Monday, November 19, 2018

Strand of Faith by Rachel J. Bonner - Book Tour + Giveaway

Strand of Faith

When the choice is between love and life, how can anyone decide?
A girl and a monk, both with extraordinary mental powers, have compelling reasons not to fall in love.  But those from whom they expect support are manipulating them both because their choices will have consequences for the rest of the world.
After a stormy youth, Brother Prospero has found comfort and fulfilment in the monastery.  That is, until he discovers something that forces him to reconsider his whole vocation.  To follow his heart, he’ll have to face his demons again, outside the security of the monastery. Is it worth the risk?  Can he beat them this time? Or will they finally destroy him?
Orphaned and mistreated, Leonie has found sanctuary and safety at the abbey.  All she wants is to learn how to manage her unusual abilities so that she is not a danger to those around her.  When she comes into contact with Prospero everything threatens to spiral out of her control.  Whether she leaves or whether she stays, how can she possibly avoid destroying – yet again – those she has come to care about? 
Abbot Gabriel is faced with an impossible choice.  He can do nothing and watch the world descend into war.  Or he can manipulate events and ensure peace – at the cost of two lives that he is responsible for.  He knows what he has to do but is he strong enough to sacrifice those he loves?

Excerpt taken from chapter 6

Having discovered that student Leon is really Leonie, Abbot Lord Gabriel has decided to make her his ward.  He has sent her, with Brother Prospero, to meet Brother Edward so that she can be dressed and equipped suitably for the adopted daughter of a High Lord.

I followed Brother Prospero through doors, down stairs and along corridors into a large space that resembled a cavern filled with treasure. He led me across to a room on the edge of the cavern, lined with racks of fabrics in all the colours of the rainbow, and well-lit by a wall of windows. Another monk was seated there at a long work table. My head was spinning with all the new things I had to think about. The sheer size of the storerooms didn’t help and by the time we entered the inner room, the spinning felt real, not just figurative. Brother Prospero introduced me to Brother Edward and I know Brother Edward spoke to me but it didn’t seem to make sense, and then he seemed to be swaying from side to side. I heard someone call Prospero’s name urgently as if from a great distance, and then I was sitting down with a hand gently but firmly holding my head down by my knees.
“Don’t move, breath slowly,” I was told – Prospero again – and for once I felt inclined to do what I was told.
After a moment he moved his hand from my head and let me sit up, though I realised he was still holding my wrist. He was squatting down in front of me, so that his dark eyes were level with mine.
“Better?” he asked.
I nodded and regretted it as my head started to spin again.
“You don’t eat properly, you don’t sleep properly and your life is far too stressful. It’s no wonder you nearly passed out,” he accused me.
 I growled back, “And you know this how?”
“The pup has spirit,” Edward laughed from somewhere behind Prospero.
I would have snarled at him, too, but couldn’t find the energy.
Prospero ignored him to respond to me. “You’re nothing but skin and bone, you’ve got dark circles under your eyes, and you’ve been living a life of deception for the last three months at least, if not longer.”
Edward passed him a mug and he paused to press it in to my free hand. “Drink!” he commanded.
I did. It was hot and sweet, and sipping gave me time to compose myself. Truth be told, it was Prospero himself who was having a major effect on my senses. The man acted like he was always right, was far too sure of himself, and yet I trusted him instinctively. His touch made my skin feel like an electric charge was crawling across it – how could he not feel it? I wanted to bait him, annoy him, disrupt that calm exterior and make him feel as disorientated as he was making me feel. I was sure he was connected with whatever I had been seeking, and that made me feel insatiably curious, because I didn’t know what I had been seeking, and I was without any way of finding out – and that irritated me too.
I reached out with my mind – something I should have done much sooner if I’d had my wits about me – to touch his mind and see what I could find out. No telepath could read or hear more than the surface thoughts of any non-telepath’s mind – even with another telepath it was like talking without using your voice – but I thought it might give me a clue to his actions. I found a blank, a telepathic shield, and backed off. I hadn’t expected him to be a telepath – in my experience men rarely were. Then I realised that Lord Gabriel had known my name before Prospero had had time to tell him out loud; they had to both be telepathic.
Amongst the Traders, it was the women who were telepaths, like Headwomen Katya. I still missed Katya deeply. She had taken me in as her apprentice, provided me with food, a place to sleep and training. Maybe I was an Outsider, but she’d always treated me well. I could have done with her wisdom to talk over all the things that were happening now. I pulled myself away from these past memories, aware that Prospero was still watching me. I realised that I’d finished the drink, so I passed the mug back to him, and he took it and put it on the table.
“You’ll do for now,” he said, “though I wish I’d taken the opportunity to take you into the hospital last night when I had the chance.”
I shuddered, I did not like hospitals, but before Prospero could comment, Edward spoke.
“She’ll be fine here with me. You get off to wherever you are supposed to be right now.”
Prospero turned to him. “Make sure she gets a decent lunch,” he said and then looked back to me. “If you don’t eat properly, I’ll know.”
I hoped that was an empty threat but as he headed towards the door, I felt an unexpected fear flare up in me. Despite the fact that he unsettled me beyond measure, Prospero had been the one steady focal point in all that had happened in the last few hours, and now he was disappearing and leaving me in an unknown and potentially dangerous situation. I wasn’t aware that I’d said anything but he turned back and squatted down again so our eyes were on a level.
“Don’t worry; you’ll be safe with Edward,” he said quietly. “I’ll be back for you in a couple of hours.”

Author Bio
Rachel J Bonner is the author of the four book Choices and Consequences series, the first of which, Strand of Faith, is due out in November 2018.
Getting a degree in engineering, followed by a career in accountancy is probably not a conventional path to becoming an author, particularly in paranormal romance.  Rachel says that, although accountancy isn’t anything like as boring as everyone thinks, writing is a lot more fun.  When not writing, she can be found walking in the beautiful countryside near where she lives, which has influenced much of the scenery in her books, or shooting things with her local archery club.  Target shooting only, honest.  Nothing to worry about.
She also enjoys swimming, eating chocolate chip cookies and growing aromatic herbs, especially thyme and rosemary.  It’s no coincidence that her heroine likes the same things.
You can find out more about her books and sign up for Rachel’s newsletters at

Giveaway -Win a signed paperback copy of Strand of Faith, a set of bookmarks (3 styles plus a business card) featuring the cover art, and a canvas print (40cm by 30cm) of the original cover art. Open Internationally
*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

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