Strauss is my favorite. Would you care to dance with me?”
“I … I’m not much of a dancer.”
“Don’t worry about that. I’ll lead, and you follow. You’ll be waltzing in no time.”
Before I could protest, he walked up to me and took my hand, leading me away from the table. I felt Nicolai’s eyes on me as I started dancing with his brother, and my cheeks flushed. I focused on Alexander’s feet and mine, trying not to trip. After a few minutes, I grasped the basic steps.
“Come, Nicolai. Take over. You’re the best dancer out of all of us.”
Nicolai seemed reluctant.
“Go on,” Frederic urged. “We know how much you enjoy dancing.”
He took Alexander’s place. One hand held mine while the other rested on my hip. I felt self-conscious, worried that he’d noticed the sweat on my palm or my lack of dancing skills. He clearly knew what he was doing. Yet somehow, despite my nerves, as we continued to dance everything seemed to fade away. I even managed to ignore the pounding of my heart. It felt like it was just the two of us in that room, even though his brothers hadn’t gone anywhere. A hundred different questions perched themselves on the tip of my tongue, but I couldn’t bring myself to actually ask any of them.
When the song was over, Nicolai dropped his hands to his sides and turned to look at his brothers. “There, are the three of you satisfied now?”
From Easterly by Shawna Romkey
“Really, Stazia. I could get you a dress. Your hair is lifeless. Lay off the conditioner. Black tank top? Black tutu? Black and white striped tights and red shoes? Seriously? You can make those a different color, you know? Come to the mansion, and I can make you look presentable. Pink would look good on you. Maybe a pixie cut?” Glinda said.
Stazia shuddered. Pink.
“You shouldn’t go, Stazia,” Ezmerelda said. “This is your duty, too, you know. With Mother gone…”
Stazia knew it was true. The Witches of Oz should be working together to fix the realm. She cared about Spot, she cared about the innocent people of Oz, and she wanted to help them. But so much had been said lately about how wicked she and her sister, Ezmerelda were. So many lies.
“The people of Oz hate everything we do, so why bother?” Stazia said.
“They don’t hate me,” Glinda said with a sugary smile.
“They hate Ezmerelda and me,” Stazia countered. “I can barely go into the villages anymore. There’s so much vitriol.”
“They’re just jealous of your powers,” Glinda said. “Your magic.” She eyed Stazia up and down, her gaze resting on the ruby shoes.
“They can have it. I don’t need it. I don’t do anything of significance with it. I pop here and there. That’s about it. If they hate me so much because of it—”
“Don’t be so foolish!” Ezmerelda said. “Your magic is your strength. Don’t let anyone make you feel ashamed of it.”
“I mean it, Ezmerelda. I hate it. I can go without it. It doesn’t help me in the least. I’d much rather have no magic and just live a quiet life in a cottage in the woods. Find a place far away with no magic at all,” Stazia said, wafting over to the window and gazing outside.
She touched her fingers in opposite corners of the crystal plane and pulled them in closer together. The scenery outside got smaller, and her range of vision stretched farther out. She did it again, zooming out until very little of Oz was recognizable, and she felt like she was looking down from the stars at an entire unknown world. She pointed to a place on the outer edge.
“There! I wonder if they have magic. I wonder if they’ve heard about the ‘Wicked Witch of the East.’”
From Queen Witch by Elle Middaugh
I took the spiral steps so quickly, I felt like I was flying. When I reached the bottom, though, I stopped dead in my tracks, instantly gutted by the horrifying scene before me. My skin went cold. It was like all color had drained from my body.
Blood pooled on the dusty floor, streaming between the grasses that poked up between the old stone tiles. It dripped down the side of a rough stone bed and puddled at the top where Gage lay clenching his teeth and clutching his side. He’d been stabbed.
I sprinted over, unsure if I should even touch him. He’d lost so much blood already.
