THE BOOK: Absolution.
PUBLISHED IN: 2021
THE AUTHOR: Rachelle Storm.
THE EDITOR: Maggie Katamay.
THE PUBLISHER: Amazon.
SUMMARY: Absolution weaves together an unforgettable plot of forbidden desire and sworn duty as three immortal brothers struggle to protect themselves in a corrupt world that seems destined to end in annihilation. Chris Harris’s destiny was bestowed on him before birth, just as it was on his two brothers, John and Randy. Not human but the physical embodiment of elemental water, earth, and fire, they’ve been burdened with protecting Earth and freeing the world from the Ultimate Evil, an enigmatic force shrouded in mystery and only known as a looming threat on the rise. However, unlike their elemental forms, their human selves have desires of their own and Chris finds himself in a situation that makes him question everything.
After a night of training in New York City goes wrong, Chris and his two brothers are hidden away in the remote town of Anderson, North Dakota by the Guardians, a brotherhood sworn to protect the immortals and help them fulfill their destiny. Their plans are derailed when Chris has an intense encounter with Joanie McNamara, a young woman returning to her hometown after years of running from her past. Forced to choose love or duty, Chris is placed in an impossible situation that leaves him at odds with those sworn to protect him as he tries to decide whether to embrace his instincts or the only values he has ever known. His choice will place everyone on a collision course with the Ultimate Evil and nothing will ever be the same. Absolution is an epic fantasy intertwined with a contemporary romance at heart as Chris and Joanie try to find a way to embrace their love and still save the world from itself.
THE BACK STORY: In 2009, I was fresh out of college and trying to figure out what to do with my life during The Great Recession. I wanted to escape into my writing and started listening to music to get into the mood. As soon as “Map of the Problematique” by Muse began to play, the first scene of the book unfolded in my mind. It didn’t take long for my imagination to fill in the blanks or to decide that this would not only be a book, but a series. It took a while to gain the courage to publish the first novel and it has been edited quite a few times over the years. The pandemic forced me to actually sit down and make a decision about how I wanted to proceed with the story that I always knew deep down needed to be told. I felt very much at a crossroad in my life and chose to share my characters and their story with the world. I haven’t looked back since.
WHY THIS TITLE?: I get asked this question quite often. Some readers see the title and assume it is some sort of religious text because absolution is a term rooted in religion. However, the story is not religious, even though it is a bit ontological. It is rooted in the concept of how humans and the universe came to be, but from the perspective of an epic fantasy. Absolution is the process of creating a shift from the consumption of evil to embracing goodness in the world. If the Elements create absolution, they could tip the scales of the world back in favor of Good in the never-ending battle between Good versus Evil. This is the story of how that battle comes to be.
WHY WOULD SOMEONE WANT TO READ IT? Absolution is unique because of its hybridity and the way it plays with traditional tropes in fantasy and romance genres. It is a fantasy, but steeped in romance. It takes itself seriously and yet has humor and sarcasm. It is both traditionally romantic and yet feminist in its approach to romance. Most importantly, Absolution is meant for the mainstream and embraces diversity with multiracial characters looking to break through the glass ceiling and shatter the expectations of what love interests and heroes in the genres can embody.
In terms of a niche audience, Absolution is great for New Adult readers who once considered themselves YA readers, but have since grown up a bit. These readers still love the fantasy elements and romance, but have moved on from the high school settings of popular YA novels from the past decade.
“You know when you sometimes read a synopsis of a book and you get an idea in your head of how the story is going to go? Well, this one blew me away. It was truly surprising. First we have elementals (of sorts) and that’s one of my favorite kinds of magic ever (Huge Avatar the Last Airbender fan here) and then we have a fast paced, easy to read, almost like a movie feel to the story. It was so effortless to imagine what was going on, and what every character looked like. There was action, humour, and even enough romance to suit my little fluffy heart. I read it so fast (once I got started) and I’m now finding myself waiting for the next book. Don’t miss out if you are looking to clock out of the world for a while and just have some fun.” – Chelle’s Book Ramblings.
“Kept me reading and thinking of the characters when I was away from the book and unable to read it, imagining what may be coming next. Can’t wait for the next book!” — Amazon Review
— This book was great for any fans of paranormal/fantasy type fiction. It was an easy read but didn’t lack depth which I’ve found some books of the same genre to do. The story hooks you quickly and keeps you intrigued and wanting to know more. The characters are all developed well and you can definitely find a character to relate to. I really liked the character of John the most and related to him quite a bit. Those looking for a character they can rally behind and be a “team member” for (example: team Jacob/Edward from the twilight saga) you can absolutely find a character to get behind and root for in this series! I only wish the book was longer so I could continue the adventure with these characters, but I can’t wait for the next one!” – Goodreads Review
AUTHOR PROFILE: There are two things to know about me as an author. One, I am a book nerd who loves fandoms, popular culture, and embraces the truly powerful way humans can come together as a fandom family when they enjoy a fictional universe. I love all things fandom, including the romance, fantasy, and epicness of it all.
Two, I am a proud, Black woman who loves writing diverse, multiracial characters in complicated, nuanced worlds. In a world obsessed with black and white, I tend to also embrace the gray. When it comes down to it, I write to help readers escape the sometimes dark world we live in and find solace in a world that not only gives them hope, but leaves a piece of that feeling with them when they finish the story.
AUTHOR COMMENTS: Absolution was completed while I was very much immersed in the pandemic and all of the social/political issues facing our current state of the world were in the backdrop. The book world is on the brink of a War on Destruction, a vague war with no end in sight and nothing but inevitable escalations. The story takes place a few years later than we are in present-day and in this world, there was a pandemic of some sort. There is racism, sexism, and everything else we experience. The difference is the Harris Brothers are meant to actually save humankind from the world that is collapsing around them. The book is not political, but has social commentary. It is not religious, but is ontological and philosophical at points. Current events definitely will hit home when reading, but not enough to jolt readers out of the escapism it embraces.
SAMPLE: You can find a sample by heading over to my author page on Amazon.com or giving the Kindle version a try on Amazon.
WHERE TO BUY IT: Amazon for Paperback and Kindle Versions
Barnes & Noble for Hardcovers
CONTACT THE AUTHOR: Contact Rachelle Storm on Twitter @rachellestorm42 or through her website at rachellestorm.com