“Oh, my God, Gage! Hang in there, baby, I’m gonna....” I looked around for some options, suddenly feeling faint. There was a thorny cactus growing wild in the corner. “I’m gonna fix you right up, okay?”
“Okay,” he said, through gritted teeth.
Sweat dripped down the small of my back as I quickly thought up a spell.
“Cactus with a desert flower, bless him with your healing power.” I moved my hands from the plant over to Gage, but no magic followed. The cactus hadn’t disintegrated.
Panic welled in my veins.
“Eliza,” Gage groaned, trying to roll onto his side. “Use your light magic.”
Of course! That must’ve been exactly what I needed to do.
“Okay, okay. Powers that inside me dwell, heal my prince so all is well.”
Again, I aimed my hands at Gage, but again, nothing happened. No magic formed. Neither did the headaches.
“I don’t know what’s going on!” I shouted, feeling the pressure and frustration.
If I didn’t figure something out soon, he would die. His side was still gushing out blood. The scarlet pool on the floor was spreading.
“It’s okay,” he said, trying to reassure me. But the weakness in his tone only ratcheted up my terror by at least ten notches. I couldn’t lose him.
I quickly reassessed our surroundings. It was like an abandoned desert outpost. Militant in its simplistic design. Everything was bare except for a few used goblets, an empty stone basin for washing, and a shabby vase of wilted yellow flowers tucked into a dusty corner.
Maybe there was a medicine kit in the cupboards?
I rifled through, toppling over unmarked spices, some jarred staples with a long shelf life, and packets of freeze-dried essentials, but I found nothing useful. My whole body tensed as defeat drew near.
How was I supposed to win this trial without magic? The thought of losing Gage, even within a vision, was unspeakable. It cut me open, brought every emotion I had for him to the surface, and doused them all in stinging salt.
I took a deep breath. What were my options? I couldn’t use magic for some fucked-up reason. There was no medicine. Nothing to stitch him back up with.
Gage moaned faintly from the cot.
Come on, Eliza, think! You’re a witch. What, other than magic, would make a witch qualified to compete in this trial?
I stared at the half-empty goblets. Then up at the unmarked spices. Then over to the stone basin. And finally to the wilted flowers.
Potions! Witches could brew potions!
I rushed over to Gage, carefully avoiding his blood on the floor.
“Hold on just a little longer, okay?” I said, putting a palm to his forehead. It was covered in sweat and hot as a branding iron. He groaned, but I was certain he hadn’t even heard me.
I was running out of time.
I’m Teresa Roman and I write contemporary and paranormal romance. My latest book, The Cursed Prince, will be part of a boxed set called Rite to Reign. Rite to Reign features over 20 full-length never before published paranormal novels.
I was inspired to write The Cursed Prince because I love a good paranormal novel and witches are my favorite. The Cursed Prince will be book 1 of a planned 3 book series. I don’t have any side stories planned yet, but if my readers request them, then I’ll happily oblige. I wanted to write a story featuring witches and royalty so I built the story around these concepts.
The main characters in The Cursed Prince are Willow Duncan and Nicolai Korzha. Willow grew up in a small town in upstate New York. She secretly hopes for something exciting to happen in her boring life. Then she finds out she’s actually a witch but having powers turns out to be more than she bargained for. Nicolai is a prince from a small country in eastern Europe who’s spent the last few years of his life hoping to find someone who can lift his curse. He’s all but given up until he meets Willow. My characters aren’t based off anyone I know, but I love them all the same. If The Cursed Prince was made into a movie I would love to see Kit Harrington play Nicolai and Ashley Greene play Willow. The Cursed Prince is special to me because it has a bit of all my favorite story elements – magic, romance, characters to swoon over, etc. My cover was designed by Damonza. They do all my covers and are amazing. If this book was a candle it’s scent would be one part sage and one part lemon verbena.
Want to learn more about me and my books?
Then visit me here: Website: www.teresaromanwrites.com